GIS – Seven Peace Corps Volunteers were sworn in by US Ambassador Dr. Larry Palmer, Friday.
Dr. Palmer, a former Peace Corps Volunteer himself, commended the young men and women for shouldering such a heavy responsibility. He wished them success over their stay and reminded them to be ambassadors for both the United States of America and Saint Lucia.
“It will be a life changing experience,” Dr. Palmer said. “You are committing two years to improving the education of Saint Lucian children and fostering strong ties between Saint Lucia and the United States; and you too will reap the benefits of your work.”
The volunteers arrived in Saint Lucia on June 13. Since then, they participated in an intensive ten-week training program to improve their knowledge of the country, the language, and the technical aspects of teaching literacy, particularly in cross cultural settings. They will work alongside classroom teachers to strengthen the literacy foundation for students in grades 1-3 in primary schools based in Dennery, Soufriere, Grace, Monchy and Micoud.
Minister for Education, Human Resource Development and Labour, Hon. Dr. Robert Lewis said he is pleased that this group of volunteers will focus on literacy.
“I have read the plan of the action that has been put together by the Peace Corps, which stated that its work in the Eastern Caribbean will be specifically targeted toward literacy. Unfortunately, we still have children who leave our schools at Grade 6 who are not fluent or proficient in reading.”
There are currently nine Peace Corps Volunteers serving in Saint Lucia, which was one of the first three countries in the world to receive Peace Corps volunteers.
The programme was established in 1961.