RECENTLY ON TOL:
- A tumblr site dedicated to the people and places that make up Oregon and Southwest Washington.
There were organizations before the Peace Corp, upon which the Peace Corp was modelled. Note the "permanent" in John F. Kennedy's announcement about starting a "Peace Corp." I was active in the international 4-H program and went abroad in the Eisenhower program "People to People" with a Future Farmers of America group.
I went though many countries in Europe, both in western Europe and "behind" the Iron Curtain--think 1964 and "Checkpoint Charlie" times. I met many folks who had not seen an American since WWII. I had a wonderful moment in one area, a 5,000 hectar commune, when I found WWII Lend Lease tractors that had been bought from the British after the war. There were up to seven folks running one tractor built in the 1930s. Because my father owned a John Deere Dealership then, I knew you could still get spare parts for that tractor. So an hour conversation lead to the first John Deere sale behind the Iron Curtain.
My pay off for all this was knowing how not an enemy "communists" were, an unpopular view when I came back. I was unable to secure a Top Secret clearance because of my trip when I was in the US Army headed for Viet Nam. That is how far ahead People to People was of the official culture.
Over the years, I have been active in the Rotary Internation exchange programs (high school and on the college level) and Portland Sister City. So folks wanting to volunteer, there are programs right here beyond spending two years in the Peace Corp.
And my current rants include that while the Peace Corp is still going, look what happened to Americorps budget this month! You think PBS is in trouble, look at what the lack of Americorp will do here at home.
posted 2 years, 2 months ago
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