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Peace Corps Suspends Program in Gabon

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  • bobutne
    Peace Corps Director Gaddi H. Vasquez announced today that the Peace Corps will officially suspend its program in the African nation of Gabon effective August
    Message 1 of 4 , Jul 9, 2005
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      Peace Corps Director Gaddi H. Vasquez announced today that the Peace
      Corps will officially suspend its program in the African nation of
      Gabon effective August 31. The decision comes after a 2-year review
      of operations that showed significantly higher costs to support the
      volunteers in Gabon relative to other Peace Corps programs in
      Africa.

      "The Peace Corps regrets the necessity to suspend the program in
      Gabon after a 31-year partnership with its citizens. More than 1,460
      Americans have respectfully and honorably assisted the people of
      Gabon as Peace Corps volunteers through a long history, dating back
      to 1963 when the first group arrived to build schools in rural
      areas," said Director Vasquez.

      All Peace Corps volunteers in Gabon completed their primary projects
      in the sectors of health and HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention,
      education, and environmental education. As of July 5, all Peace Corps
      volunteers had completed their service and left the country.

      Factors contributing to the program suspension include the high cost
      of the Gabon program, weighing in at over three times as much as the
      average Peace Corps program in Africa, and a scarcity in finding host
      country counterparts to work with the volunteers and ensure their
      transition into the community — an element that is critical in the
      volunteers' success. In addition, a 2003 Inspector General report
      documented safety and security costs of $1 million that would be
      necessary to keep the program operating successfully. The Peace Corps
      will continue to assess the situation in Gabon and will look at the
      possibility of re-entry in the future.

      http://i-newswire.com/pr35288.html
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