On November 16, 2023, 22 Peace Corps Trainees were sworn-in to begin their two-year service as education Volunteers in schools around Namibia. This 52nd group of Trainees to Namibia, arrived on August 30, and just completed their 12 weeks of pre-service training in Okahandja.
At the invitation of the Namibian government, Peace Corps Volunteers began serving in 1990. Since then, more than 1,800 American Volunteers have worked in various sectors, including education, health, and economic development. Volunteers live in Namibian communities, learn local languages, and integrate into the culture to foster world peace and friendship. Peace Corps Volunteers work alongside community members on locally prioritized projects that build relationships, promote knowledge exchange, and make a lasting and measurable impact.
“The U.S.-Namibia partnership is strong and diverse, built upon a foundation of meaningful people-to-people relationships forged in shared values including democracy, rule of law, and human rights. Peace Corps is a significant part of the overall U.S. presence in Namibia and is an important cornerstone of our friendship,” said Deputy Chief of Mission, Brandon Hudspeth
At the onset of the global COVID-19 pandemic, there were 126 Volunteers serving throughout every region of the country. As the country went into lockdown, all Volunteers were evacuated. Currently, Peace Corps has 14 health and economic development Volunteers serving in six regions of the country. This is the first group of Education Volunteers to return to Namibia since the global evacuation of Peace Corps Volunteers in March 2020 due to the pandemic. They will be in 22 schools across Namibia, placed in partnership with the Ministry of Education, Arts, and Culture.
The focus of pre-service training is for Trainees to engage in hands-on learning experiences, including working with members of the host community (Okahandja) to practice applying tools which add in developing effective partnerships between the Trainee and community. Trainees participated in intensive technical training on classroom management in schools, learned about the education, health, and economic sectors of Namibia; and current HIV/AIDS interventions, as well as intercultural sessions to enhance their understanding of the local cultures as a foundation for effective community integration. Each Trainee also learns one of the following local languages: Oshikwanyama, Rukwangali, Khoekhoegowab, Otjiherero, and Oshindonga.
This diverse group of Americans will conduct their service in rural and urban areas in seven regions throughout Namibia and will be there for two years. Their primary role will be supporting schools by teaching English, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics classes and mentoring students for academic success.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of U.S. Embassy in Namibia.