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The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

Joint Fact Sheet: Peace Corps and VSO Partnership on Volunteerism to Promote Global Development

“And I want to particularly say this to young people of every faith, in every country – you, more than anyone, have the ability to reimagine the world, to remake this world.”

-- President Barack Obama, June 4, 2009
“I want young people from this country to have the chance to really understand the challenges faced by people in very poor countries, by living and working alongside them to improve their lives.”

-- Prime Minister David Cameron, March 9, 2011

The partnership between Peace Corps and VSO will leverage the resources of both organizations to improve the lives of poor and marginalized people, and to promote the value of volunteering in global development.  Peace Corps and VSO will harness complementary strengths, share knowledge and collaborate on key development interests, building on our nations’ shared history of volunteerism.

Leaders in International Volunteerism for more than 50 Years
Peace Corps and VSO are leading global organizations that fight poverty by using the power of people and volunteers to bring about lasting change.  Both organizations are founded on an approach that puts people first, and fosters capacity building and knowledge exchange in a way that transforms poor and marginalised communities worldwide.  Peace Corps and VSO’s joint network of almost 10,000 currently serving volunteers in nearly 95 countries, combined with an alumni base of more than 250,000 former volunteers, will enhance global volunteerism efforts and create lasting change.

Complementing One Another, Building on Strengths
Peace Corps and VSO have informally collaborated for more than a decade through sharing training resources and collaborating on volunteer site assignments.  In line with best practice, the two organizations will capitalize on this joint work, thereby increasing the global impact of their efforts in the more than 25 countries where both organizations currently operate.  Volunteers from both organizations will work alongside local communities and organizations on development priorities, as well as supporting them in building a lasting legacy of local volunteerism, that will make a real and sustainable difference to the lives of poor people.

Increased Impact through Partnership

  • Peace Corps and VSO will promote volunteering and active citizenship. Through people to people exchanges, Peace Corps and VSO will support together the efforts of countries to develop their own volunteer programs to engage local citizens in shaping their communities and futures.
  • Peace Corps and VSO will address urgent development challenges in areas such as education, health, HIV/AIDS, youth development, gender, climate change and citizen participation by sharing knowledge, resources, and training capabilities to further enhance each organization’s current programming and training.
  • Peace Corps and VSO will collaborate on organizational effectiveness. By sharing best practice in training, systems and innovation, the partnership will enhance the effectiveness of both organizations.