Tongablog

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H.R. 1066, The Peace Corps Expansion Act of 2009

Well, I’m home sick for the eighth day in a row. Scot now has the same stomach virus. We are definitely better than we were, but still far from where we would like to be! Getting sick here is just really brutal. At least I am well enough to surf the internet.. The latest of my political activism involves “H.R. 1066, The Peace Corps Expansion Act of 2009.” For more information, please visit http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c111:H.R.1066:. Honestly, it takes about 5 minutes to write your Congressional Representative. If you don’t know who it is, google it. Below is the letter I sent to Henry Brown (don’t even get me started on that guy.) It isn’t my best writing and is a bit dramatic, but I’m home with the flu. Please take a few minutes to send your own version of this letter. Thanks:)

My name is Karen Moldovan. I am a S.C. registered voter, currently serving in the U.S. Peace Corps. I am not sure as to your extent of knowledge about the Peace Corps. As a volunteer, I can tell you firsthand that it is an unbelievably difficult endeavor. Volunteers dedicate over two years of their lives, in service to our great nation. We go to serve in developing nations, as allies and counterparts. Volunteers work in all sectors, notably education, health, human services, infrastructure, environment, and business development. Living conditions are extremely challenging. Here in Tonga, I have experienced dengue fever, stomach parasites, months of eating no vegetables (seasonally they do not grow well) scorpion bites and sweltering heat. We live on very modest stipends. Post Peace Corps service, I will return to the U.S. shackled with student loan debt. As a federal employee, I believe that our government could relieve some of that federal student loan debt. My $6,000 “readjustment allowance” is truly inadequate for the myriad of needs we will face when returning to the U.S. As you know, $6,000 will not go far in today’s economy, especially when faced with unemployment upon return. If you look at the Japanese and Australian volunteer organizations similar to the Peace Corps, they provide a much more ample readjustment allowance for their citizens. The Peace Corps Expansion Act of 2009 is currently referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. I ask that you support this bill.

Thank you.

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