The first Peace Corps Volunteers in Sierra Leone arrived in 1962, just a year after the organization was founded. There was a consistent presence until 1994 when the conflict in the country became too dangerous and the program suspended. Happily, partially due to intense lobbying by the Friends of Sierra Leone the organization decided to resume the program and the first cohort has just completed their first year with a second starting training now. I can’t wait to meet some of them and their families next week at our meeting.
One thing that amazes me is that several of the current volunteers are blogging. Certainly communications are very different than they were in my time what with cell phones. That said, from reading the blogs and speaking with other recent volunteers who served in other nearby countries, much is still the same.
If you are interested in knowing more about what life is like today for a Sierra Leonean Peace Corps Volunteer there are a bunch of blogs to explore here. Two I’ve especially from the first cohort are: