Peace Corps

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Peace Corps,

agency of the U.S. government, whose purpose is to assist underdeveloped countries in meeting their needs for trained manpower. The Peace Corps was established in 1961 by executive order of President Kennedy; Congress approved it as a permanent agency within the Dept. of State the same year. Peace Corps volunteers serve for two-year periods. Currently volunteers serve in more than 70 countries in such areas as agriculture; the teaching of languages, mathematics, and science; vocational training; business and public administration; and natural resource development. In 1981 the Peace Corps was made an independent agency. The program now also sends volunteers to the former Soviet-bloc nations and Communist nations and tries to attract more people with technical training or special skills, particularly in agriculture. In 2005 volunteers were deployed in the United States for the first time, in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

Bibliography

See R. Carey, The Peace Corps (1970); B. K. Ashdoranner, A Moment in History: The First Ten Years of the Peace Corps (1971); L. Carter, Away from Home (1977); T. Z. Reeves, The Politics of the Peace Corps and Vista (1988); K. Schwarz, An Oral History of the Peace Corps (1991).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/

Peace Corps

U.S. agency devoted to assisting underdeveloped nations. [Am. Hist.: Van Doren, 575–576]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Peace Corps has a separate program called the Crisis Corps, created in 1996, to allow former volunteers with specific skills to volunteer again for short term assignments in disaster areas.
Lewis returned to Central America in August to undertake his duties as Crisis Corps coordinator for Nicaragua.
Crisis Corps), drawing on former volunteers to provide short-term

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