The health of our Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) was among the many topics highlighted at Peace Corps Connect - Berkeley. Many RPCVs who come home facing an injury or illness stemming from their service face longstanding challenges and needs. They have felt forgotten and alone in their personal battle to get better.
NPCA (National Peace Corps Association) has established June 25th each year as Health Justice Awareness Day to further identify and raise the profile of members of the Peace Corps community who face medical challenges, build a nationwide support network and begin the long and difficult process of addressing the many health-related issues before us.
A very lively and passionate meeting was held at the home of SDPCA member Marjory on July 19 to brainstorm what we might do locally and nationally to advocate for our fellow RPCVs .
Here are some of the ideas we shared with the SDPCA board and welcome your feedback and participation:
1. Create a Health Justice Committee
2. Create a database of agencies in San Diego to help new members find the care they need.
3. Continue educating SDPCA about the issue and ways we can help.
To find out more I encourage you to visit the website for the group of volunteers who have a strong organization dedicated to this issue: healthjusticeforpeacecorpsvolunteers.org
Thank you to our RPCV friends who were willing to sit down and discuss this very important issue: Marjory Clyne, Robert Vryheid, Hank Davenport, Karen Lindquist, and Robert Opliger.