As chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings is vital to the creation of a Peace Corps Commemorative.
More than 200,000 Peace Corps volunteers have served in 139 Third World countries since the agency's inception in 1961.
Peace Corps volunteers currently serve in 75 countries. Locals identify the services they most need (education, health, business development, environment, agriculture, etc.) and volunteers respond.
We celebrated 50 years last year. (I served in the Dominican Republic from 1967-69.) Now we hope to establish a privately funded commemorative near the National Mall.
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This bipartisan initiative (H.R. 854) is awaiting authorization from Hastings' committee. A similar bill passed the House unanimously two years ago.
The theme of this commemorative would be to honor the historical significance and the ideals upon which the Peace Corps was founded. The modest commemorative will be funded entirely by private donations and contain nothing elaborate.
We encourage Hastings to use his leadership and move this resolution to the full House for a vote soon. We hope his support can convert our dreams to the initial stages of fulfilling our goal this year. This is the right time!
Donna Kary, Richland