Modeled after the successful Peace Corps program, CorpsAfrica will recruit men and women from developing countries of Africa to move to high-poverty communities within their own country. Each volunteer will stay in a host community for one year to create and support small projects that eliminate barriers to economic growth and prosperity.
Objectives of CorpsAfrica:
- To give Africans the transformative and career-boosting benefits of the Peace Corps. Build up pride and confidence through national service. Promote community and cross-regional volunteerism.
- To provide training, job skills, and an understanding of poverty that only comes from living it. CorpsAfrica Volunteers will be the next generation of NGO staffers, government officials, academics, business leaders, journalists, philanthropists, parents, …
- To reduce poverty (#1 objective – hands down!) Training will focus on identification, measurement, causes, and manifestations of poverty. And humility. Volunteer placement will be based on need. Projects will address unique factors of poverty affecting individual communities.
- To promote collaboration and shared best practices of diverse development partners, including host country government (at all levels), civil society, private sector (domestic and international), academia, donors and foundations, mass media, Diaspora, etc.
- To actualize and demonstrate the multiplied effect of focusing on women and girls.
- To serve as a model follower of best practices for measuring impact – and to share results and lessons learned with development partners that follow our work.
- To serve as an example of accountability and transparency – and to encourage bolder philanthropy toward poverty in Africa.
- First and foremost, the poorest individuals and communities will directly benefit from the projects that they themselves identify, design and manage. They will also develop meaningful and, ideally, long-lasting relationships with fellow citizens from other parts of their countries.
- CorpsAfrica Volunteers will benefit from the tremendous satisfaction that comes from helping others live better lives. They will also gain new skills, contacts, and experiences that can lead to careers in public service. CorpsAfrica will cultivate a new generation of civic leaders who could continue to work with their communities in different settings long after their service has been completed. Volunteers will also develop deep understanding of the people and of poverty in their countries.
- All international development efforts can benefit from the lessons that will be learned from the spectrum of grassroots projects that CorpsAfrica Volunteers will implement, study and improve until effective models are achieved.
Women and Girls:
Many studies have shown that women and girls suffer disproportionately in poverty and that empowering women and girls has a synergistic impact on creating lasting social change. We seek to maintain a 60 percent ratio of women to men because we expect female volunteers will be more effective at reaching out to women and girls in their communities and including them in project designs.