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President Obama signing the Kate Puzey Peace Corps Volunteer Protection Act of 2011 into law, November 21, 2011

 Thank you to everyone who supported the campaign and helped make this incredible achievement possible. Your support has led to a safer and stronger Peace Corps, and will positively impact and protect the lives of many Peace Corps Volunteers from this day forth. 

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For updates on our efforts to honor Kate’s memory by passing the “Kate Puzey Peace Corps Protection Act” to better support Peace Corps Volunteers who become whistleblowers or victims of violent crime, please follow our blog and join us on Facebook.

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Congressional Hearings on Peace Corps

On Wednesday, May 11th Lois Puzey – Kate’s mother – testified at the ‘Peace Corps at 50’ Hearing before the House Foreign Affairs Committee. Other witnesses on the panel included Harvard professor Dr. Karestan Koenen, trauma expert and RPCV survivor; Jessica Smochek, Survivor Resources Coordinator for First Response Action; and Jennifer Marsh, Services Director for RAINN, the nation’s leading anti sexual assault agency. Witnesses discussed systemic problems within the Peace Corps that have endangered Volunteers and called upon Congress to enact legislation for victims’ rights and whistleblower protection. The hearing was a great success, with strong pledges of support from Members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee (HFAC), and widespread media coverage. The hearing can be viewed in full here (with Lois Puzey’s speech starting at 43:30).

PLEASE HELP continue the push for legislation by contacting members of the HFAC and Senate Foreign Relations Committee and asking them to support victims’ rights and whistleblower legislation here.

 

Statement of Support

Please join us in supporting the “Catherine Puzey Peace Corps Volunteer Protection Act of 2011″ to help ensure that all future Peace Corps volunteers are protected, and that PCV victims and their families receive appropriate care and respect. We ask that Congress and the Peace Corps continue to work together to see that legislation is within the next few months, and we appreciate your support in helping us to see this critical legislation passed into law:

 

“Light A Candle For Kate Vigil”

On Friday, March 11th – the 2nd anniversary of Kate Puzey’s death – we held a vigil to honor Kate and the sacrifices of all other Peace Corps volunteer victims in front of the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. It was a beautiful ceremony and we greatly appreciate everyone who came out in the cold, and also those who lit a candle for Kate in many other locations around the world (as noted on our Facebook page!)

In honor of Kate and continuance of last year’s tradition, we hope that everyone will also take some positive action this month that embodies her spirit—reaching out to family or friends, helping someone in need, or taking a stand for a just cause. This follows the vigils and day of service that were held on March 11th, 2010, the first anniversary.

 

Kate Puzey Memorial Fund

The Kate Fund is dedicated to continuing her work to support girls and women in Benin, allowing them opportunities for a brighter future by funding special ‘Girl Empowerment Camps’ in conjunction with the Peace Corps and local communities.

Click here for more information regarding the Kate Puzey Memorial Fund