Thursday, December 25, 2008

Progress Report- Peace Corps Style


The Peace Corps has a quarterly report all volunteers are required to complete. It represents the lunacy of those people not on the front line to understand, justify, and manage. It is an attempt to quantify the unquantifiable. It is the Peace Corps version of body counts, school test scores, investor confidence levels, etc. The numbers are as meaningful as measuring how much you love someone.

Heretofore my Group 78 has been spared submitting this report due to changes in staff personnel, but now that we have a new director, she is asking for this report. What numbers should I write in the blanks? What grandiose claims do I make so that Congress and the American public continue to fund Peace Corps? Where is the space to write about how getting your hands dirty, living with others and sharing lifestyles does more to promote national security and ideals than bullets? Where do I write about the people I have met whose lives have been affected by those before me? Who would take the time to read it anyway? This is no way to measure what is really important. You know that biting into a homemade Christmas cookie tastes good. You just know it.

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