It is my pleasure to take part in this swearing in today. Since arriving in Botswana in February, I’ve met many volunteers as I’ve traveled the country and taken part in various events. I look forward to doing the same with you throughout your service.
Today you are undertaking an important and serious commitment by swearing in and taking the oath of service as Peace Corps Volunteers. You are swearing into a legacy of service, joining the over 235,000 Volunteers who, over the past 58 years, have done as you have done—suspended their lives in the United States, leaving their friends and families to serve where they are needed, under conditions of hardship, and with the flexibility required to be of help to the people of their communities.
While their backgrounds and experiences have each been unique, they each stood up to make a difference in the world and share their special gifts.
Today, you are joining over 7,000 volunteers in 62 countries currently serving, who began their volunteer experience like you with hope, some trepidation, and a strong commitment to serve the people of another country to make the world a better place.
You will be the face of America in your communities, sharing American values and traditions. Through your service, you have a tremendous opportunity to dispel myths and build bridges between Americans and Batswana. Over the past 3 months, you have been given the tools to do this, but the most important tool you have is you – put all your talents to good use to lift-up this country.
To swear in today is to pledge and promise to yourself, to your friends and family at home, to the people around you today, to The Peace Corps, to the people of the United States, and to the people of Botswana that you take this privileged opportunity to continue the legacy of service.
Be a role model and model the change that you want to see in the world every day you are here in Botswana.