« PreviousContinue »
take a pledge, you might say-not an actual pledge but make an indication—that they want to abide by our Peace Corps standards of living, of working with the people in the foreign country, of unostentatious living, and so on.
Now, in the foreign countries themselves, for example, the Philippine Islands, our Peace Corps volunteers will be working in towns and villages the closest of which, under the present plan, will be over 100 miles from Manila. So, physically, we are in this specific case locating our Peace Corps volunteers not in the capital cities, not in the places where there is already a great accumulation of Americans, but in places where there are relatively few, if any, Americans. I was at a number of villages in the Philippines where our Peace Corps representative has already selected a house, for example, in which two, three, or four Peace Corps persons would be living. This is a native house; it is a comfortable house, but it is a Filipino house that had been built many years before we arrived there.
We would rent such a structure, and our people would live in it. It is a native structure. It is certainly not ostentatious. It is a structure that has long been in this village. They would live in this house; they would teach in the schools in this village and in the neighboring area to this village. They would be there as a group of four, by themselves. They would be visited periodically by the Peace Corps staff representative and others, just to make sure that everything is going well, but they would not be living in close proximity to other Americans.
POSSIBILITY OF REFRESHER COURSES As a matter of fact, they will be living in conditions so isolated in some cases that we have thought seriously of the possibility of bringing them together for in-service refresher training courses overseas, maybe every 6 months, where we would bring these people to a central location where they could see one another, exchange experiences, receive additional training or suggestions about their work, and so on.
A refresher, if you will, program may be over a weekend or for a week. It will be given to them to reinvigorate them for the work they would then go back and carry on.
In each country we are selecting the actual places where they would work. So we know in most cases they will not be working in these centers you are talking about, where there are already a lot of Americans.
AVOIDING OSTENTATIOUS LIVING Senator CHURCH. Are you contemplating any restrictions on such things as automobiles ?
Mr. SHRIVER. Oh, yes.
Senator CHURCH. I know that kind of regulation would vary from place to place.
Mr. SHRIVER. Yes.
Senator CHURCH. And you could not lay down any firm and fast rule, but there is nothing quite so conspicuous in some of the cities in the world, in the narrow, twisting streets that you find in the Arab and Asian world, as ostentatious American automobiles.
Mr. SHRIVER. Yes. Well, we intend that no Peace Corps volunteers would have automobiles or transportation of that type unless it was essential for their work.
If, for example, we had village workers who went from village to village repairing equipment, and they needed to travel in a jeep to do this work, along with Indian counterparts, for example, since you mentioned Asia, they might be assigned a jeep to do that, if it required a jeep to do it.
Otherwise, the most that they would have would be a bicycle or motor scooter or something like that. There is no intention of supplying any of them with automobiles except in connection with their work, and this would be only in the very rarest of cases.
So we do have rules of that kind. But we also have rules of unostentatious dress, unostentatious living, unostentatious expenses, and also unostentatious travel.
Our people will not be traveling around the Philippines, so to speak, first class. They would be traveling around as the people, the majority of the people, in the Philippines travel or in any other country.
SUPPLY OF CAPITAL TO DEPEND ON PARTICULAR SITUATIONS
I would like the record to show, however, Senator, that in some cases it may be advisable for Peace Corps purposes and for our national purposes to accept requests from foreign countries to supply teachers, for example, in universities, and in many cases these universities are located in larger centers of population. In Thailand, as you know, the biggest university is Chulalongkorn, which is in Bangkok.
English is a compulsory course in that university. There are 6,000 students, and they have 25 teachers of English.
They have asked us to help them by giving them some English language teachers who could supplement the instruction now being given in Chulalongkorn University.
Senator CHURCH. Now, in a case like that, will the Peace Corps be furnishing the personnel and taking care of the pay and the living allowances of the personnel involved or will it be making any contribution to any given project other than the maintenance of the personnel that it contributes ?
Mr. SHRIVER. No, sir; except that we have a rule of thumb that we are using now that we are willing to supply up to $1,000 of capital resources if that kind of money is necessary for the Peace Corps volunteer to carry out his or her work.
For example, we were asked to supply a ceramics instructor to a particular country for work in a research institute. We were asked to supply other people to this same institute. Now, that ceramics instructor has to have the tools to teach with, the ovens and the forms and so on, and they specifically said that if we were able to supply them with that person that they wanted us to send equipment with him. Well, now, that equipment might cost $100, it might cost $300 or $400, up to $1,000, and we have as a matter of administrative discretion decided we would supply such tools of the trade.
The teachers going to the Philippine Islands will have to have teaching materials. In each case they might amount to no more than $20 or $30 worth of teaching materials, but we have agreed to supply those.
So we are willing to supply some capital costs as long as they are connected with the actual work that the volunteer is doing, but that is all.
We will not supply, for example, giant roadbuilding equipment or anything of that kind—big capital installations. Those would still have to come under an ICA grant.
Senator Church. I think you have made very clear the living conditions you contemplate for your Peace Corps volunteers abroad, and also the extent to which you will finance the tools of the trade, so to speak.
What about traveling to these remote areas of the world? Will the Peace Corps volunteers travel as other Government personnel, first class, or has that actually been worked out in your thinking?
Mr. SHRIVER. Well, it varies from country to country, but I would say that the general thrust is to travel the way the ordinary people do in the country.
In Tanganyika, for example, that country has agreed to pay the cost of travel for our people within that country, and I assume that they are intending that they travel in ordinary conveyances. I do not know whether there is a first, second, and third class in the country, but they are going to cover the costs.
Senator CHURCH. What about the transoceanic travel and that kind of thing?
Mr. SHRIVER. That would be tourist, and in connection, even, for example, with asking people to come to these training centers, like the one that opens on Monday in Texas, in our letters to them we have recommended to them that they come by tourist airplane or by coach railroad transportation.
We gave them that alternative in this case because we did not know how each one of them would be able to get there, so we said either coach on the railroad or tourist in an airplane.
Senator CHURCH. Thank you very much, Mr. Shriver.
RELATIONSHIP OF PEACE CORPS TO THE HOST GOVERNMENT: EXAMPLE OF
Senator GORE. What will be the relationship of the Peace Corps, Mr. Shriver, to the Government of Colombia, for example? Will you be under formal agreement with the Government by which you would be permitted to undertake the Peace Corps program within that country, or will it be an agreement between an ambassador in a country and that country, or will it be a written document, or will you deal on a government-to-government basis?
What is the relationship and how is it to be handled? Does the Peace Corps itself handle it, or is this a diplomatic arrangement?
I asked a number of questions only to indicate the range of my curiosity.
Mr. SHRIVER. Well, Senator, perhaps if we discussed one or two of the specific projects that have been agreed upon
Senator GORE. I think that would be good. Mr. SHRIVER (continuing). It would be helpful to illustrate some of the different ways.
Let us take, for example, the Colombian one first, which you asked about. In that case, before the Peace Corps was even founded, CARE had been in negotiations with the Government of Colombia.
The Government of Colombia, I believe, had initiated these arrangements, these discussions, trying to get CARE to come down there and run-manage--the rural development training camp for Colombian citizens. The objective of the Colombian Government, as I understand it, was to train Colombians in their twenties and thirties to go out and work in the rural areas of Colombia and raise the standard of living in village settlements. After the Peace Corps was established, CARE and the Colombian Government agreed it was beneficial to this program if the Peace Corps could become a part of it. The agreements between CARE, however, and the Colombian Government had already been negotiated when we arrived on the scene at that point, and we indicated we would be happy to participate if a viable program or project could be worked out.
So CARE, the Colombian Government, and ourselves—and we, incidentally, operating as a part of the State Department-effected a tripartite agreement, if you will, whereby we agreed to supply 65 Americans, a number equal to the Colombians involved, to train them here before they went to South America, and then to have them incorporated into this training program in Colombia.
Senator GORE. I did not quite understand you. You mean a number of Colombian citizens are involved? You said about 65. Could you describe this?
Mr. SHRIVER. There were 65 Colombians in the original program before we ever got in it.
Senator GORE. Are they here in the United States?
Now, they said to us: "Would you be able to supply 65 Americans, that is, a number of Americans equal to the number of Colombians?" There are 65 Colombians, and there will be 65 Americans. We said we would try to do so, and we have agreed to do so.
So we are now training, or will begin on Monday the training of 65 Americans who will go down to Colombia, and when they arrive in Colombia they will go to this training center established under the jurisdiction and management of CARE, and with the approval of the Colombian Government.
At that training center in Colombia there will be 65 Colombians, so that our two groups will then be joined, you might say. They will be under the supervision of experts from CARE who have had long experience in community development and rural work.
Our people will get additional training in Colombia, along with these Colombians, these 65 Colombians, and after they have jointly graduated from this training school operated by CARE, these 130 men will go out into the rural areas of Colombia in teams of two, prol)ably, or four-Americans and Colombians working together in rural development work.
Senator GORE. How long is this training program?
Mr. SHRIVER. The training program in this country is 3 months and in that country it is 1 month.
Senator GORE. One month?
COSTS OF COLOMBIAN PROJECT
Senator GORE. Do you compensate CARE for conducting this training?
Mr. SHRIVER. We do compensate them, and they pay some of the costs, too.
In this particular case, CARE is bearing almost 15 percent of the total cost of this project, so that here is the case where the taxpayers, you might say, are getting a little bit more for their money than, perhaps, we anticipated. CARE is paying for part of this and the Colombian Government is bearing some of the expense. So that the actual cost of a volunteer in this project to the American taxpayer is very small in terms of overseas operations.
Senator GORE. Now, when these teams go out will they represent the Colombian Government, CARE, or the Peace Corps ?
Mr. SHRIVER. They will be CARE-Peace Corps workers. The project has been approved by the Colombian Government, but they will be CARE-Peace Corps workers.
Senator GORE. Will the natives of Colombia have the same status, or will they receive compensation from CARE or from the Colombian Government?
Mr. SHRIVER. I am not certain of the answer to that, but they will not get it from us.
Our people will be paid and handled in a way comparable to that in which the Colombians are handled in terms of finances, so that there will not be any distinction between an American and a Colombian working together in a particular village, so far as their dress or their living standards or their financial compensation in Colombia is concerned.
I do not happen to know, I can get the answer, however, to your question-about whether the Colombian Government is paying the expenses of these Colombians or whether CARE is. I would suspect that it is joint.
This project, Senator Gore, is outlined in some detail, not complete detail, on pages 37 through 39 of the presentation which we prepared for members of this committee and the Congress.
NEGOTIATION OF PHILIPPINES PROJECT
Senator GORE. Coming back to my original question-
Mr. SHRIVER. That is one case. I would not say that is a typical case, but it is at least one of the arrangements we have negotiated.
Now, in the case of the Philippine Government, there is no intervening private voluntary agency like CARE. The arrangements there