Email Newsletter for February 2009
Greetings from the West Cascade Peace Corps Association!
In this edition of our electronic newsletter, you'll find:
March 9: Board Meeting at 7pm at the home of Artis Spriggs.
March 13: Bimonthly Potluck at 6pm at the home of Rob and Mary
Dwan, 887 Sunset Dr., Springfield. Our presenter will be Hannah
Klausman who will share her Peace Corps experiences from Mongolia.
Please join us and bring a dish to share.
March 13: Carnaval Brazil from 7pm until 1am at Cozmic Pizza. See the attached flyer for more information.
March 17: The Annual Chef's Night Out fundraiser benefiting Food for Lane County is Tuesday, March 17th at the Hult Center. Join your fellow RPCVs for some tasty morsels and to help clean up after the big event. Plan to arrive at 8:30 on the 6th Street entrance and stay for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. WCPCA has traditionally been a part of this is a wonderful community event. Please RSVP to Shannon Micheel (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you plan to attend. We hope for at least 20 volunteers.
August 21-23: 2009 Regional Campout will be held at Bridge Creek, a group site in the Wenatchee National Forest, with SEAPAX as host. More information can be found at the SEAPAX website.
COMPUTER CLASSES: The Communications Coordinator (that's me!) is going to be running an "Introduction to HTML and Webpage Design" class in April. This class is free to all members, and the only requirement is a familiarity with computers and the internet. You don't need to be a computer whiz to make a webpage, so if you are interested, contact email@example.com. Depending on the level of interest, more classes may follow. Some potential classes are: Making the Most of the Internet, Advanced Webpage Design, Using Spreadsheets, and Using Microsoft Access (a database). If you are interested in taking a computer class, want to suggest the subject for a class or would be interested in teaching a class (on any subject), please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 4th annual Oregon Asian-American Film Festival is scheduled for April 17-19 at the Bijou Theater in Eugene Oregon. The Film Festival is to show case up and coming Asian film directors, producers, and actors and actresses, and educate the general public on Asian culture as seen through documentaries, shorts and feature films. Like "Slumdog", you can see Asian talent that you would not see on "American Idol". Anyone interested can contact email@example.com.
SPRING FUNDRAISER: The spring fundraiser at Mekala's was a huge success! Thanks to everyone who joined us! There were a few more attendees than anticipated, but despite the cramped atmosphere, everyone appeared to have a good time. A full report on the fundraiser will be available in the minutes of March's board meeting.
NORTHWEST RPCV GROUPS REGIONAL MEETING: The RPCV groups regional meeting was held in Eugene on Saturday, February 21. Representatives from Seattle, Portland, Boise, and, of course, Eugene shared their plans and projects after a wonderful potluck lunch hosted by West Cascade Peace Corps Association. Among the topics discussed were how to get RPCV's involved in groups, mentoring newly returned PCV's, fundraising decisions, financial support for the regional representative, and funding for the Peace Corps.
The meeting was very productive and helped to solidify relationships
among the participants. There are three regional meetings per year.
The next regional meeting is in May and is planned for Boise, Idaho.
The Seattle group will host the regional camp out and the regional
meeting August 21-23. A more detailed summary of this meeting is available below.
UO grad Jacki Icenogle returns home after serving in Mozambique
"At first they were terrified of this big, tall, white woman..."
Former PC Tanzania Country Director leads OSU Extension Service in
Multnomah and Washington counties.
Peace Corps a winner in Obama budget
The Washington Post reports that Obama's $3.5 trillion proposed
budget, the State Department will get more funding for the Peace Corps and
enough to "significantly increase" the size of the Foreign Service.
Is the recession boosting Peace Corps?
At the bottom of this recent press release from Peace Corps it says,
"Applications to serve in the Peace Corps have increased 16 percent
this past year, the largest boost over the past five years."
Peace Corps Online: February 2009 newsletter
The full text of the minutes is available on the website.
Board members present: Wayne Thompson, Rolly Thompson, Rob Dwan,
Evangelina Sundgrenz, Jack Meacham, James Cloutier, Shannon Micheel,
Michael Kresko, and Felicia Kenney
Treasurer: The Board agreed that Rob and/ or Dorothy, in
consultation with Jack, if possible, have permission to sell the
bond with Edward Jones when/ if necessary.
Communications:The new business cards distributed to board
The board also had numerous positive comments on the new web page
design and thanks Felicia for all her creative efforts.
Finally, the board would like to acknowledge Dorothy Soper and
Felicia for the energy and detail they put into the West Cascade
Membership Directory. It will prove to be useful to the board and
membership as well.
Partnership Project: The board discussed which projects to fund
and each member cast a vote. The decision was to split the $1000 for
the Guatemala and Tanzania projects from the PCVs from OR.
Information about these projects is now posted on the website under
Shannon will develop a rough draft for a standardized scoring
formula to determine funding such as, sustainability, life saving
resources, community contribution percentage, completion potential,
size of grant.
Regional meeting: reviewed agenda for regional meeting on
February 21st 12-5pm. WCPCA is providing a potluck lunch and lodging
for several out of town representatives.
Fundraiser dinner: Feb 21st to raise money for partnership
projects, Mekala's 6:30 pm buffet. Felicia will post and send out
email announcement and Wayne will receive RSVPs. $20 agreed to
charge / $12 for food and $8 partnership project.
Felicia will devote a page on website to Beryl and her memorial
Next Board Meeting: Monday, March 9, 7:00pm, home of Artis Spriggs.
Next Potluck: Friday, March 13th, at the home of Rob and Mary Dwan,
6:00 pm. Presentation: Hannah Klausman, Mongolia, 2006-2008
Minutes by Michael
As of 2/10/09 WCPCA has 83 members with two new members joining in
Summary of the western regional meeting of the affiliated groups of
the National Peace Corps Association
February 21, 2009, Eugene, OR
This regional meeting was attended by representatives of RPCV
organizations in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho. Other states
included in the western region are California, Alaska, Hawaii,
Nevada, Montana and the US territories in the Pacific.
Attending this meeting:
WCPCA members and guests: Joe Hindman, NPCA board member who
represents the western region, Wayne Thompson, James Cloutier,
Shannon Micheel, Vern Delk, Dale Dow, Justin Overdevest, Artis
Spriggs, Rosa Sakamishi, Bob Watada, Rolly Thompson, Evangelina
Sundgrenz, Dorothy Soper
Members of other western region organizations: Richard Ireland of
the Columbia River RPCA, Portland, OR, Sam Greer from Boise, Idaho, Aileen Lie, Paulette Thompson (Seattle liaison to the NPCA board),
and Joana Ramos from SEPAX, the Seattle, WA, RPCV organization.
We met in the Community Room at EWEB's headquarters at noon. WCPCA
provided a potluck luncheon. Joe Hindman presided at the meeting.
Below are highlights of the meeting. No attempt was made to
record all of the details of the meeting.
Each RPCV organization represented gave a report of its
activities over the last year. One item of note is that each now
distributes its newsletter electronically.
We discussed how each organization defines a returned
volunteer. Is it someone who served a minimum amount of time?
Successfully completed training? No consensus was reached but none
of the groups has a problem with this question.
We discussed ideas for attracting new members and retaining
current ones. We agreed that its helpful to have a range of
activities that will appeal to different age groups and family
configurations. Families with children seem to like picnics and
other active programs. Being in parades attracts people in
general. Virtual activities and pub nights were recommended for
younger RPCVs. Potlucks seems to appeal to all ages but a little
less so to younger members.
Everyone felt that the PC should be forthcoming to give RPCV
organizations the names of volunteers who are completing their
service. We noted the recently published directory of RPCVs from
the national organization.
For organizations planning to write grant proposals, checking
with the Friends of Malawi was recommended.
We discussed the funding of active PC projects through the Peace
Corps Partnership program. We understand that this must be the
channel to fund any PC project now.
We discussed the pros and cons of having a 501(c)(3) status
with the IRS. SEPAX has chosen to be a "registered nonprofit
charitable group" with the IRS as an alternative. We learned the
basis for this decision.
There was a suggestion that the NPCA put all of the affiliated
organizations under its umbrella thus letting them become 501(c)(3) organizations without making an individual application. We
Sam Greer reminded us that there is an existing agreement among
the organizations of the western region that each group will
contribute annually to the travel expenses of the regional
representative. These expenses are typically $1,200 to $1,500 per
Participation is voluntary. The typical amount contributed is $1
per member. Contributions are made directly to the representative. It's not clear whether all of the RPCV organizations in the
western region are aware of this agreement.
We discussed the PC's funding from Congress. We agreed that we
would like to see an emphasis on improving the quality of existing
PC programs before the general expansion of the PC.
We discussed briefly who might be the new PC director.
Joe and others identified the current initiatives of the NPCA. They are:
- More Peace Corps campaign
- Raising money for the 50th anniversary celebration in all of its facets
- Seeking $25 million in grants to create an endowed fund of which the income would provide ongoing funding for its activities
- Seeking $500,000 from the Gates Foundation to fund PC projects in agriculture
- Reorganizing the website
- Regional meeting in May, 2009, in Boise or Spokane
- Campout August 21-23, 2009, in Washington near Leavenworth in the Cascades; host group is SEPAX in Seattle
- Regional meeting, January, 2010, Portland
- Regional meeting, May, 2010, Seattle
- Campout, August, 2010, host would be the Portland, Eugene or Boise group
- September, 2011, celebration of the 50th anniversary, Washington DC
We adjourned shortly after 4:00 pm and planned to gather at 6:00 pm
at Mekala's Restaurant for a fundraising dinner organized by WCPCA.
Summary by Dorothy Soper, WCPCA