Archive for December, 2010

In Memoriam: Dr. Sammy

December 30th, 2010 by admin

Chief Dr. Sammy Enyong, warmly known as “Dr. Sammy”, passed away in Yaoundé, Cameroon, on December 25, 2010. Dr. Sammy proudly presented himself as a “moving monument” of Peace Corps Cameroon because he was a pioneer beneficiary of Peace Corps in Cameroon: Peace Corps Volunteers trained him as a Primary School Teacher, and again as an Agricultural Extension Agent. Dr. Sammy worked as Associate Director of the Education program for 19 years (1987 – 2007). During this period, he supported over 400 Volunteers to serve Cameroonians in various education projects – mathematics/science/computer literacy, English, vocational education, special education, rural, environmental and HIV/AIDS education. Dr. Sammy retired from PCC in January 2007. In his retirement letter, he wrote, “I will continue to remember Peace Corps and particularly the Volunteers I had worked with for the rest of my life!”

Dr. Sammy’s area of specialization was education administration and management, research methods and statistics. Prior to joining Peace Corps, he was a primary-school teacher in Cameroon for four years and a high school Principal/Teacher Trainer and University Lecturer in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria for 10 years. Upon his return to Cameroon he became a University Lecturer in the Ministry of Higher Education (1986-1988). Following his retirement from Peace Corps he worked as Vice Principal at a private Yaoundé institution.

Dr. Sammy Enyong was a cherished member of the Peace Corps community and leaves to mourn a loving extended family and children.

Opportunity Africa

December 9th, 2010 by admin

детско обзавежданеOpportunity Africa’s mission is to enable Cameroonian students to achieve their educational dreams in order to overcome poverty and improve health outcomes. To accomplish this goal, Opportunity Africa provides educational scholarships to academically talented students in Cameroon who come from economically disadvantaged backgrounds.

To find out more please visit http://opportunityafrica.org/

Cameroon RPCV named U.S. ambassador to The Gambia

December 4th, 2010 by bobebill

(Based on a report by Maxwell Mogensen, Staff Writer for the Lewiston Sun-Journal)

Pamela White, an Auburn native and graduate of Edward Little High School and the University of Maine, has been appointed by President Barack Obama as ambassador to The Gambia.

She is the first University of Maine alum to be appointed to an ambassadorship, according to the University’s Alumni Association. She is also the second woman ever from Maine to serve as a U.S. ambassador. (The late Margaret Joy Tibbetts, who served as ambassador to Norway under Lyndon Johnson, was the first.)

On November 17, 2010, White was sworn in by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who delighted the audience with personal stories of experiences that the two had shared in Africa. The administrator of USAID, Dr. Rajiv Shah, also spoke at the swearing-in.

“They nominate an ambassador from USAID once every three or four years,” said White on Monday, “so it’s quite an honor.”

White was born in Lewiston in 1948 and grew up in Auburn. She graduated from Edward Little in 1967 and from the University of Maine at Orono in 1971 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.

White’s public service career spans more than 35 years. From 1971 to 1973, White served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Cameroon in the village of Saa. In 1978, she joined the U.S. Agency for International Development, where she worked as a community liaison officer in Burkino Faso. She subsequently served as deputy executive officer in Senegal and Haiti, and from 1989 to 1998, she was the executive officer in Haitian, Egyptian and South African Missions.

White has worked in Washington, D.C., where she was USAID’s deputy director for East Africa from 1999 to 2001, and in Mali, where she served as the organization’s deputy and mission director.

During her time in Mali, according to a statement released by the U.S. State Department, White’s leadership was “credited with major improvements in the lives of the Malian people. During her tenure, the number of girls in primary school tripled (and) the number of elected women leaders increased by 200 percent.” For her work, “she was awarded the highest decoration given to foreigners” by the Malian government, the Ordre National de Mali, the statement said.

Following her work in Mali, White was appointed as USAID’s mission director for Tanzania in 2005, and then for Liberia in 2008. Upon learning of her appointment as ambassador to The Gambia, a Monrovian daily newspaper published an editorial entitled “In Praise of Pamela White,” lauding her years of service in Liberia, particularly her work in improving that country’s educational system. “Miss White, during her time in Liberia, was the personification of her country’s aid for international development,” the editorial read. “There was a time when American aid workers were referred to as ‘The Ugly American.’ Pamela came and took the ugliness away from the American faces.”

White is enthusiastic and excited about her new role. “We’re not only a tolerant nation, but a giving nation,” she said. The Gambia, which takes its name from the Gambia River, is a West African nation smaller than the state of Connecticut. The country has a population of about 1.8 million, and the per capita GDP is roughly $700. The country has a majority Muslim population.

“We need to make sure that the world knows that we can be, and should be, working with tolerant Muslim nations. And The Gambia is certainly a tolerant nation,” White said. She also spoke about the role of American aid projects in the developing world.

In January, White attained the rank of career minister, the highest rank within the Foreign Service.

White has received a master’s degree in international development from the School for Intetrnational Training in Brattleboro, Vt., and she is a graduate of the international development program at the Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Washington, D.C. In 2007, she was awarded the University of Maine’s Bernard Lown Alumni Humanitarian Award, which recognizes dedication to the creation of a benevolent, peaceful society and perpetuation of a caring, nurturing civilization.

White is married to Steven Cowper, a member of the Foreign Service. She has two sons, Patrick and Kristopher, who live in Washington, D.C. She is the daughter of Richard and Muriel Murphy of Auburn.

RPCV returns to Cameroon after almost 30 years

December 1st, 2010 by bobebill

After 30 years, ex-Peace Corps volunteer Richard Knutson returns to Cameroon with his wife, Kathy, to visit schools and deliver One World Futbols. Despite the distance and long absence, Knutson has maintained the friendships and connections he made in Cameroon when he volunteered there from 1978-1981. Photo: Ngueuliebou Frederic (from the Huffington Post)