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Returned Peace Corps Volunteers Find a Home at USDA

Caitrin Martin’s volunteer work in Senegal served as the inspiration for the Peace Corps 50th Anniversary print. Photo courtesy of the Peace Corps.

Caitrin Martin’s volunteer work in Senegal served as the inspiration for the Peace Corps 50th Anniversary print. Photo courtesy of the Peace Corps.

Peace Corps volunteers find themselves in a variety of locales covering a wide range of issues related to agriculture, education and health. And when they return, many of them have the opportunity to apply their Peace Corps experience to their professional lives back in the States. USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) boasts a large number of Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) working in a variety of program areas from scientific affairs to capacity building. In honor of Peace Corps Month and the 50th anniversary of the Corps, it is fitting to look at some of the Agency’s RPCVs and how their service in the Peace Corps has benefited their work at USDA. Read more »

Fort Bragg Food Bank

USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) teams up with the Mendocino Food and Nutrition Program to provide needy families with nutritious meals at the Fort Bragg Food Bank.

As Americans struggle to feed their families during these tough economic times, communities are relying on food banks to provide nutritional meals for disadvantaged households. For the northern California community of Mendocino County, residents in need are finding help in the Fort Bragg Food Bank, run by the Mendocino Food and Nutrition Program, a local nonprofit. Read more »

Stopping Hunger and Improving Nutrition When School is Out

Cross posted from the Let’s Move! blog:

In February of last year, I spoke at the National Press Club and outlined a vision and path for improving the health and well-being of kids across the nation by enhancing our nutrition assistance programs. I made a commitment that the Department of Agriculture (USDA) would continue to help bridge the nutrition gap when school is out because our efforts to combat hunger and improve nutrition cannot end when the school bell rings on the last day of the school week or year. Read more »

Turning an Eyesore into a Natural Beauty

This post is part of the Science Tuesday feature series on the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) blog. Check back each week as we showcase the stories and news from the agency’s rich science and research portfolio.

Researchers with USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) have teamed up with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and private consultants to come up with a way to turn a landfill—nobody’s idea of a beauty spot—into a little touch of green heaven, with greenhouse-gas-reducing benefits to boot. Read more »

Partners Launch No Kid Hungry in New Mexico

Staff from USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service Southwest regional office was pleased to join the national non-profit, Share Our Strength, in Albuquerque, for the launch of their No Kid Hungry campaign to end childhood hunger in New Mexico.

The No Kid Hungry campaign is a public-private partnership between a diverse coalition of non- profit groups, the Food and Nutrition Service, the state of New Mexico, Share our Strength and the New Mexico Collaboration to End Hunger. In New Mexico, only one-third of eligible children participate in the Summer Food Service Program and only a little over half of children who are eligible eat breakfast at school. Read more »

Rural Development Helps Tribal Communities Grow

As President Obama challenges Americans to win the future, we at USDA are implementing ways to do so by helping tribal communities across the country out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build our global competition. Starting in rural America, but more specifically within tribal communities, we see an amazing opportunity to improve the economic climate and provide a better tomorrow for today’s youth.

At the 2011 Reservation Economic Summit, I was able to showcase the programs we are employing through USDA’s Rural Development to better the lives of those living in rural America, and to support tribal economic development. As the summit rang in its 25th anniversary, the conversation was abuzz with ideas on how to spur economic development in Indian Country – and investing in our Nation’s rural infrastructure is a great place to start. Read more »