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The Minister of Education and Science of Georgia, Mikheil Chkhenkeli, together with the Deputy Ambassador of the USA to Georgia, Ryan Harker Harris, participated in the opening ceremony of the new office of "Peace Corps" in Georgia. The minister addressed the audience and presented a certificate of gratitude to the representatives of "Peace Corps - Georgia" for their special contribution to the development of the education system. In his speech, Mikheil Chkhenkeli thanked the US government, as a strategic partner of Georgia, for the most important contribution to the country's development through many years of fruitful cooperation.
Mikheil Chkhenkeli: "It is a great honour for me to participate in the opening ceremony of the new office of "Peace Corps - Georgia".
Allow me to take this opportunity to talk about the long and fruitful cooperation with the United States of America as our strategic partner in the field of education, which is highly appreciated by the government and people of Georgia.
Over the years, the support of the education system of Georgia by the United States government is in full compliance with the country's long-term goals in the direction of system development.
I would especially like to emphasize the importance of the programs implemented by the "Peace Corps" in Georgia, which support the development of existing educational institutions and organizations.
The Georgian government expressed its desire to host Peace Corps volunteers back in the 1990s, and as a result, today we have a history of cooperation spanning more than two decades. Since 2001, more than 900 volunteers have served in the Peace Corps in Georgia. I would like to highlight the hard work and efforts of each American volunteer who over the years shared knowledge and skills based on Western culture and values with the Georgian society, which contributed to building a better future. This is what makes the work of the Peace Corps so important.
Unfortunately, the Covid pandemic has put us in front of great challenges and has hindered the implementation of "Peace Corps" programs and other equally important projects in Georgia. I am happy that these programs will be renewed once again, and the next group of volunteers is expected to arrive in the country in February 2023.
The Ministry of Education and Science of Georgia has been successfully cooperating with "Peace Corps" for many years and I believe that this cooperation will continue fruitfully in the future.
I am happy to present a certificate of gratitude to the Ministry of Education and Science of "Peace Corps - Georgia" for the special contribution to the development of the education system of Georgia.
Peace Corps Georgia's new office opening event was attended by Scott Bielly, Associate Director of Global Operations of Peace Corps, Sarah Deitch, Global Director of Short-Term Support Program, and Jeffrey Goveia, Director of Peace Corps Georgia, among other esteemed guests.
Within the framework of cooperation between the Ministry of Education and Science of Georgia and "Peace Corps - Georgia", programs of "English language teaching", "Short-term support" and "Individual and organizational development" are implemented.
It should be noted that in 2018-2020, up to 85 English language volunteer teachers served in public schools of 11 regions of Georgia. Volunteers worked with public school students and helped local English language teachers achieve their professional goals. Within the framework of the "Short-Term Support Program", the Peace Corps volunteers also helped the employees of vocational colleges and resource centres, students and interested persons in developing their English language skills, amongst other important things.
Currently, the activities of volunteers in Georgia are temporarily suspended due to the global pandemic. "Peace Corps - Georgia" volunteers will arrive in the country in February 2023.
Peace Corps was established in 1961 by the US President, John Kennedy, to support peace and friendship in the world. In various countries of the world, Peace Corps volunteers, in cooperation with local partners, work at schools, non-profit and non-governmental organizations, with entrepreneurs, in the fields of youth development, public health, business, information technology, agriculture and environmental protection, for the development of the host community.