Peace Corps Director Carol Spahn Exchanges with President Talon on the Importance of Teaching English and Creating Economic Opportunities

(Cotonou | March 21, 2023) – As part of Peace Corps Director Carol Spahn’s visit to Benin to celebrate the 55th anniversary of Peace Corps’ partnership in the country, she met with the President of the Republic of Benin Patrice Talon, Benin’s Minister of Justice and Legislation Sévérin Quenum, and United States’ Ambassador to the Republic of Benin Brian Shukan in Cotonou on Tuesday, March 14. 

During the meeting, Director Spahn, President Talon, Minister Quenum, and Ambassador Shukan reflected on the long history of the Peace Corps in Benin and the importance of connecting across cultures. They discussed a range of shared priorities, including the importance of English education to support youth development and create economic opportunity. President Talon and Director Spahn also discussed the Peace Corps’ commitment to advance agriculture, health, and education in multiple regions across Benin, in conjunction with the Government of Benin, community counterparts, educators, technical skill advocates, and youth leaders.  

Peace Corps Director Carol Spahn also met with Ministers of Secondary Education, Technical and Vocational Training, and with Minister of Agriculture, Livestock, and Fishing, to discuss the importance of English teaching, as well as opportunities to support organic certifications and food security.   

Field visits also marked the Peace Corps Director’s visit. In the five departments of the country that she visited, she exchanged with American volunteers present, and conducted activities which allowed her to get in touch with Benin’s youth.  

Benin is one of the Peace Corps’ longest partner countries. The agency has maintained operations in the country since 1968 and more than 2,315 Volunteers have served to date. Peace Corps Benin currently has 19 volunteers working in the agriculture, education, and health sectors, and the Peace Corps committed to bringing more Volunteers to Benin.