Tonight NBC News featured a “Making a Difference” segment about midlife women serving in the Peace Corps. As youngsters in 1961, many of them felt the call when President John Kennedy announced the formation of the Peace Corps. At the time life led them in other directions, but now they are ready and able to fulfill the dreams of their youth.
At age fifty-plus they bring their professional and life experience to their new positions, according to reporter Chris Jansing. She concluded the report by noting that these volunteers, working with families to fight malaria and other diseases, are “helping children live to be adults – not bad for a second career.”
I briefly had the Peace Corps dream as a teenager – I thought it would fulfill a desire to see the world while helping others. But the idea was too big — it scared me — and I never seriously considered it. I admire those who did serve – then and now. I am inspired by women my age who are willing to trade a comfortable life for one of working to improve conditions in poor areas.
The Peace Corps is looking for more middle-aged volunteers. Was that your dream in the 1960’s? How about in 2012?