Ambassador Manasvi Welcomes Peace Corps Volunteer Group 12

Ambassador Manasvi Srisodapol warmly welcomed members of Peace Corps Volunteer Group 12, together with their spouses on 4 April 2022 at the Embassy. They came from different states across the U.S. including California, Washington, Texas, New York, and Massachusetts for their long-weekend reunion in Washington, D.C. The group visited the Embassy several times in the past with intention to convey their meaningful connections to Thailand. They are among 56 Peace Corps Volunteers that trained and worked in Thailand during 1965 – 1967.

Ambassador Manasvi expressed his gratitude for the group’s wonderful work in Thailand and was impressed with their strong ties with Thailand. He told the group about the progress of how Thailand has been handling COVID-19 pandemic. Recently, Thailand received 2.5 million doses of vaccines as donations from the U.S. and very grateful for the generosity extended. Currently, Thailand is in the process of developing its own mRNA ChulaCov19 vaccine, while producing AstraZeneca’s vaccines in the country. Thailand will soon be in the position to donate COVID-19 vaccines to neighboring countries where needed.

 

Another topic of discussion was the Thai government’s initiatives toward the economy and the environment. Thailand is currently promoting a Bio-Circular-Green (BCG) Economy and Renewable Energy Transition to increase the country’s energy efficiency. In this regard, Thailand is proceeding to attract tourists back into the country to its bolster economic growth.

Mr. Bill Shaw, who married and lived in Thailand for 25 years, spoke on behalf of Group 12 in Thai reaffirming how friendly and hospitable Thai people are, even through the masks these days. He said that Group 12 was in Thailand 57 years ago to volunteered with local communities in areas such as community development, agriculture, veterinary practices, and home economics. It was such a valuable experience that has stamped substantial impact on all the volunteers’ lives and perspectives. Mr. John Williams, former Peace Corps Country Director in Thailand, added that the volunteering program has yielded two-way benefits for both Thailand and the U.S., especially how it has signified valuable people-to-people relations like no other.

The Peace Corps Volunteers and spouses who visited the Embassy include Jim and Diana Zurer, David and Julie Borsani, Bill and Wannee Shaw, Jim Mohan, John Williams, Jim and Kathie Winterstein, Ron Muller, Loren and Zara Wille, Frank Hicks, Fred and Judy Deyo, and Kathleen (Kay) Orsini. Authentic Thai chicken-basil spring rolls and shrimp cakes were served as snacks by the chef of the Ambassador’s Residence.