St Lucians, Dr. Ingrid Cox-Pierre and Yasmin Walcott complete U.S. Embassy’s Sponsored International Visitor Leadership Program

St. Lucian professionals Dr. Ingrid Cox-Pierre and researcher Yasmin Walcott recently completed visits to the United States as fellows with the International Visitor Leadership Program of the U.S Department of State.

The IVLP is the U.S. Department of State’s premier professional exchange program. It aims to bring emerging global leaders together with U.S. experts to share information and best practices, and to learn from each other how professions across the world address similar issues.

Dr. Hardt and Cox-Pierre; Launched in 1940, the IVLP is a professional exchange program that seeks to build mutual understanding between the U.S. and other nations through carefully designed short-term visits to the U.S. for current and emerging foreign leaders. Over 4,000 IVLP fellows come to the United States from all over the world each year.

Dr. Ingrid Cox-Pierre is currently working as Strategy & Resource Officer for the Pan-Caribbean Partnership Against HIV/AIDS (PANCAP) at the CARICOM Secretariat in Guyana. She participated in the HIV/AIDS Education and Prevention Program in the United States, from November 15-December 03, 2010. Ms. Walcott, a project officer at the Caribbean Association for Feminist Research and Action took part in a program entitled “American Youth: Inspiring Leadership and Civic Participation.” This program, which ran from October 25-November 12, 2010, examined the concepts of democracy, government and citizenship, and their importance to U.S. civil society.

Dr. Cox-Pierre’s group travelled throughout the United States, from Pittsburgh, to Iowa and to Texas. The participants examined U.S. policies on the education, prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS at the national, state and local levels. The program highlighted the contribution of non-governmental organizations in educating the public about HIV/AIDS, supporting individuals and communities affected by the disease, and promoting international cooperation in the fight against the spread of HIV/AIDS.

IVLP Yasmine Walcott & Charge D'Affaires Hardt - Since its inception in 1940, thousands of distinguished individuals have participated in the International Visitor Leadership Program, including more than 290 current and former Chiefs of State and Heads of Government, thousands of cabinet-level ministers, and many other distinguished leaders from the public and private sectors.

Ms. Walcott travelled to Maine, Florida and New Mexico with the youth program which looked at youth involvement with Non-governmental organizations. In Florida, the group explored the cultural diversity of youth and how such diversity strengthens communities. During this time, the group met with the Perdido Bay Tribe of Creek Indians to learn about the group’s mission to educate others about Southeastern Creek history and culture through art and education. Participants also met with students of a new interfaith committee at the University of West Florida to discuss attitudes toward interfaith dialogue and the inclusion of young members of the congregations in interfaith work. In New Mexico, the group explored conflict resolution among Mexican-American youth.

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