Santa Barbara Peace Corps Association
Serving the Community and Peace Corps Volunteers around the world
Upcoming Events
Summer BBQ - August 21

(Only $5 each & only a few are left!)
Recent Events
Happy Hour - June 3
Spring Fling BBQ - March 20
Coffee - January 23
Food Drive for Food Bank of SB County
- Months of December & January
Photo Exhibit "Sojourn: Cameroon"
- Months of December & January
Slide Show: Cuba - December 1
Wine Tasting - November 21
Sandcastle Festival - September 19
Sandcastle Workshop - September 12
Peace Corps Photos Exhibit
- Month of September

BBQ - August 22
Upcoming Events



Summer BBQ & S'mores-fest
Saturday, August 21, 2010, 4-8pm @ Robin's back yard, 9 Solana Court, near Hendry's Beach, Santa Barbara

We had such a good time last year in Robin’s backyard telling stories, BBQing and making s'mores, we decided to do it again. Bring a chair to sit on, something to sip, something to grill, and a side dish to share. SBPCA will provide place settings and good cheer. Robin will provide s'mores fixin's! RSVP to Beth Cleary via email or call her at (805) 284-3262.

Click here to check out photos from last year's Summer BBQ!




"International Service: Bringing The World Back Home"
Sunday, September 26, 3:00pm @ Lobero Theatre, 33 East Canon Perdido, Santa Barbara

This event is FREE. Presented in celebration of the Peace Corps' 50th Anniversary by the Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB, this panel discussion will examine the impact of the Peace Corps on the lives of distinguished returned volunteers and will include the following individuals:

Sarah Chayes, former international correspondent for NPR, author of The Punishment of Virtue: Inside Afghanistan After the Taliban, and founder of the Arghand Cooperative in Kandahar (Morocco 84--86); Gordon L. Radley former president, Lucasfilms Ltd. (Malawi, 68-70, Western Samoa, 79); Thomas Tighe, President and CEO, Direct Relief International who served as Associate General Counsel of the Peace Corps and Chief of Staff and Chief Operating Officer of the Peace Corps (Thailand, 86-88).

Congresswoman Lois Capps (CA-23) & SBPCA's President, Victoria Juarez, will be among those making opening remarks.

Recent Events



Peace Corps on Parade!
(For 4th of July, that is!)
Sunday, July 4, 2009 @ State Street, Santa Barbara

What a great sight it was to see a group of RPCVs march in the Santa Barbara 4th of July Parade, holding the Peace Corps banner, American flag, and flags from various Peace Corps countries of service! It was a nice reminder to parade-goers that the Peace Corps is alive and well and that there are different ways to serve your country.

(Huge thanks go to Robin Smith for her incredible planning & organizational skills!)

Click here to see photos from last year's parade group!



Happy Hour!
Thursday, June 3, 2010 @ Derf's Cafe, 2000 De la Vina Street (at Mission Street), Santa Barbara

Yes, that’s right, Derf’s has actually perfected the blend of neighborhood dive bar with a somewhat healthy menu including such items as a health nut salad and a new chicken wrap. (OK, so the chicken wrap may not be so healthy, but it IS delicious!) It was great to get to hang out with those of you who came out to get happy with us on the patio. Shockingly, we didn't witness a single wrong-way driver on De la Vina!



Noms Event & RPCV Panel
Thursday, April 8, 2010, 6-8pm @ Direct Relief International, 27 S. La Patera Lane, Goleta

As we do every year, we gathered SBPCA Board members, reps from the LA Peace Corps office, local RPCVs, local Noms, and others interested in joining the Peace Corps to give a synopsis of what SBPCA does, hear what's new with Peace Corps, find out who from the SB area has been recently nominated to service, listen to a great panel of local RPCVs talk about their Peace Corps experiences, eat, and socialize. Thanks to our panelists and everyone who came out for this event and made it so great!


Spring Fling BBQ!
Saturday, March 20, 2010 @ Nancy's House

Thanks to those who came to catch up, BBQ, and generally socialize! And thanks to Nancy for hosting!



Annual Meeting & Potluck
Saturday, February 20, 2010, 11am-1pm @ 721 Laguna Street (at corner of De la Guerra), Santa Barbara

As we do every year, we got together to recap the past year's accomplishments, hear what grants we've made to PCVs in the field, hear what's new with SPBCA, elect our board of directors, and of course... eat and socialize! Fait accompli!


Saturday, January 23, 2010, 10am @ Muddy Waters, 508 East Haley Street, Santa Barbara

This place has to be the hippest coffee joint south of Portland. Art on the walls, live music at night, crazy paint schemes, everything you expect from the avant garde java crowd. We had a great time with everyone who came out start their day right by relaxing, catching up, making new friends, and caffeinating with us!





Holiday (Virtual) Food Drive
The months of December & January
--> online: Click here

This year, especially in light of the economy, the SBPCA Board decided to start an annual tradition of encouraging SBPCAers to participate in a local charity drive. While our Mini Grants program helps communities all over the world, we wanted to do something meaningful here at home, too. This year we chose to hold a food drive to benefit the Food Bank of Santa Barbara County.

With just a few clicks of their mouses (mice?), people contributed to hunger relief in SB County by selecting to fund specific items on the page's list or by inputing a specific dollar amount. For every $1 donated, Food Bank was able to distribute $7 worth of food!

We'll report back soon on how much we were able to raise for this great purpose!

Shelter from the Sun by Naomi Kovacs

"Sojourn: Cameroon"
Months of December & January @ Conditioning Specialists, 1329 State St., Santa Barbara

During the months of December & January, this gym featured an exhibit of photographs taken by SBPCA board member Naomi Kovacs while she was in the Peace Corps in Cameroon, Africa.




Holiday Potluck Party
Fri, December 11, 5-8pm @ Victoria & Matt’s, 631 Castillo St, Santa Barbara

Wow! We had a packed house! Literally! About 40 SBPCAers and friends came out to unwind from the work week and kick-off their holiday celebrations at what was a really fun event. As always, the food was awesome, too! (You can always count on RPCVs for a good potluck!)

We decided to do a "Who Am I?" ice breaker game at this event, which was a huge success. Thanks to all of you who submitted "random tidbits" of info about yourselves for the game. Who knew that Gail swam with hippos in the Gambie River (not understanding that the locals weren't waving hello, but frantically trying to get her out of the water)? Or that Jane tutored the fourth wife of the Emir of Qatar (and was never paid by her!)? Or that Millie stole apples from Air Force One while in Peace Corps? Well, we do now! And we know a lot more, too!

Many thanks to Victoria & Matt for being the hosts with the most, and to everyone who came out and made it such a great party. Thanks also to those who brought donations for the SBPCA Holiday Food Drive for the Food Bank of Santa Barbara County!


Slide Show: Cuba

Tues, December 1, 7pm @ Travel Store (formerly Pacific Traveler's Supply), 12 W. Anapamu St., Santa Barbara

Attendees of this cool slide show were treated to photos taken by our own Mike Marzolla during his recent trip to Cuba.


Wine Tasting
(Because who couldn't use a little more fruit in their diet?)
Sat, November 21, 2-4pm, Wine Tasting @ Whitcraft Winery, 36 A S. Calle Cesar Chavez, Santa Barbara

Wow! What a crowd! This small winery barely had enough space to accommodate the unexpected number of SBPCAers and friends who came out for this deliciously fun event.

For more info on this winery, visit:


  Pre-Halloween Happy Hour
Thurs, October 29, 5-7pm @ Moby Dick’s on Stearns Wharf

TGIF came a day early for our crowd! It was great to see so many familiar and new faces at this event. We even got to see our local area PC recruiter, Jeanette Earley, who visited with us for a bit before she had to head back down to LA. Thanks to all who showed up, and special thanks go to our very patient and accommodating server at Moby Dick's; with a crowd of over 20 people coming and going at different times, moving around the table from chair to chair in order to catch up with different people, ordering food and drinks at different times -- all on individual tabs, well, he deserves a medal!



Santa Barbara Sandcastle Festival
Saturday, September 19, 2009, 11am-6pm @ East Beach, Santa Barbara

Who loves sandcastles and team activities? WE do! That's why "Team Peace Corps" joined in the fun at this year's 7th Annual Santa Barbara Sandcastle Festival's contest. Joining "Team Peace Corps" were an RPCV and a PC nominee from Santa Barbara, an RPCV from Los Angeles and her fiance (who become her fiance within hours of the festival! -- We'd like to think being on "Team Peace Corps" had something to do with that!), an RPCV from San Diego and her friend, and 2 friends of local RPCVs. They built a great half-globe and made the continents of the world out of seaweed. Way to represent!

A photo of their creation will be posted soon! (The photo to the left was taken at one of the previous festivals, built by a non-Peace Corps team. Nice creation!)

For more info on the festival, visit:



Sandcastle Building Workshop
Saturday, September 12, 2009, 11am-1pm @ East Beach, Santa Barbara

How cool is this?! The Sandcastle Festival folks taught a FREE workshop open to the community to teach people great tips and techniques for building sandcastles and sand sculptures! Three members of "Team Peace Corps" attended, gleening skills and ideas to help them prepare for the following week's big contest at the 7th Annual Sandcastle Festival.


Peace Corps Photos Exhibit
Month of September, 2009 @ The French Press / Arcobaleno Trade, 1101 State Street, Santa Barbara

If you went to the French Press / Arcobaleno Trade during the month of September, you saw the SBPCA photo exhibit of Peace Corps photos on display...and we hope that while you were there, you enjoyed a chai or "magic pot" and browsed through the awesome fair trade items they have for sale.

Many thanks to all who went to see our exhibit. And we're pleased to report that we raised about $250 from Peace Corps photo sales and donations, which will benefit the SBPCA mini grants program!

See photos from the exhibit opening reception here!



SBPCA Photo Exhibit Reception @ 1st Thursday
Thursday, September 3, 2009, 5-8pm @ the French Press / Arcobaleno Trade, 1101 State Street, Santa Barbara

The place was packed for most of the evening! Thanks to all the people who came to see the opening night of our display of selected photos from local RPCVs taken in their countries of service. Thanks, too, our RPCV photographers who made this event possible, and to Lou Spaventa (RPCV Korea) for his great guitar melodies.

Photos on display are from Tunisia, Russian Far East, Republic of Georgia, Cameroon, Guatemala, Morocco and Central African Republic.

See photos here!


BBQ Saturday, August 22, 2009, 4-8pm in Robin's back yard, near Hendry's Beach, Santa Barbara

It isn't summer without BBQing! So a bunch of SBPCAers and friends got together to enjoy a long summer day, some grillin' goodness, the art of socializing, and we can't forget Beth's incredible s'mores! (How fortuitious that Robin just happened to have a bag of s'mores fixin's on hand!) It was a great day that ended as a great evening around the fire pit. Thanks, Robin, for hosting!

See photos here!


2010 International Calendars
--> Now only $5 each!

It may be summer already, but we still have a few of the 2010 calendars left! Without one, how will you know when to celebrate the Belize's Garifuna Day or Nepal's Rakshabandhana? Discover a new holiday practically every day of the year. Amaze your friends with your vast knowledge of international holidays and events.

Get one of these calendars and double the bang for your buck since you get a great decorative and informative calendar AND the proceeds help fund Peace Corps Volunteer projects through SBPCA's Mini Grants program!

Special Pricing! Calendars are now steeply discounted since we are already well into the year. Get one or more of the few calendars we have left for only $5 each! (That's 66% off!) Email Beth to place an order.


SBPCA T-Shirts

SBPCA has awesome t-shirts for sale! They've been so popular that sizes and colors are limited at this point, so get yours now! Only $15 each. Proceeds benefit the SBPCA Mini-Grant Program. And they make great gifts, too!

To purchase a t-shirt, please email Victoria.



SBPCA on Facebook

On Facebook?
Join the SBPCA Facebook Group!

For those facebookers in our group, we have created a facebook group! Come on, you know you want to be a part of it! Join us! Click here or if that doesn't work, do a search for the group. We're named: "Santa Barbara Peace Corps Association (SBPCA)"


On LinkedIn?
Join the SBPCA LinkedIn Group!

For those online networkers in our group, we have created the "Santa Barbara Peace Corps Association (SBPCA)" group on LinkedIn! Come on, you know you want to be a part of it! Join us! We're at


Jeanette in the Republic of Kiribati


Meet Jeanette Earley,
Regional Peace Corps Recruiter

Peace Corps Los Angeles Regional Office

Find out how you can get one of the toughest jobs you'll ever love while making a difference in the world. Jeanette Earley (RPCV Republic of Kiribati 2005-2007), Regional Recruiter for the Peace Corps, holds office hours at the UCSB Career Services Center. To find out her hours and/or set up an appointment to meet with her, send her an email or give her a call at (310) 356-1112.

You can also get more info on applying to the Peace Corps if you click here.

Copyright © 2007 Santa Barbara Peace Corps Association. All rights reserved.
Website created by Karlos Benavides, Barbara Hodgdon, Robert Stevens & Naomi Kovacs.
Website managed by Naomi Kovacs.
Website consulting provided by

Santa Barbara Peace Corps Association
P.O. Box 91406
Santa Barbara, CA 93190