Youth Mobility 2016
European Voluntary Service (EVS)
“Follow your dreams” in Finland by Kristina Abazaj
1 month EVS project in Kokkola, Finland (4.7.-4.8. 2016)
Hello! I am Kristina and this July I participated in an EVS programme in Finland. During the first week, we were living in Villa Elba in Kokkola. This week, was the one that volunteers met each other and got prepared. In the second week, we divided into four different projects.
My project was about preparing a horse club for the competitions in the last week of July. So me, Balint from Hungary and Kevin from Ireland moved to Nykarleby. We were working from Monday to Friday for about 6-7 hours per day. During these weeks, we were preparing the horse club, by painting, cutting some grass etc. As I was in a horse club, I couldn’t miss the opportunity to ride a horse. I was scary but funny in the same time! It was a unique experience!
Also, our weekends were free so, I travelled in some other places in Finland such as Vaasa, Turku, Helsinki and Porvoo. The last one was an amazing little town!
After the competitions and the end of the projects, we gathered all together in Kokkola for a couple of days. The only thing that in the end is making your experience in projects like this one is the people you meet. They are people totally strangers to you in first place and in the end you have brand new friends. And that’s you have to give it a try!!
Group EVS project “Green living in the rural area” in Kryoneri, Greece
During the periods June and September 2016, young people with fewer opportunities from Liechtenstein, Italy, Slovakia, United Kingdom, Germany, Czech rep., Spain and Romania spent one month in Kryoneri Korinthias, supporting different activities on sustainable development.
The village Kryoneri is situated in the centre of the Corinthian province, at the same distance between sea and mountains. It is built like an amphitheater, at 740 meters of altitude and has a panoramic view above the Corinthian Gulf. Mount Vesiza (1.200 m.) overlooks the village and constitutes the natural border with the plain of the Stymfalía lake. From this mountain, the river Elisson spreads and crosses Kryoneri and the evergreen plain, before flowing in the Corinthian Gulf, towards Kiato.
The volunteers worked on rural and sustainable development and environmental protection. The main tasks were related to promotion of land tourism’s sustainability; to the maintainance of environmental footpaths, reusing recycling material for wooden constructions; constructing a tree-house for seminar purposes, developing flora and fauna panels in environmental footpaths, setting up an educational organic botanic garden.
All activities has visible results and impact to the local community. The results will be used by schools for educational purposes and in this way, they will have longer term benefits.
It is an on-going pilot initiative for the rural development of the agricultural mountainous area on the Corinthian Upperland.
Further the project aims to contribute for a sustainable identity within the Greek land tourism. Agrotourism is targeting the upgrading of quality, derived from local farming products and services & helps the development of local economy. This attracts visitors from Greece and from international market, to visit the AGROroads network, fostering the Agrotourism development.
“Follow your dreams” in Finland by Anastasia Georgopoulou
1 month EVS project in Kokkola, Finland (4.7.-4.8. 2016)
During the period 4th of July – 4th of August I was a volunteer in Kokkola, Finland. I lived in Villa Elba with some other volunteers coming from different countries. At the first week we didn’t provide a volunteer work but we had great time knowing each other and knowing different cultures. It was the week that we had to separate in 4 projects. The volunteering project that I picked it was the “Kokkola Cup”. It is a football cup for children (ages: 4-14) from all over the country. I decided to be a volunteer in this project because I would like to provide help in a football tournament as great as this. It was a pleasure for me to take part (in a different way) in this amazing tournament because I had the opportunity to provide help and corporate with some great people that they were trying to run the tournament and helping us, as good as possible.
I met so many people and I made new friendships! Before “Kokkola Cup ” started, me and 5 more volunteers that we became friends we were cleaning(cutting the grass) and preparing the football fields and the canteens (and shops) of the “Kokkola Cup”. During the “Kokkola Cup” we were responsible for every canteen and football field. We had to supply every canteen if something was missing or we had to take care of the shops (of Kokkola Cup). After the final of the Kokkola Cup we had to return everything in it’s place like before. In general we worked a lot of hours but we had great
time in our job as well. After these 2-3 weeks that we worked for the Kokkola Cup, we had “vacation time” so me and some other friends from other countries, we decided to visit some other interesting places in Finland. Except Kokkola, we visited Pietarsaari, Pori, Turku, Vaasa and Helsinki (the capital). We had really good time all together, we built strong relationships, we had new experiences, we provided volunteering work, we met new wonderful places and we have some memories that we will always have in our minds!
EVS in Hammelburg, Germany
Coordinated by Jugendbildungsstätte Unterfranken (Würzburg, Germany)
My name is Andromachi Poulou, I’m from Greece and this year I decided to begin with my EVS (European Voluntary Service) and to spend 10 months in Germany, in a village called Hammelburg.
Since October 2016, I’m working in a school with the name “Kinderkiste”, which fills the “daytime” of the children, helping them do their homework, giving them the opportunity to do more activities like drawing, playing, reading and feel free to do whatever they like.
The environment is very cozy and the people very kind, showing to you that they accept and like you. I’m staying in a flat with two other volunteers (Spanish and Italian) and we three feel really glad that we met each other and have such a good relationship in an area that is totally foreign to us.
Also, once a week I have my German course which helps me to improve and upgrade my language skills.
Till now everything is going well and I’m sure that every youngster should feel more confident to start a project like this, which gives you the chance to see something different, to live in another country and to collect experiences by meeting new people, cultures and another way of spending one year not in your home.