From Marseille FRANCE-
I have always been interested in traveling, getting to know the culture and civilization of other countries and if I could combine that with gaining experience in my field of study, the better!
Having just finished my studies and in search of experience, I happened to discover the program of the European Voluntary Service (European Voluntary Service). After a brief search of the wide range of possibilities offered by EVS (engaging with children, culture, sports, environment and much more), I found the one that suited me best. Nine months of volunteering at the NGO Eurocircle in Marseille and specifically at the Europe Direct Information Center.
Despite the initial difficulties (for the first time alone in another country for such a long time), I managed with the help of the other volunteers but also the assistance of Eurocircle and PRAXIS (the organization responsible for me in Greece) to adapt and start enjoying my stay there.
My main activities were on the one hand the contact with young people (between 17 and 30 years old) and helping to find which mobility program suits them best and on the other hand raising awareness on issues such as the concept of citizenship, human rights, the European Union, etc., through the organization of events (eg debate with MEP, fête de l'Europe) and participation in cultural events both in Marseille and in other cities.
It is difficult to list the benefits of this experience. On the one hand, integrating into a truly international environment, collaborating and exchanging views with people from all over Europe (from Norway to Malta and Cyprus), improving language skills and the ability to adapt to a work environment that there is probably no one else who speaks your native language. On the other hand on a more personal level the acquisition of greater confidence, self-esteem and perception that for all difficulties there is a solution, the discovery of new skills and of course the new friends with whom we have already promised to visit each other to meet from near his place.
Anastasia, former volunteer in Marseille