At the start of the new week our fabulous crew was divided into two separate groups: Juan and Cecilia, our Mediterranean fellows, went to Bucharest for their On-Arrival Training whereas Jonathan, Maeliss, Barbara and Angelika stayed in Baia Mare and continued their regular activities.
The On-Arrival Training in Bucharest was a great experience! Apart from the day we spent travelling by train towards the capital, it was a unique opportunity to grow personally and professionally. It’s not easy to meet more than 60 volunteers in just five days! We did get a lot of contacts that might help us in a future if we want to spread out our ideas, for example by linking the goals of different projects and work together to the accomplishment of these goals. It would be interesting to work together with EVS volunteers that live in other regions of this large country!
Our daily tasks in Bucharest where focussed on two fields. Firstly, daily activities used to take place from the morning and lasted till dinner time. The aim of these activities was to reach new teambuilding skills and improve the competences we have already been learning in our own projects. The second, and perhaps the most interesting part for some of us, took place during the night. During night-time we went out to the various bars, either located near the hotel or in the city centre. It was very so useful to meet each other here, and speak as volunteer-to-volunteer 😊.
Meanwhile in Baia Mare, four of us faced a busy week. The absence of two member of the team made our tasks more difficult to accomplish. Our Monday started with planning various activities and a visit to the School 21 in Baia Mare. Here, we educated the pupils about teambuilding by use of various activities and games. This day posed no problem for us. The following day was about to be a bit more tough. It started as usual in the office, and halfway they day we did again head towards School 21. Directly after the ending of our activity in this school, we went to another school in the outer end of Baia Mare. Here, we did help in a consultation- meeting wherein local youth was offered the opportunity to note how they would like their city to be. How do we make Baia Mare, Youth Capital of Romania, more attractive for youngsters?
Just like that, the day in the middle of the week had arrived. Again, we were supposed to go to our favourite Hungarian class. Interculturality was the main theme of this week as we tried to represent our country to the pupils of various schools. Apart from the pupils of the Hungarian School, also young people from Copelnic and Cavnic got a taste of countries that are very different from their own. We showed the youngsters a short video about each of the countries that were represented by a volunteer. This week, this honour befell to the Netherlands, France, Portugal and Austria. In smaller groups we tried to bring our culture closer, by appointing a group of children to one country. We encouraged the children to do a creative activity with their respective country. The group of the Netherlands wrote a little poem, Team France made a tiny play, the Portugal group created a song and Austrians performed a traditional dance.
We have not to forget the time spent in the Children’s House. In one House we dedicated the evening to our home countries. All together we made Austrian Apfelstudel and Portuguese sweet rice. The other House did choose a more active program. Here was room for sports and games. It can be assured that the time passed very quickly in either house!
Being almost done, the hardest day of the week did still lay ahead of us. Our Friday started pretty early. Like last week, we had to rise early to catch our bus to Somcuta. Here, we had four hours of activities about different subjects. We brought the local youth closer to the topics Personal Development, Teambuilding and Volunteering. Despite our tiredness we persisted and delivered excellent classes for very eager students, and even though we were glad, we were aware that our day was still not done. After our return for Somcuta, we had to go directly to Cavnic, a rough 50 minutes from Baia Mare. The travel was long and exhausting, we spend less than one hour in Cavnic before we had to leave the school again; the last bus of the day was about to leave. At our return in Baia Mare, we had spent much more time travelling than actual activities. This left us particularly tired.
Despite our tough times, the evening provided us some relieve in the form of a small party, organized for various volunteers in Baia Mare. Here, we met with the young volunteers from the local YMCA. We were also very happy to meet our other friends. EVS-volunteers from the other organizations that are housed in Baia Mare were also invited and allowed us to have a pleasant evening.
All in all, we had a busy week in a team of four. We did nevertheless have fun and we gained a lot of experience. This week was not bad at all. But it can always be better. We were constantly looking forward to be united as a team of six again.
How to survive a week without each other?
- Use every free minute to send WhatsApp messages
- Go watch a movie in the local cinema
- Drink enough to forget that others are not there