segunda-feira, março 18, 2019


Montassar Tizaoui from Tunisia

I am Montassar Tizaoui from Tunisia. I am living a great volunteering experience in Lisbon. I’m hosted by Rota Jovem and I’m currently working with Associação de Actividades Sociais do Bairro 2 de Maio.
Volunteering in a foreign country and you know what is more? Is that I work with children. These three fundamental factors made of my experience such an amazing one. 

The first important factor is volunteering. One of my principles in life is to devote energy, skills and competences to help others. I strongly believe on sharing and this is what I am doing here. Everything is shared. I share the same house with colleagues. I share my energy and skills with children.
The second factor is that I spend my days with children. I take care of these children as if they were my own. I love them and they love me. I am not parent yet I feel as if I am a ‘daddy’ to so many little ones.

Each day brings new excitements. I start my day with innocent faces, we spend quality time together, and I read stories to them and see different reactions on their small faces. Although I do not speak the same language, I feel that we are all connected and we communicate well. 

I give them advices and I try to facilitate the integration of all children without exception. I know it is huge responsibility to work with children, that is why I pay attention to every single world and action. I feel the importance of contributing to the character’s building of these miniature humans. Let me give you a glance about my daily routine with my angles. Everyday morning we start by drawing or gymnastics, and then it is lunchtime. This is a challenging part of the day. I help them to eat all their food without forcing them. After eating, it is time for them to take a nap. After having a rest they eat their snacks and it is time to dance and play different games.  With their sweet company, time flies so fast. 

The third factor is that I am discovering a new country with a new culture. Lisbon is such an amazing city as it is one of the world's oldest cities. Every day I enjoy the beauty and richness of this place.
Volunteering in a European country and within the field of children care is a very rich experience. I think that I am lucky to have such an opportunity to build up myself and to promote human values. I am learning lessons every single moment and I will go back to my country with many beautiful memories.
Community Goes Europe – Julia

I am from Germany and participating in my EVS project in Cascais, Portugal. I have just graduated from high school last summer and wanted to gain some experience abroad before going to university. My project is called “Community Goes Europe” and lasts 10 months. My sending organization is “Culture Goes Europe” from Erfurt and my hosting organization is “Associação Juvenil Rota Jovem” in Cascais.
Before coming to Portugal, I have never done voluntary work and did not have a clear picture in my head on what to expect but I was and I still am positively surprised by the variety of tasks my volunteering experience offers to me. I would therefore like to give you an insight in my possible tasks. Rota Jovem, as a youth organization, is involved in the planning and implementation of events, workshops, youth exchanges, training courses, seminars etc. My contribution here is supporting my colleagues, which means for example doing research, helping with administrative tasks, coming up with new ideas or suggestions and familiarizing myself with the topics and different methods used in the events.  As a result, I have already learned a lot about methods like peer-to-peer education and non-formal education which I keep in mind when suggesting new workshops.
Apart from that, I also participate in the so called “Move-te” sessions, where we directly address the topic of volunteering opportunities with Erasmus+ to young people. During these sessions, the youngsters can ask questions to me and the other volunteers to get a general idea of how life as a volunteer abroad is like and how application processes work for example. In my opinion these sessions are very important because they provide information and insight on a different level than dry facts on the internet could.
Furthermore, I also do Tandem, which is a method of language learning that is based on the exchange of languages between two people. In practice it means that I teach German or English to someone and this person teaches Portuguese to me in return. I have already found different Tandem partners and I am enjoying these lessons a lot, because I believe that this method is a very effective way of learning languages because you learn from native speakers.
All in all, I can say that I am enjoying my volunteering experience in Portugal a lot. I consistently learn on different levels which enables me to create consciousness for multiple aspects in different areas which will surely be helpful for my future.