sexta-feira, abril 10, 2015

EVS Volunteers - Words of Experience: ANNA

À semelhança do que aconteceu no ano passado, quisemos conhecer a fundo os nossos voluntários SVE (Serviço Voluntário Europeu). 
A Clara é uma das nossas fantásticas voluntárias ao abrigo do Programa Erasmus + da Comissão Europeia, e que te dará a conhecer nos próximos tempos os colegas que partilham com ela esta aventura. Hoje é a vez da Anna, a última a juntar-se ao grupo, mas que já se sente totalmente em casa!

Clara: So to start with, why don’t you introduce us a little bit to Anna?
Anna: Well, my name is Anna Kosareva, I am 26 and I’m from Ukraine. I am doing EVS here in Cascais for 9 months.

And could you tell us a bit about your project and your EVS activities?
Rota Jovem works with youth and one of my major activities here is to promote what Rota Jovem does, all of its events and workshops and also creating interesting activities which enable young people to develop themselves.

Obviously, you’ve had previous work experience. What field(s) did you work in and what do you see yourself doing in the future, professionally speaking?
I finished university with a Bachelor’s (Degree) in Foreign Languages and Literature. I’ve had several jobs and they were all absolutely different. Mostly I’ve worked with people and for people, for example I was a tour guide in Crimea, organizing tours, taking groups around the peninsula and telling them about the place, which was quite an interesting experience. For the future, I’d like a job which connects intellectual work with creative aspects, maybe just a little bit of physical activities as well. I’d like to be able to apply my knowledge to find something new, to learn something and create things that can be useful to others.

Your project requires you to interact with other volunteers quite a lot, both at home and as part of your work. Would you say you work better in a group or individually?
Well, as with anything else, I’d like to have a bit of both, because they form a kind of harmony. I like teamwork, I like talking to people and communicating but I also like to have my personal space, so mixing these two things together would be perfect. And it is perfect now, actually.

Before coming to your EVS, I imagine you told the people in your life about it. What was the general reaction? Did they know about this program?
The thing is that the people I am close to right now are older than me, so they had never heard about EVS. Actually, they have never been abroad on such a program, so everybody was very interested in knowing more and at the same time scared, because it’s not a very common thing there. I think people my age and younger are quite aware about EVS and they are more into this type of intercultural communication. Anyway, everybody was happy for me and now they ask me all the time "What’s going on there? What’s going on there?".

And when you say scared, what do you mean exactly? What kind of fears did you most encounter?
Oh, things like "Are you going there to be a slave? Are you sure they’re not gonna sell you into sexual slavery? Basically the slave stuff."

So tomorrow is your one week anniversary here in Portugal! Can you tell me one thing that struck you most about Lisbon so far?
One thing that hit me is just how beautiful it is, because it’s absolutely beautiful. Everything from the streets paved with stones to the nature and mountains, ocean and rivers and then the architecture…everything is absolutely stunning. Anywhere you look it’s like a painting. It’s a pity our eyes can’t take photos.

But what is one thing from Ukraine that you wish Portugal had?
Well, I miss my boyfriend a lot, so he is the main thing from Ukraine I wish Portugal had. But on a serious note, I actually don’t miss anything from home yet. I can find Ukrainian stuff here, there’s some Russian stores, Portuguese food is also quite tasty and I’m exploring it so…yeah, just my boyfriend.

Also on the topic of Ukraine, what’s one thing about your country you’d like more people to know?
To be honest, I haven’t talked a lot about Ukraine with people here. People asked me some things, but nothing shocking yet, so I can’t say right now. Of course, I’d like the Portuguese people to know that Ukrainians are very kind, very hospitable and welcoming to foreigners. Also, Ukraine is very big and has many region: the South speaks Russian, the East is also Russian-speaking, but the rest of the country – North, Western and central Ukraine – speaks Ukrainian, which is a very beautiful language. People there like to mention a competition from the 90s meant to establish which was the most beautiful of languages, in which Ukraine came out 3rd (after French and another language). I don’t know if it’s true, but I can confirm that Ukrainian is indeed beautiful. So yeah, I’d like people to know that Ukraine exists and it has a wonderful language and a rich culture.

What about music? Can you recommend some cool artists for us people who’ve never been exposed to Ukrainian music?
Yes, I would recommend DakhaBrakha. It is folk music, but a very modern kind of folk. And then of course, we have Okean Elzy, who are very popular now in Ukraine. They’re like huge national icons at the moment. They were rock stars and now they got into singing national pride stuff, so they are quite big there.

Now for the ending, I would like you to say something to the Anna 9 months from now, to Anna at the end of her EVS.
Hey Anna, how are you? I hope you’ve been using a lot of sun protection cream and that your skin doesn’t hurt. And don’t worry; you can always come back. 

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