- Project name: I care! I volunteer!
- Duration: 2017 February- 2018 January
- Place of stay: Vilnius
- Sending organization: FVE – Fiatalok a Vidékért Egyesület
- Coordinating organization: SALTES
- Hosting organizations: DofELietuva, SocialinisSufleris
DofE – Main part of my work was hike assessing. DofE is about youth development through different levels. After completing their level, participants had to go on a hike where they would be able to put into practice all the skills thez have acquired through their required activities. This hike was fully self-sustained, everything was planned by the group itself (length, route, sleeping place, food, navigation, aim, checkpoints and timing, all according to DofE rules). I had to help my tutor in evaluating these plans, then on occasion, to assess these hikes. A hike lasted between 2 to 4 days, I usually went after the group on foot, slept in a tent, packed everything as they have. This way I was able to see many beautiful places in Lithuania, visited many regional parks and national parks while also trying to enjoy the local notable places and buildings as much as my time allowed me to do so.
Also there was a really nice tradition in the office; every Wednesday, during lunch break, some co-workers organized a basketball game for all who was interested. Not for professionals, purely for fun.
Socialinis Sufleris – Sufleris is about community building and strengthening local community cohesion through workshops. The tasks here were really diverse, ranging from the usual office work (filling out forms, delivering documents, editing pictures from workshops, creating posts) to actual fieldwork (workshops for youth, team building exercises on slackline). This also required a lot of flexibility as many workshops were outside Vilnius and during the weekends, sometimes lasting for several days. But it was also fun because I was able to see different parts of Lithuania from time to time instead of sitting in front of my computer.
By the end of the year I can tell about myself that I’ve been to more places in Lithuania than the average Lithuanian and seen a lot more than the average volunteer. I’ve also met many nice people during this time, spent many hours in good company and been involved in many experiences that few can say for themselves.
As I was living in the capital of Vilnius, there were always many other volunteers around (usually about 60 of us) and many opportunities to meet with them, too. On many occasions one of the coordinating organizations created some events for us, but there were many gatherings happening every week as well. Within SALTES we also had our little community as there were some events just for us and for the first half of the year, most of us lived in the same dormitory. So every day we bumped into each other but had some meetings occasionally where we sat together for a while. And even within this closer group there were a couple of friends with whom I met more frequently and could count on anytime. We had our own little traditions and gatherings, discovered the city together and discussed our problems as well if there was any. So I can say that Vilnius has a really great volunteering community where one can have fun and also share her/his problem and find some sympathetic ears and support.
Aradi Adrián Litvániában EVS önkéntes az Erasmus+ program támogatásával.