Hello my lucky readers,
Once again I’m here, the non-stop talking Greek one, to write to you about my ESC experience that is now over (sounds of crying in the distance).
Last year, on 28th of September I arrived in Italy and in particular in Faenza. I was young, I was free, I was so happy to be here! My ESC adventure was about to start! But let’s talk a bit about my background and the reasons that I took this amazing ESC opportunity.
A year ago I was about to finish my University and take my degree in Italian Language and Literature. Meanwhile, I was already working for two years in a restaurant in Athens and I was really happy there. Last year (March 2019), I decided to visit my best friend in Spain, where she did her Erasmus+ Placement and it was there where I started thinking about taking an European opportunity as well. I mean, all these years I was studying and working at the same time and never though about joining an Erasmus+ project or something similar. I blame the lack of information regarding these projects in Greece. When I returned back to Athens I started thinking about it so hard that I couldn’t resist. I searched a lot and I found different opportunities, like the Erasmus+ placement and the various Youth Exchanges, I wasn’t sure what to choose. All of them have a finish day, but how much time I wanted to spent in this experience?
Around summer I saw a Call for Greek Volunteers in Faenza posted on a Facebook page. It was for a long-term ESC, for a whole year, I was ready for it? I started thinking about it non-stop, I was about to graduate, I had a job and I loved it there, but I never took an opportunity like this in my life. I imagined my life for the next year in Athens, writing the last university exams, working as usual and trying nothing different. This stability might work for some people, so they don’t have to do big steps away for their comfort zone, but I always say that I’m brave and I’m always trying new things.
It got me almost two weeks thinking about this opportunity in Faenza, looking at the call daily, but I finally sent my application. I got accepted after a month and around September I left my life in Greece to come in Italy and try new things. It was a year that I will never forget! Here I started working with children, that I already had some experience, and with asylum seekers and I managed the social media of the organization. The thing that I enjoyed the most was the writing of European Projects. I always knew that writing was my passion, for several year I worked as a columnist and an editor, but I never tried to write a EU proposal. This year I had this chance and I discovered a new talent of mine. I loved the fact that I can put down my ideas and create a project for other young Europeans to join. All these social and environmental opinions that I had can come closer now to reality and I can talk with other people in my age about them, share our opinions and raise awareness.
All these of course could never happen If I hadn’t the support of my coordination and my hosting association. I was difficult you know, I was so active, always full of ideas and I’m sure they were a bit tired of me. But they were always there to support me, to give me all the needed material and guidelines to realize my ideas. This is the part of ESC that I enjoyed the most. The non-formal type of education, where you are free to try new things and learn through their realization, where you don’t have to work only in one thing, but you can try a lot of them and see what suits you. This is the ESC for me; an opportunity for young people, ready to do their first professional steps and they need to know a bit better themselves and their abilities. The ESC did this for me and I will always be grateful. Of course there are a lot of other things that offers, like the opportunity to live in another country, to get in touch with people from all over Europe and to learn new cultures.
Now it’s over… or not?
A few days ago my ESC finished, but is it finished for real? I don’t like endings anyway, even though they might be happy. So for me it’s not finished, it will always be with me, it will always help me to deal with situations, with new things that I want to try in my life and new opportunities that will appear in my path. It is a life learn opportunity and I will keep it that way.