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Give yourself to others and receive a bit of happiness Domenica, 10 Agosto 2014

My name is Zaneta, I come from small city in south-western Poland. Since I remember, I have been sensitive to social problems and willing to help other people. That's why, after my studies, I decided to take part in EVS. From the very beginning my goals were clear: the project should concern of a useful social work with children and human rights. Country didn’t play a huge role, but when I found the project in Bolzano, I knew, that this place will be good for me.

In my point of view,South Tyrol combine the tranquility of the Dolomites with italian “la dolce vita”. It is a region of contrasts, from Alpine peaks to the Mediterranean landscape, cosmopolitan, but also deeply rooted in tradition. You can clearly see the diversity of society and the cultural differences, but it makes the South Tyrol even more unique.

VKE is an association of volunteers, with 40 years of experience in a field of defend the rights of children to play. The range of activities is huge. During my service, I participated in many activities of the association: I worked in differents CasaGioco-mostly with children of immigrants, visited with PlaybusTeam small villages in the mountains-where we played with the local children. I had the opportunity to participate in the Children's City MiniBZ- which is a very special event, created for children and by children. I prepared also my own, smalls projects and initiatives. It's difficult to describe all of them in just a few words, but all these activities combined integration of children, without any preferences on cultural-language, nationalities or social backgrounds. It was amazing to see, that shared lives of young people - more with each other than next to each other - becomes more possible. Working with children, gave me something more, something, what I would like to keep in my heart: the secret, how to enjoy the little things, noticing the values ​​and uniqueness in them.

Life abroad, away from the family and usual friends, work in a new, multilingual and dynamic environment, meeting other EVS volunteers from all over Europe, allowed me to look at life from a different perspective and to open my mind to new realities. It gave me a opportunity to improve skills and knowledge in inter-curtural communication. By dinf of EVS I have gained quite a lot of professional experience. I met fantastic, full of energy and willingness to act, young people. I’m really glad that I could be one of the members of this lovely EVS-family. I have seen many tourist attraction and I discovered the beauty of small, unknown Italian towns. And finally, I have become to convinced, that pasta with parmesan tastes better than without!

My project is coming to the end... it is hard to believe how quickly passed these months. It still seems to me, that it all happened in just a few weeks. I would like to thank everyone, who did this year so special! (specially "Happy Shiny People" in Bolzano - without you guys would be not the same!)
Jan, Wenddi&Noemie, Roberto - great job and cooperation!
Thank you for all!

PS. One advice for you, if you read this short story and wondering if EVS is something for you ... Do not be afraid and just do it! It's a wonderful, unforgettable adventure!

Poland EVS Bolzano VKE

One year in Bolzano, in South-Tyrol Martedì, 28 Settembre 2010

When I was 15 years old, I had a dream - go to live to Italy - not forever but for certain time of my life. It took more than ten years, but finally my dream came true: I spent one wonderful year of my life doing EVS in Bolzano, in South-Tyrol. And even if it is not real Italy, but the meeting point of two cultures - Mediterranean and European – I am really proud of this cultural and work experience, happy to have so many new friends and very satisfied to the chance to be one of the members of VKE - the public oriented organization aimed to defend the rights of children to play.
VKE has two game centers (Spielhaus) with fixed structure for playing activities out of the usual school timetable and play bus (Ludobus) that organizes different activities on the playgrounds, school neighborhoods, private courts, streets and public places. During my Service I was part of the Ludobus team, so that I was all the time “on the wheels” and had a possibility to see the whole region (Suoth-Tyrol), work on the mountains and work with the children with fewer opportunities in periphery of Bolzano. And I like their goal - to give possibilities for children to play without any preferences between nationalities or social level.

Now after one year, at the end of the project I have to say, that I am really lucky person, who didn’t have to face any problem during my service: everything went just like I expected and even if at the beginning I was a bit confused of bilingual community (Italian and German), I feel myself now richer of this unique experience and two new languages (I can not speak German, but I understand more than I expected and at the moment I am really motivated to learn it),the lovely persons I met, my affection to the mountains and to the nature around Bolzano and of course Bolzano by itself…..this all will bring me back here 

To close my project I would like to thank everybody who made possible to make one year voluntary service in Italy: my sending, coordinating and hosting organizations, my family, all my friends who supported me in decision making period and all this lovely people I met during my voluntary service and with who I spent very special and beautiful moments in Italy.
At the moment still in Italy, enjoying the last summer sun shine and air of the mountains, I feel myself confident, happy and satisfied. The time flew so fast, that I have to ask to myself: do I have to go home already? Was it really one year? For me it seems like I arrived here yesterday….and after one week I’m already gone…

All of these youngsters, who are thinking about doing EVS I have just one suggestion: do it, it is the best experience and time of your life and you will remember it forever. If I could decide now one more time…I will do the same, everything again!

Arrivederci Italia….e a presto!

VKE Bolzano voluntary service EVS