My volunteering experience!! Blog dei volontari

18/06/2024 Maria Athanasia Katsiadrami

Ciao a tutti! My name is Marisia, I’m 25 years old and I’m from Greece.

About a year ago I decided to apply to the European Solidarity Corps program for a long-term volunteering project in Molfetta, a small city situated in the south of Italy, in the region of Apulia.

Luckily I got accepted! And just like that my 10 month experience started. I volunteered at the municipality of Molfetta, where I was responsible for organizing activities that would benefit the community. One of them was the creation of an info-point for young people 18-30 years old about the different Erasmus+ opportunities that exist out there (and trust me, there are a lot, so all you have to do is find the right one for you!).

Another one of my activities was helping kids aged 6-12 with their homework, mostly English but also elementary Italian. I went to this center for kids with less opportunities, where most of them were immigrants, and we had so much fun together (especially after homework), we played different games and told them about my experience and travelling, and I really think that I gave these kids something to anticipate until they grow up.

Of course I took part in other activities organized by the municipality and some local non-profit organizations, but volunteering is not all about work! The good thing about Molfetta is that I was not the only volunteer here, there were about 15 more that were sharing the same experience as me. I met a lot of people from different countries across Europe, we became friends, and spent a lot of time together having fun.

And speaking of having fun, I had the honor of creating my very own podcast series, called Fighting Stereotypes! During these 6 episodes, me and some of my friends tried to describe and stand up against social phenomena happening in our days, as well as personal experiences. I can tell you registering them was so much fun! 

I’m very grateful for being given this opportunity, because during these months I learnt a lot about myself, I developed skills that will prove to be useful in the future and became even more independent. Some of the people I met I will hold forever in my heart and will keep in touch with them (plus I now have free accommodation across Europe xd).

So if you’re thinking to take the next step and try this experience, I would say that it’s a must. This is only a small part of my life as a volunteer, because it’s really hard to describe 10 months full of adventure, discovering and joy in one page. Don’t be scared, because someone will always be by your side guiding you and helping you get through every step of the way. And while you may never feel rich in your pockets (unless you plan ahead), you will always be rich in your heart through your memories. Arrivederci!