Time is running!!! – Volunteering in Trento Blog

02.03.2023 Mateusz Przybylski

Hello everyone, I'm Nina, 18 years old, from Germany. After finishing high school I wanted to do a gap year abroad. I decided to do an ESC voluntary service at the Comenius middle school. Now I'd like to tell you a bit about my experiences, since half of my time here is already over. I've been staying in Trento for 5 months and I still have another 5 months to go until the end of June.

First of all, the whole ESC program is just a dream. If you stumble upon it and are not sure if it is the right volunteering program for you, I'd say definitely yes! Everything is paid for you and the money you get is definitely enough to live here without paying for it (if you're from Germany and get Kindergeld, you can also travel without needing to worry much). You get the chance to travel a new country and learn a new language. But most of all, you will meet many new people and learn about their lives and cultures.
I live in a flat in Trento together with 5 other people. We’re a very international group and it is every time fascinating to get an inside into their stories, try their typical food or learn words in languages that are so different from my own. To be honest, it is sometimes hard to share a space with so many people: we only have a small kitchen (no living room) and I share my room with another girl (we get along super well), but there is not really a place where you can be alone for a longer period of time. Nevertheless, living with so friendly and open people makes me feel comfortable in this apartment and the city of Trento, which is so lovely with its historic centre and the mountains all around.
I like my project at the Comenius Institute. The students as well as the teachers were very welcoming when I arrived. I feel like they are glad to have me and like I can contribute to their lessons. I help mostly in German and English classes. I go around and help students, who need extra support, or I do presentations and other activities about German life and culture. On some days there is more to do than on others, but I always enjoy working with the children and getting to know them better time by time.

I’m shocked every time when I realize that half of my stay here is already over. Time is running! A small part of me is happy because it longs for the things that will happen after this year, especially seeing my loved-ones again, but mostly I don’t want this experience to end. I have never felt this free in my life before. Here in Trento I don’t have many responsibilities and I am free to spend my time how I want. Without the pressure of needing to study or the fatigue of working 40h a week, I am able to explore new places or stay the whole day at home. I believe, this will be the most carefree time of my life and I hope to enjoy the rest of it to the fullest!