Everytime I am asked about my voluntary service my eyes look brighter. It is a pleasure for me to write about my volunteering time in Bulgaria.
As you read, I made an European Voluntary Service in Sofia, Bulgaria, in a project called Mountain assistants. It was a 4 months long project. A very short project, when I was actually looking for a long period stay, up to 12 months. So why did I chose it? When I read and understood the purpose of the project, I told to myself: THIS IS MY PROJECT
In few points, this was about the project:
- Improving and taking care of a marked route – or ecopath
- Collaborating with Bulgarian Red Cross
- Learning the Scouts and Rovers methodology
- Promoting eco-friendly ways to enjoy the benefits of nature and mountains
- Learning about security and disaster prevention in nature
- Developing skills to survive in natural environment
And about the frequently asked question: Why Bulgaria? I just told to myself: WHY NOT?
I’m not going to lie, I was actually attracted to the idea of spending 4 months in a country like Bulgaria, as I knew very few about it and I found it exotic for an spanish guy like me. But the decision was already taken after reading the program of the project. I am a mountain and outdoor sports lover.
And this is what it took me to an airplane destination to Sofia, the capital city of Bulgaria. So I was there alone, sitting and reading a piece of paper with the cyrilic alphabet written on it, what I thought it was the first step to learn Bulgarian language – in reality I had printed the Russian alphabet by mistake.
Few years after, I not only keep many memories as treasure but also I realize of my own growth and development with the time and perspective. It was not only exciting, interesting, funny, challenging. It was life-changeing. Short but intense.
Today, thinking about my voluntary service gives me the will and the strength to work for somehow improving people’s life, as I feel very grateful and want to give it back to society.