Maja Tomic EVS Experience in the Netherlands
In August 2014, I had the chance to spend an incredibly fulfilling and one of a kind EVS placment with Don Bosco in the Netherlands. During this month, I lived in an old villa alongside almost 30 other people from 13 different countries. The most unbelievable part might just be that we all got along and worked so well together. The first few days were an absolute culture shock. As a person from a small town with many closed-minded people, being able to walk around cities in the Netherlands and meet so many kind and liberal people was a very big change. It was this month that I decided what I’d like to study and what kind of work I want to do. The experience brought me closer to working with children; it was a test of patience, understanding, creativity, and, above all, teamwork. It made many volunteers, including myself, fall in love with youth work and volunteering.
We were there to help out during a children’s festival, which had over 200 attendees every day. I worked in a group with kids aged 9-10, which was one of the toughest crowds to pleased, seeing as they are both too young and too old for most games and activities we could come up with. Nevertheless, I was part of an amazing team, who were all a big help with our communication and initiative with the kids. There was dancing, singing, costumes, cooking, role playing games, and so on, which all gave me ideas and inspiration to continue my volunteer work with Svitac even when the EVS ended.
Even now, over a year later, I think of my time in Don Bosco and it makes me smile. We all made good friends, and even with them being all over the globe, it is always wonderful to hear from them, and be reminded of the everlasting connection made between us on this adventure.
Marija Tomic, EVS volunteer, Omladinska organizacija Svitac