My ESC Volunteering in Thessaloniki, Greece
My experience with volunteering in Thessaloniki, Greece
My name is Belma Nahic and in the last two and half months, I have been volunteering in Thessaloniki in Greece. NGO Svitac (Firefly Bosnia) gave me this wonderful opportunity. They were great help with everything from pre-departure training, organising activities and throughout my volunteering in Greece.
The partner organisation from Greece was Esai en Roi Cultural Organisation. I was volunteering in a final stage of a mobility project called YACeco (Young Active Citizens Supports Ecological Actions). Despite Covid-19 regulation and restrictions, we have been able to accomplish amazing things in the past 2 months.
Because I have an MSc degree in Ecology, I had the opportunity to design and teach environmental training seminars for teachers in Kdap Platon Creativity Center in Xanthi. One of the projects focused on designing school gardens for IV Thessaloniki’s School for Special Education.
The restoration of Karatasou Park is very important for the Esai en Roi organisation and all previous volunteers have contributed to this mission. Two of my projects contribute to this restorative mission. The first is called Teatro dale movimento or the ‘Moving Theater’; our first stage named Nymphs Playground was set in Karatasou Park. The idea behind this project was to reconnect arts with nature. Furthermore, many plays and performances indoors were cancelled throughout the pandemic. Holding performances in open spaces offered a safer alternative and they had a higher possibility of taking place.
My second project incorporating Karatasou Park was the creation of Thessaloniki’s eco treasure map with 21 natural locations in Thessaloniki and its surrounding area.
Alongside these two activities, I also have been working on my personal project. Both organisations showed their support in different ways to enable my project to happen. It is the translation of an eco-glossary from Bosnian to Greek and English language and a continuation of my previous projects.
I have also had the opportunity to travel around Greece. My favourite trips were to National Park Prespes and Athens. Thessaloniki is truly beautiful. My favourite thing was walking along the pier and White Tower. Food is also very good in Greece, especially sweets.
I’m very thankful to both Miloš (Svitac) and Eleni (EER) for choosing me as a participant in this great project. It has been an opportunity to experience and enjoy Greek culture.