I don’t know if I already realised but yes, the project is over for me! 

When I look back at the last two months, many beautiful moments cross my mind. And I can only feel grateful that I had the opportunity to live this experience.

During these two months I have learned a lot. I have improved skills in digital dessign and social networks, which was not that complicated because my knowledge was not much, but still… I’m impressed. Working with an international team of people from different cultures is quite enriching and thanks to that I have developed teamwork skills. I have learned to listen more and, above all, to listen better. Although I already had experience facilitating activities for young people, it was the first time I did this for youth over 18, so I’m very happy that I had the opportunity to do it and to continue to learn and to get better. I also let my creativity surface and got very good results. 

When I started working in the office, I realized that this project was going to be as good as I wanted it to be. The more initiative and ideas you had, the better the events would be and the more would enjoy the rest! And when I saw that the other volunteers were such proactive people, we started organizing lots of events! I also developed my personal project, which consisted of an ECO-month with sustainable workshops every Monday and the local community was always very engaged. It was a pleasure to organize and participate in all these wonderful events where we were all able to learn from each other. 

I feel happy, lucky and grateful for all the learning. But this learning has not come alone, it has come by the hand of all the beautiful people who have crossed my path during these two months. From them I have learned everything. We used to say that the small family that we had created it was our safe space. It was a safe space because we could feel comfortable and be ourselves, express our feelings and opinions without being judged, you knew that they were there to listen to you and to hug you when you needed. And of course, we were very good at having fun! 

I really enjoyed learning about the bulgarian culture, trying the typical dishes such as banitsa, shopska salad, baklava or the typical drink that won’t leave you indifferent, rakia! We had the opportunity to attend to an event in a small village in the mountains, Yakoruda, the liberation day of Bulgaria, 3rd of March. It was unforgettable, after a road though mountains on an old typical train, all the village was waiting for us with sweets, traditional dresses, flags and dancing. We looked like 10 more bulgarians! (Actually, not really, everyone knew we were foreigners but we were proud of it with our bulgarian flag!). 

Thank you Kiril & Ivan for engaging young people and giving them the opportunity to fulfill their lives with great moments and memories. Thank you G.B. simply for being.  And thanks to all the people who crossed my path in these two months because you are already a part of me 🙂 

Every weekend was a new adventure and lots of laughs. We have eaten amazing salads in Melnik, enjoyed the craft beer in Kapana, the creative district in Plovdiv, watched the sunset on the top of Veliko Tarnovo, hitchhiked to Stob Pyramids, visited museums in Sofia, walked around Sandanski, swam in the Black Sea (actually we didn’t because it was cold, but it would have been nice), done a snowball fight in Blagoevgrad and enjoyed the bars when they finally opened… Every moment was precious! 

This article is created by Paula GARCIA RODRIGUEZ as part of her personal project. She is a participant in the “ESC: European Skills and Competencies” project, co-funded by the Bulgarian National Agency of Erasmus+ Program Human Resource Development Center.