European Voluntary Service

This is Pekarna's blog for EVS volunteers. Pekarna is a sending and hosting/receiving organisation for EVS volunteers and their volunteers (send and hosted ones) will keep you up to date about their work.

Evropska prostovoljska služba

Pekarna Magdalenske mreže Maribor te vabi, da se tudi ti pridružiš množici prostovljcev/-k Evropske prostovoljne službe (EVS) in odpotuješ v organizacijo po svoji izbiri v drugo državo EU. Smo pošiljajoča in gostiteljska organizacija EVS, ki mladim od 17. in do 30. leta za obdobje največ enega leta uredi vse podrobnosti za brezskrbno in povsem brezplačno delovanje v tujini.
Evropska prostovoljna služba je del programa ERASMUS + Mladi v akciji.

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Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Creativity out-of-the-box

In the beginning of the month I had the chance to participate in an Youth Exchange titled “We are all equal in creativity” which brought together 30 different young people from 6 European countries. Aim of the project was, through creative methods – such as theater, storytelling, and creative writing – to gain useful skills that we could later use in our work with discriminated groups, as means towards social integration and empowerment.

As part of the project, we also had the opportunity to meet with some people, currently asylum seekers in the area of Faenza in Italy and share with them some thoughts on integration.

Even if the project was quite more loose than I expected and despite the fact that we didn’t dig into creative writing as much as I hoped for, this type of gatherings always leave you some space for personal reflection and interpretation and always something comes out, even if at first glance some things may seem a bit pointless or excessive.

So, what did I get? After an engaging discussion on searching for possible solutions to the refugee situation, going through inner personal stages – from desperation of not being able to find any possible solution to numbness and incapability – I realized that yes, sometimes the bigger image seems already broken and unrepairable, but also wasting your individual possibility of contribution does not make things better. So of course our personal interactions and behavior in our microcosm may have nothing to do with the monsters crawling further away, but probably it is a step towards something, it is something concrete not just a discussion, a recommendation, a proposal.

But also this project left another bitter taste in the end; these people, these “asylum seekers” as everyone now wants to label them, giving them an impersonal and cold identity connected to their life situation have so many new things to fight for in this European environment. It is not just about making friends and finding a job, as our possible needs would be as European citizens migrating into another EU country. Their need is bigger and greater: it is a call for respect and understanding, a vital need that we tend to neglect. For some it can be easy to attain for others maybe not so undeniable.

So yes, in this cases you should think out of our microcosm, out of our little box of life, fears and expectations. 

In any case, I had some unexpected acquaintances, talked a lot, contemplated and collaborated with so many different people that I probably would not have the chance to do in any other case.


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