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.

Za bolj podrobne informacije nas lahko kontaktiraš na:

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

EVS Experience in Maribor (Slovenia) – March 2018

It is incredible how fast time goes. Almost two months have passed since I arrived to Slovenia.

I am truly enjoying this beautiful country and this small but cozy city. Now, I can say that my EVS is ongoing and I feel it is already amazing. One month ago, I confessed that I was a bit scared of everything that was going on in my new life in Slovenia: new people, new challenges, a lot of ideas and new projects..., but nowadays, I feel much more happy and sure that this project really fits me and that I will make the best of this experience. And then, what to say about Pekarna? I JUST LOVE IT. Each day in the office is great and there is always a perfect excuse to learn something new and to share with them our feelings and ideas. We always receive smiles and love from them. We are already busy. This organization is a non-stop World Changing Machine. In March, I really loved the LGBT+ workshops in the schools and the welcoming people we met there. They were willing to learn from us and also opening to teach us new things. Other day I remember with special caress is 8th of March. We went out to the streets of Maribor to shout women’s rights and to sing beautiful songs. My first time singing in a chorus and in Slovene. It was fantastic!

During this month, a lot happened. I will always remember the day Esme and I tried to do hick hiking to go to Ljubljana. It was a total fail: rainy, cold and windy day. People couldn’t see our wet banner and they just splashed water on us with the cars. But, as Slovene say, to je življenje. We laughed a lot, it was hilarious. We also made a trip to the beautiful Zagreb, the Croatian capital city. It was my second time there, but in this occasion was different. In august 2017 I had the opportunity to see the city in summer and now I saw the beauty of cold and snowy winter. I went with the others EVS volunteers. I really like spending time with them. I was also great to meet again and spend a weekend with my friend Katka in Ljubljana. It had been a long time since we met for the last time, I really missed her!

We started a Slovene course at University. I am super excited about it! I am very glad that some people are starting speaking with us in Slovene. It’s super KUL! The best thing ever is when you can understand (if you are veeeeery very lucky) 10% of what they are talking about. But I am sure we will make it in the upcoming months.

I am also very happy because we finally met Tili, Nataša’s puppy. She is the calmest and the sweetest dog I have ever met. And of course, she is one of our team!

Hvala lepa, Slovenija.

Friday, 2 March 2018

My experience in Maribor

Dear Slovenia,

I still don't know many of your cities, and even less their names, and I still don't know a lot of places that I'm sure you have hidden from tourists (and some of those that you don't), but the little I know about you is charming me, from the cities that I've been, like Maribor, Ptuj, Koper or Ljubljana, to the people that I meet in them.
From Maribor I prefer the contrasts, modern, classic buildings and some old houses damaged by the passage of time make, at least for me, this a unique city. A place smaller than the city where I come from and still offers everything I never thought I could have in mine.

I hope we get to know each other more thoroughly in the coming months.

With love, Jesús.

... my first month in Maribor and Slovenia ...

I think it is quite hard to put into words, all the things that have happened during my first month in Maribor and Slovenia. So many new people and places, ideas and languages all flying round my head, it is both overwhelming and exciting! So I will just tell you about the things that have stood out for me the most.

Firstly, THE SNOW. People keep saying that we arrived just in time for the real Slovenian winter. It has snowed almost continually since we arrived and it is hard to believe that Maribor could ever be green and warm. I feel as if we are all sliding and shuffling about like penguins! It has been funny to experience all this snow with Rafa, from Portugal, and Jesús, from Spain. In the beginning we were like children, now Rafa can't believe his eyes when he sees yet another week of below freezing temperatures and snow forecasted...“Minus 15! Minus 15!!! Che Cristo!”

This brings me to the next thing, THE OTHER EVS VOLUNTEERS. I feel very lucky to have met and be working with Jesús and Rafa, they are GREAT! It was also an amazing experience to meet the 18 other EVS volunteers at our arrival training. Our week together in Koper was an exhausting, intense but a very special experience, by the end we felt like a very close group of friends. I don’t think anyone of us wanted to go home, and so we all went to Ljubljana for a karaoke night at Lezbični bar! Finally, I wanted to say something about THE PEOPLE FROM INFOPEKA. I still feel like I am getting my head round around the many branches of Pekarna Magdelenska Mreže but it feels really nice to be learning again, to discuss political and cultural ideas and to have the space and time to put into words and actions my feelings and thoughts. Everyone here has made us feel really welcome and I feel excited to become even more involved!


EVS Experience in Maribor (Slovenia)

Almost three weeks have passed since I arrived for my EVS to Maribor, the second largest city of Slovenia. I have not spent all this time in the city, but I still feel I can make my first conclusions about local people and language, culture and about my feelings living here.

It is my second time in this tiny but lovely country. I came to visit a friend for five days last year and I enjoyed it very much, but this time was going to be completely different. In December 2017, I received a very positive e-mail of our organization, in which it was told to me and my other two colleagues and already friends, Esme from Scotland and Jesús from Spain that the project had been approved and we were coming to Slovenia on the first week of February 2018. I felt excited and nervous at the same time.

February arrived and me also to this unknown city. I confess that these first weeks had been a roller coaster for me: a lot of new people, new challenges, a lot of ideas and new projects, cold weather, a hard language and a completely different life. Although, I am very happy and willing to make the best of this experience. If I think about the time I have already spent in Slovenia, there are some things I couldn’t not mention. The first one is the weather. I have loved the snow since I was a child, but I swear this is the first real winter I have ever experienced. It was pretty funny to feel -16 degrees while skyping with my parents just to show them the snowstorm downtown. I also learnt how to walk, or better said, skate in the frozen and slippy streets of this city. I cannot wait, or as Slovenians said “komaj čakam” for a green and warm Maribor. By the way, I am enjoying a lot learning Slovene, this sonorous and full of tongue twisters language that reminds me, somehow, of Portuguese. It has been very nice learning it with locals. I cannot say anything bad about Slovenians. Calm, respectful and kind people. I will always remember the first time I learnt how to say “can you give a plastic bag?” or “A mi lahko daste eno vrečo, prosim?”. The cashier couldn’t stop laughing on me in a good way.

One of the best things during this month had been to get to know a lot of new people from all over Europe. Different cultures and backgrounds that enrich us. I love spend time with them. We have created a great work and travel team. The on-arrival training during our second week was amazing and special. Now, I feel I know more about myself and about what I want for my future. I grew personally and I got to know better my weaknesses and strengths. I think Maribor and this EVS experience will organize my mind and will make me stronger to achieve my dreams.

Hvala lepa, Slovenija.