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, 18 December 2019

Blog November 2019

Dear readers,

November was a very attractive month. The first week, we went to see Joker at the movies with Sedmi Glas. I really like the performance of the main character during this film and the photography. This film illustrates how easy it is to go crazy in this modern and crazy world.
We were also invited to a training session with young Erasmus volunteers to present the European volunteered programme. It was an enriching experience for me because I was able to practise my English in front of a young audience. On Wednesday, I helped Kaja with the installation of the retrospective exhibition of Pekarna's actions. We made a selection from Gregor Sabolir's photographs to have a coherent exhibition. It was a pleasant moment and Kaja and I were very happy with the result and the work. During the evening, with Nataša we participated in a volunteer promotion event at Štuk, a student bar near the Faculty of Arts in Maribor.

The following week, we met with a seniors' association to try to establish a partnership with them. It was a very friendly moment and we really enjoyed discovering the different activities it offers.There was also the first German lesson by my volunteer colleague Lucas, it is always very enriching and pleasant to see his colleagues' projects. I don't want to learn German but if I have some basic terms it would really be a success;) Another interesting event was the screening of the Rojava Film Festival. It was very moving to hear the festival director explain the situation. I invite you to inform yourself more and support the festival.
I did a lot of graphic work during the month for the different events proposed by Pekarna, notably the Filmopeka poster for Watchmen. The vegan meal was once again very good and we had a really enriching reading by a veterinary school.
At the end of the month, there was a greater focus on promoting the event for International AIDS Day. We collaborated with Radio Mars to have a promotional program for the December 5th event but also to talk about the subject. Jan from Radio Mars helped us develop the show. Simon from DrogArt answered an interview and I made a mixtape for the event.We also had a very enriching training with Tomaz and Natasa to build good workshops with the young people. This gave us many ideas to work more easily with young people. There was also Lucas' Travel Log on taxes in Germany. This has generated a lot of public interaction. And we ended the month with the broadcast of Watchmen;)

This month was also personally, very intense because I discovered many places and participated in many events. I have really forged a good friendship with several people here and I also enjoy discovering Maribor's day and night life. (Big thinking about the Nikola Party in Vetrinjski.)


First ESC Blog Entry – November

I’m Filip from Pale, Bosnia and Herzegovina. After finishing high school in Sarajevo in 2012, I spent four years studying in Prague, and two years in Budapest. This summer I arrived at Maribor to complete my post-graduate internship program (ISP CEU) at Pekarna Magdalenske Mreže (henceforth PMM) and after three charming months in Maribor I got opportunity to become ESC volunteer.

Foto: Aljaž Bašin

In the beginning of November, I had opportunity to help with preparation of screening of the 4thRojava International Film Festival hosted by Iniciativa Mestni Zbor and PMM. Namely, Komîna Fîlm a Rojava is a grassroots institution that was established by local filmmakers and supporters of the revolution in 2015, with the aim of developing the cinema culture in Rojava. Despite the war, embargo and other hardships, they managed to organize the festival three years in row. Because Turkish invasion of Rojava, this year’s realization of the festival was not possible, therefore, supporters of Rojava, and Rojava IFF organized simultaneous screenings of the festival all over the world. Towns from Yugoslav sphere were particularly active in participation, beside Maribor, screenings occurred in Skopje, Belgrade, Podgorica, Novi Sad, Sarajevo, Zenica, Banja Luka, Pula, Zagreb and Ljubljana. The festival starts every year on 13thof November is memory of the massacre which occurred in Amude, a town in Rojava, where a cinema was burned down together with hundreds of children in 1960. After the screening, we had discussion about the self-organization and self-governance in Rojava, as well as complicity of NATO i.e.Slovenia in systematic destruction of life and freedom in Rojava.

Beside Rojava IFF, in the first part of November, together with my fellow volunteers Gilles and Lucas, and our coordinator Nataša, I participated in preliminary meeting with the hosts of intergenerational daily activity center “Društvo TOTI DCA” where we set grounds for the further collaboration with their organization where we are going to produce different workshops with/for them. Afterwards, I attended series of events (Z)GRADIMO organized by PMM where I learned about housing politics in Maribor, lack of regulations and involvement in general by the state and municipality officials, and interesting alternative ways how to counter these discrepancies, such as housing cooperatives.

November was particularly eventful month in Maribor, but I would like to pick out two more events which I have strong feelings about. First is theater play “Calais, Calais” (PMM, KUD Transforma and ZIZ) where protagonists attempt to illustrate hardships and despair of refugees, as well as struggles of activists who are trying to improve conditions where refugees are held in camp Calais (FRA). The theater show calls for rethinking of the borders, modern day migrations and other power relations underpinned with the capitalist, consumeristic logic. Second event is the exhibition of Igor Bošnjak “Projekt Utopija / Project Utopia” hosted by X-OP Association for Contemporary Art in ArtKIT. Artist reinterprets idea of the European continent as a place consumed by its institutional lethargy and historical-superiority issues. The artist simultaneously questions concepts of utopia and dystopia from various standpoints, with the emphasis on European geopolitics and migrations.

Foto: Bošjan Lah


Tuesday, 10 December 2019


The third month as a volunteer for the European solidarity corps and there is a lot to report. For example, Slovenian lessons are slowly but surely entering a hot phase. Which, frankly, is a bit too early for me, but there are worse things to do, for example to think you could play "all I want for Christmas is you" in mid-November. But apart from premature Christmas songs, everything is going great, because a whole bunch of exciting things happened. Which for example? Well, first there was the first German lessons from me, which has given me a lot of fun. In addition, the RUBRIKA: FILMOPEKA took place for the first time. A workshop where you learn how to write a solid film review step by step. And last but not least, Gilles and I recorded a radio broadcast, which consisted an interview and a mix tape. The broadcast served mainly the purpose to draw more attention on the "international Aids evening" on 5.12. Because content wise, we deal with the same topics, albeit on a small scale.

until next month Lucas

Friday, 8 November 2019


Dear readers,

the month of October started with a lot of work with the preparation of StopTrik. StopTrik is a festival dedicated to animation cinema, especially stop motion cinema (images by images). This year's festival had as its theme feminism. Stoptrik lasted one week and includes various events. There are several competitions, the general competition which is divided into 3 screening sessions, the public has the opportunity to vote. There is also a competition for more experimental films called "Borderland". We also find an exhibition in the enclosure of the Vertinsky dvor, I helped to install it. During the week, I participated in the Workshop proposed by Ana Nedeljković and Nikola Majdak "ANIMATED FEMINISMS".

It was a very enriching moment for me and very motivating to regain my creativity. Humanely very rich and intense and I really enjoyed learning the basics of stop motion animation. I was also able to understand a little more about the creative process of a film and the importance of a story board. In addition, this workshop was a means of exchanging ideas on feminism and gender issues with people of different backgrounds.

My favorite part of the festival were not screenings but a play that was presented as part of the festival and performed in the GT22 venue. This play approaches the issue of gender identity in a different way in a manner that is really unexpected to me. After swearing to be chaste, they change their names, dress in men's clothing, and work in the areas reserved for them. In doing so, they gain the respect and power usually intended for the "strong sex». I liked this piece very much because of its form but also because of its problematic, because we feel respect for these women but also a note of criticism about the heteronormativity of society. I have tried to write a review since then because I am really interested in this play.

The following week, we participated in a workshop for children with disabilities, we created a game for guests to play and discuss with us. On Wednesday, we created another game for a workshop organized as part of Children's Rights Week. We imagined a game around fairy tales: the children had to find the original name of the tale, the Slovenian name and the author's country of origin. It was a pleasant moment. We also participated in the stoptrik storage during this week and had several meetings to discuss future projects and the implementation of our personal workshops. On Friday evening, was critical presentation of Palestina at Pekarna Magdalenske mreže. The presentation was done by Slovenian and Palestinian youth who participate in youth exchange in October on which they get to know culture, habits and specialties of both countries. They present the life of today’s youth in occupied Palestine and how do they fight for a better future. I really enjoyed learning more and hearing from young people who are experiencing conflict on a daily basis. It was quite moving. The second part on art in Palestine was also very enriching. For the end of the event, we were able to enjoy falafel and hummus from one of my restaurants in Maribor: Mr Falafel.

After the workshop, I visited Sarajevo with Arman and Louyse, a Brazilian friend. This trip was very interesting for many reasons. I always have in mind the images of the Sarajevo conflict when I was a child, and arriving in this city was quite emotional for me. This trip taught me a lot about the conflict. We discovered the different districts. The city develops like a chronological frieze from east to west. The eastern part has an architecture very marked by oriental culture. There are several mosques and the Turkish district which looks like zouk with several small shops. Along the river, we find an architecture more typical of Austro-Hungarian architecture. Finally, the west is the new Sarajevo with a modernist and brutalist architecture. However, this city is really very beautiful and I really appreciated the dynamics and the very special atmosphere. It's a mixture of different types of culture and I really hope to return one day. Maybe for the film festival.
I really enjoyed attending the Vegan meal organized every month. The first part was a reading dealing with analogical links between Marx and Engel's philosophy, modernist architecture in relation to the meat industry and capitalism. It was very instructive to address this issue through this process. I had prepared a vegan pumpkin pie for the occasion, it was my first and it was a success. :) Following Friday I attend the opening of Martin Ramoveš's exhibition: Po robu. It is an exhibition based on Martin Ramoveš latest comic strip in homage to the Slovenian poet Ivan Rob. It's an autobiographical comic strip. The opening was followed by live show of the rock band of Martin Ramoveš.

The next Monday, we visited Kibla portal with Sedmi Glas. We have been learning in a workshop on how to make a podcast. We have tried to make a podcast with Živa, the curator of the exhibition and after Živa mad a tour about the exhibition. The exhibition was really mixte about techniques and kind of piece of art. The meaning of exhibition is to talk about the actual situation of the world in a critical way. Since I'm here, I learn a lot about the Balkan history and the refugee situation in the world.

On Wednesday, we meet Nejc from a Drogart. Drogart is an organisation about prevention and sensibilisation of drugs and sexuality. We talked about the event for the World Aids Day we will organised. This event will be on the 5th of December and one person from Drogart will come to talk about the different action of Drogart. After the lecture we will watch "120 Heartbeat by minutes" and talk about the movie.
On Thursday evening, there was the first Filmopeka held by ESC volunteer and it was the last day of Arman staying in the organization. The movie was "The bitter tears of Petra von kant" from the director Rainer Werner Fassbinder. Really interesting movie andI really like the esthetic of this film.
On Friday, I was a volunteer for a LGBTIQ event named "All for Rainbow". We were in the center of Maribor and invite people to play a game of sensibilisation about the privilege to be heterosexual into this society.

See you in November. :)


October. The leaves begin to change like the tasks of the esc volunteers. A lot of very nice and interesting stuff happened. We engaged in new projects and even develop our own, but we also sunk even deeper into the ones that already existed.

Many new people and faces crossed our path and become friends. The workshops and events that took place were just amazing. At the program Sedmi glas we got a private tour through an exhibition, free tickets for a great theater performance and the chance to learn a lot about theater criticism and podcasts in very exciting workshops. Also the Filmopeka where the Werner Fassbinder movie “die bitteren Tränen der Petra von Kant“ was a pure joy for the eyes of every movie enthusiast. All in all the month was as beautiful as the colors of autumn.


Monday, 14 October 2019

Maribor ...

Dear readers,
my name is Gilles, I'm 29 years old and I from France, Limoges. I come to Slovenia to be volunteer inside the organization Pekarna Magdalenske mreze at Maribor for 10 months.
I left Paris on the 2 of September by the bus, the travel was long, 20 hours, but I had time to enjoy the different landscape and prepared myself for my new life. I arrived on the 3 of Septembre in the middle of the afternoon at Maribor. In the railroad station hall, I finally meet in real life my EVS Arman, and Lucas and Natasa our coordinator. They accompanied me to my flat with. I live near to the main square, in the Jewish quarter. I was very tired after this long trip and I went directly to bed to be ready for the week.
The firsts days at work was more into observation and discover the coworkers, the workplace and explanation about the structure and actions. Days after days, we learn more about different points of the organization. Primoz proposes of us to have a historical visit of Maribor. We talk about the red bridge, talk about the architecture of the casino and the main square. As well, we visit Lent quarter and see the Oldest Vine in the world and go to the stadium because the football club is important in Maribor. On Friday, we went to « La cantina » for a dinner with the team Pekarna, it’s was really great and we meet our two mentor, Maja and Matevž.
During the weekend, I discover by myself Maribor with my beautiful bike (named Darko) than Pekarna rented me. I ride near to the river Drava and enjoy the beautiful landscapes than Slovenia are.
We went to the Galerija K18 to visit the exhibition of Simon Farid. This exhibition is about the representation of the guide into mass society and cultural institution. The works of Simon Farid is like a report of a different kind of research about the presence of the guide inside movie by chronological issues, or a list of artists have been worked guide into museums before the celebrity. Galerija K18 is a gallery for promoting the contemporary art scene. Pekarna programs cultural events and exhibitiosn inside this gallery. Every Monday we are going to Vetrinjski dvor for the Sedmi Glas program. Sedmi Glas is a program created by the organization to invite people who are learning Slovenian languaget through culture. This time it was a workshop about theatre play. The trainer was Barbara and she introduce Theatre of the oppressed by the Brazilian author Augusto Boal. It’s a theater trying to include any kind of people (amateur / confirmed) in play to try and talk about the different type of topics. The topics and the scenography is generated by themselves. It’s was interesting to try because I never try this kind of theatre.

During week we discover and meet some partners. We meet Damijan, we will work with him for Filmopeka. Filmopeka is an event for watching a film and have time for questioning or share your feeling after the watching. Damijan work for the Slovenian Télévision, he programming films for the channel. I think he will be a good helper for this project. We are also meet Urska and Jan during this week, they work in an organization for helping Refugees named «Slovene Philanthropy», we speak about the possibility to create a partnership. We also went to GT22, this is an artistic place with a space for exhibition, theater room, dark room..… Gregor was nice and invite into a Cyanotype workshop. This workshop was really interesting to make workshop with teenagers about analog photography.
I went to Ljubljana during the weekend and discovered the joys of Slovenian carpooling named « Prevoz ». I met a girl during the trip and we became a friend. We went to a concert at the Museum of Modern Art on Friday night and I joined colleagues for Saturday to see Gramatik, a Slovenian DJ in Kino Šiška. I enjoyed the architecture of Ljubljana. It's a strange mix of art nouveau and modernism. I also discovered the alternative space of Metelkova and the different clubs, including the Klub Tiffany, the LGBT + club of Ljubljana.
Sunday, I helped Arman to uninstall the exhibition in gallery K18.

The next week, we went to Lasko for the arrival training. Lasko is a small city in the center of Slovenia. This city is famous for the beer factory. The training was into a hostel and thermal/aquatic center. We meet all EVS just arrived in Slovenia. We participate in some activity to understand the meaning of EVS and talking about fears and feelings. The most important for me was to have a chance to meet other people in other organizations who live the same adventure than me. I meet a new friend and I hope to create a network of volunteers. The last day of the training we are the possibility to meet some mid-term and I meet some people interested and active on an organization for LGBTQI+ rights.

On Monday, we talk about the preparation of Stop Trik festival. Stop Trik festival is a festival of stop motion animation film. This project was created by EVS volunteers many years ago and stay alive. This is a huge festival with projection, film contest, workshop, and exhibition. On Monday and Tuesday, we take time to create some stencil and cine lightbox for the festival. In the same time, we help student for the Protest Climate Change to make some banners and slogans because the march is Friday.
Friday’s event brought a lot of people back and we walked through the city singing different kinds of slogans for ecology. It’s was a real interesting experience.

See you in October for the next episode.


Hey real quick I’m Lucas, 19, from Germany and one of the new ESC volunteers in Pekarna Magdalenske mreže. This is my first month in Maribor. The first month as an ESC volunteer. A month full of expectations and new experiences.
So what exactly does an ESC volunteer do in his first month? If you want to have this question answered as short as possible, then stay tuned. Here's what to do: meet new people and make friends, get involved in the new work environment, attend cool Sedmi glas workshops (by the way, they are always Monday evening and totally interesting so check it out), the laying of the foundation stone for own projects, which contribute to already existing classics like StopTrick and the Filmopeka and of course the on-arrival training where you meet other volunteers and become friends with them.