I went to the EVS arrival camp from the 5th to 9th of March. The camp was in Laugarvatn. The place was really beautiful. I was very impressed by the nature. The accommodation was cozy, they used old-fashioned interior materials. What is EVS and why did I go in this camp?
The EVS is short for European Voluntary Service. Erasmus+ (the EU programme for education, training, youth and sport) offers projects for young people and the EVS programme is one of them. There are volunteer projects in different countries, for a specified period up to 12 months. In this way people can live abroad, they get room, board, travel and pocket money while they are volunteering in the hosting country. This project helps volunteer develop intercultural competences, because volunteers have a similar experience as exchange students. Especially if this is the first time that they are living abroad. At the camp I met people from France, Belgium, Latvia, Romania, Slovenia, Poland, Portugal and Iceland. They came with different organisations including SEEDS. SEEDS is also promoting intercultural understanding, environmental protection and conducts cultural projects in Iceland.
The first day we had a teambuilding day. It was good for everybody as we were more open minded after this day. The second and third day welearned about Icelandic culture. We were lucky, because it was the period of Öskudagur, Sprengidagur and Bolludagur. The last two days we talked about active citizenship and learning styles. An important thought for me was that we were always learning. I believe that life offers us opportunities to practices these skills. Every situation, argument and relationship shows new solutions for us. If we are doing something, it has aneffect on us, to the other citizens and to the environment. Our decisions can change our world a little bit at a time. You have to be considered of your actions.
We talked, played and swam together when we had free time or coffee break. The trainers were flexible. Their goals were sharing their experience with us and having fun. I am grateful for meeting these nice people.
Text and pictures: Szilvia Szeles, EVS volunteer