The first time I heard about EVS was 4 years ago, when I was 21 years old. Back then I was part of an Erasmus+ Youth Exchange program in Turkey. However, until 1 year ago, I have never thought about going on an EVS mobility.
In light of the Erasmus+ program, I already did my Erasmus+ semester in Ljubljana, Slovenia and participated in eight different youth exchanges and training courses all over Europe. So, I am already addicted to applying for different projects, sometimes, even if it’s just for fun. My EVS application this time was also one of those “just for fun” applications, and I didn’t expect that CID will contact me about my application and for doing a 10 month EVS in Krakow, Poland. I sat in front of my computer, filled in the application for, sent a well prepared motivational letter, and after that, I almost forgot that I even sent all those documents. And all of a sudden CID reached out about my application and asked me if I still want to be part of the project. At that point, I had no idea what I wanted. I only knew that I have a job, I have an opportunity to earn more and be financially independent, and I have an offer that I knew that there was some mystery behind it. Somehow, at that moment, it felt as if this was of greater importance for me and that, had I not accepted this offer back then, I would have never forgiven myself.
To sum it all up, I quit my job, and I moved to Krakow, one of the most beautiful cities in Poland.
I simply cannot compare this international experience with any other international project. These 10 months of my life abroad gave me a chance to widen my knowledge and improve my skills in various parts of my life. Living in such an international environment with 4 people from three different countries – Italy, Spain and Russia (I love my flat-mates©), gave me the opportunity to develop my communication skills, by keeping an open-minded and tolerant attitude. During my work with students ranging from 6 to 13 years old in the Primary School #24 in Krakow, I improved my skills in observing and using pedagogical methods that were used by teachers during their work. Besides, at school, I discovered that I like handcrafting so much! J – Something I’ve never done before and I always thought I wouldn’t like it. Knowing myself I was sure that I will find some time for travelling! Out of the 300 days spent abroad, I was travelling for a total of 43 days! Apart from travelling around Poland I also visited Sweden, Iceland (THE BEST TRIP OF MY LIFE! – I saw the Aurora Borealis, geysers, huge amazing waterfalls – that is not something you see every day, right?), Czech Republic, Hungary and Italy (my first solo trip ever!). By being part of this huge network of international people, I changed the way I see things, and the way I perceive the World.
All in all, I would like to end this by encouraging YOU to give EVS a shot. If you are thinking about it but you are not completely convinced yet, or if it sounds too good to be true, I promise you – it’s not. It is TRUE, the program covers all you expenses (don’t expect any luxuries though). And the things you will learn and the experience that you will get, will change the way you see life. You will feel richer than ever! You’ll feel motivated and encouraged to travel, meet more people and get to know other cultures.
Improving means learning. Learning means educating yourself. And the way you do it- Just go out from your comfort zone!