Action for Youth and Volunteerism — Cyprus


Dates: 20.4. – 20.10.2015

Venue: Limassol, Cyprus

Programme, action: Erasmus+, European Voluntary Service

Participant: Marie Přibylová

Something about the project: It was composed as long-term EVS, the youth organisation KEY – Innovation for Culture Education and Youth was the hosting organisation. It focuses mainly on three areas/topics: education, culture and youth.They create, organise and implement seminars, trainings and informative events. Furthermore, KEY organisation provides an opportunity for youth to improve their creative spirit and other skills through participation on culture events, youth exchanges and trainings on Cyprus as well as abroad.

The tasks for the volunteer: The project aims to involve young volunteers in the activities of our youth centre. This involvement will be done by giving space to volunteers to organize different leisure time activities for young people, help them learn, obtain knowledge, gain skills and become more active citizens. Furthermore, the volunteers will get involved with all the on-going actions of our youth centre.

The participants will have the chance to enrich their knowledge, develop new skills, get involved with the local society, express themselves and organize or lead to actions developed by the organization or even themselves. The volunteers will also be able to participate to different kind of projects / actions carried out by the hosting organization, such as educational visits, fairs, donations, youth mobility programmes and much more.

EVS report: Two years, when I have opened the door to the mystery of the youth exchanges. Thanks to European youth centre Břeclav I got information about possibility to go abroad, creating international friendships and making myself better person who is able to think about the human rights, discrimination or must to protect the nature.

One of the project with the EYCB was a youth exchange in Cyprus. It was for me one of the best week in my life. I learned a lot of things, improved my English skills. I felt in that moment that I am not here for the last time. Two years later, I got an offer to participate European Voluntary Service, volunteering with the supporting of programme Erasmus+. Guess where? In the same organization where I participate two years ago in Cyprus. I decided that I did not want to miss this opportunity. I wanted to be the part of volunteers team for 6 months. It began arranging everything, preparing cover letter, CV and meetings with Kuba from EYCB who has given me a lot of advices. After a few weeks I got to know that I was selected and I become the official European volunteer. I did not have a clear idea of what wil be the concent of activities. I did not have a big expectations.

The day D came and I arrived to the sunny Limassol. What were my feelings? Fear of the new environment, but also ready to be faced new challenges. Cypriot workers from NGO KEY warmly welcomed me. I was accommodated with other volunteers from Italy and France in the cozy and charming house. We worked in the office which was located right next to our home. Office and house was connected by a large garden, where we held our events and of course sometimes relaxed :). Regarding the activities, they were really various. Personally, I had the opportunity to try writing project applications for grants to organize a variety events for youth.

What kind of events we were doing? Together with three volunteers we have built a strong community of people who have spent time together in the summer months at our garden linking our various activities. We have organized several thematic night such as documentary movie night, game board night, Latin American, French, Italian, Czech and other nights. I must say that we have achieved something truly remarkable. We have created the environment for foreigners living in Limassol and locals to spend their time by doing something useful. Sometimes happened that we had more than thirty visitors. Behind this there was too much effort. All of our volunteers and also our EVS coordinator in Limassol were working hard. This is one of the things that a person participating on EVS really teach us…how to work in international team effectively. In addition we have been responsible for other activities. Every other day of the week we helped in local charity, we worked with older people who spoke only Greek.  Another challenge was – to learn the basics of the Greek language. The host organization has provided us free language course. Charity, organizing events, project applications…it was not the end of our activities. I personally became the founder of the International Club in Limassol targeted at understanding between locals and foreign citizens. Furthemore, we tried how it is to talk to the radio and keep our radio programme. What about if some problems will appear during your EVS? Each of the volunteer has mentor who can help you any time. You have also support from your project coordinator, the host organization and volunteers. In conclusion, I would like to summarize what the European Voluntary Service means for me. Improving English, new and strong friendship with people from all over Europe, development of my personality, being more adaptable to new situations and being grateful for every minute in my life…then I changed my mind, how to behave to the people around and also to the nature. In the end I would like to thank to European youth centre Břeclav that gave me this possibility to participate in EVS. I would like to really thank you all. 🙂

Marie Přibylová

You may like