1.5 maanden in Bulgarije
I participated in the excavation of the medieval town of Veliki Preslav, Bulgaria. I also helped with the organisation of some trips and activities for the other volunteers, since I spoke Bulgarian.
I learned a lot about working with people from different backgrounds and different levels of English. I also got a lot of new experience in organising activities, which I had never done before.
My best memory took place in our last weekend, the volunteers organised a festival for the children. We held this festival in a small forest close to the town. We included a lot of different games and competitions and we also cooked some food from our countries. I presented the Netherlands and made some appelflappen.
Often the best things happen when you at least expect them
The volunteers were housed in several rented apartments and rooms in the town of Veliki Preslav. I shared an apartment with one Italian girl.
The other volunteers were amazing and we got along perfectly. Most of the volunteers came from Spain, but we also had people from Turkey, Italy and Lithuania.
In the first week, we did on-arrival training where the goals of the project and the organisation were introduced. We also did a lot of team-building activities, which really helped us work better together. I cannot think of a better start of the project.
Since I am originally from Bulgaria, I did not have a cultural shock. However, I grew up in one of the biggest cities in the country and the difference between a small town and a big city is huge. It was an eye-opening experience. The life of the people there is completely different than the busy life in the city.
I contacted my sending organisation in the beginning of the project. Since I did not need any support during my time in Bulgaria, I only contacted them again after the project finished. Still, our communication was good and I was able to reach them at any point during my stay.
It might be hard at the beginning but stay open-minded for new people and ideas. Often the best things happen when you at least expect them.