EVS Stories: Letter to future volunteers (VI) – by Belinda Ihily

Hi, my name is Belinda and I am from New Caledonia, an island next to Australia. My project’s name was Life Skills for Rural Education and I was in Romania for one year. After this experience, I want to give some advice, I think useful, for the new volunteers.

Firstly, if you come from a country where you are used to seeing foreigners or from a mixed country, note that here it is not always the case, especially if you will live in a small city or village. But, don’t worry, you will have the other EVS volunteers, that will become almost like your family.

Secondly, get used with the idea of being the center of attention, the people will look at you because you will probably be different. Be patient, you will see that people here are very nice.

Thirdly, enjoy this experience from the beginning because you will see that the time passes fast, so don’t wait for the last moment or the last months of your experience to start enjoying.

Then, stay positive and objective whatever the situation that you will cross, always take the bright side, because this experience will happen just one time in your life, and you can discover and learn a lot things.

Use the time in which you are here to visit the places around Baia Mare and in Romania, in general, because, believe me, some places are just beautiful and amazing. And, also, because it’s good to see other things.

When you will go to places, in activities, don’t be scared to communicate with other people because you can make friends that can be part of your EVS life. Also, you can learn Romanian from them, things about the culture or, simply, have fun with them.

Even if your life here in Baia Mare will not be like at home, feel comfortable, adapt yourself to the culture, the time, the way of life and you will see that, in the end, things are not so complicated, nor different.

It is true that here everything is cheaper, but still you have to be careful how you manage your money and your monthly budget.

78 Belinda Ihily Testimonial Life Skills (1)

Always motivate yourself to go to Romanian and English courses because it is very useful and helpful for the present and the future. For example, when you go in the villages and you know how to say some words in Romanian, people are very happy to see that, even if you are a foreigner, at least you try to speak in their language. The feeling is very, very nice. Oh, and also the kids and the teachers you will work with.

The communication between flat mates it’s very important, in my opinion, because if you lack communication, living together can be complicated.

I wish the best for you in this experience, and even if we didn’t meet each other it was my pleasure to write this letter to you. I hope you will find it useful! Enjoy!

Lots of kisses, Belinda

Belinda Ihily (New Caledonia) was hosted in Baia Mare by Team for Youth Association, in the “Life Skills for Rural Education” project, a European Voluntary Service, financed by the European Commission, through the Erasmus Plus Program. This is her last testimonial from Romania. 

78 Belinda Ihily Testimonial Life Skills (2)