In the past two weeks, the current Italian volunteer working in EVS, Yuri, implemented his idea of having an EVS exchange with a peer. After discussing about it with the National Agency and several other EVS volunteers, he and other friends promoted the idea by making a Facebook group with detailed program and rules. Unfortunately, the will was not enough for everyone, but he finally managed to match his energies and curiosity with the ones of a Spanish peer and friend, reaching a common goal.
The interest of Yuri took him to contact the adorable Veronica, a Spanish girl volunteering in Jaunuolių Dienos Centras, in Panevėžys, so to start the experience. First of all, she took a part in the daily routine of LGL’s workers for three days, collaborating in the Volunteers’ Lab by designing some of the beautiful pins that will be soon available in the online shop. You can find her point of view here.
Afterwards it was Yuri’s time to get involved in a different working reality. Starting from tourism-guiding through Vilnius, he got in touch with a small Italian group hosted by the organization in Panevėžys, thanks to another Erasmus+ project. With the beginning of the week, he got also involved in the everyday life of social workers and their colleagues volunteers. The unexpected cheerfulness of the frequenters of the daily center was the best surprise that could caught him: working with diversable and neuro-diverse adults reveled to be even more interesting and positive than hoped. Passing time with them was not about taking care and helping, but about giving them the attentions not everyone seems willing to and accompanying them the day long.
“The satisfaction their smiles gave me are not really valuable in time or money”
In between the several activities organized to keep the goers to the institution entertained and busy there are also events like the International Theatre Festival of People with Disabilities “Hearts of beating hope” – which Yuri had the pleasure to attend – that turn on a light of hope in these people’s life.
Once after Yuri’s departure, Veronica put in place the personal project developed during her EVS experience, which our Italian volunteer had the honor to had previewed: her portraits exhibition.
Last but not least, our EVS volunteers had the opportunity to participate and help in an event about EVS volunteering hosted in the central square of the small city, showing up the EVS spirit and sharing with the commoners his country and his experience.