With their adventure in Austria coming to an end, Ana, Yassine, Shu and Tereza have made some thoughts about their experience in Graz. With each day and week, they collected memories and little life lesson, which are important to all of us.
Each one of our volunteers had her own and unique experience. Depending on their background and on the different working atmosphere, they all got something to cherish from these 6 weeks in Graz. Shu was one of the volunteers who had a very special experience in Graz, partly being her first time in Europe and having to go through a rough change of background. Overcoming the cultural shock and communication problems, she started to get deeper into the Austrian traditions. Being it her first time working in a cafeteria and restaurant, Shu was happy to learn how to cook Austrian recipes. Moreover, having to work with disabled people, who had difficulties moving and communicating, she could learn more about herself and how to approach people with special needs. As always, for Shu, it is always important to smile!
Tereza on the other hand had to work with long-term unemployed young people, so she had another type of challenge to deal with. She explored four different projects and therefore got to know a lot about different social problems and how young people face them. What she points out is the importance of liking or at least not hating your job. Being motivated and trying to find motivation in your working life is of great importance. According to Tereza, the government should push young people to make an effort for their lives and not help them dwell in an unproductive routine. For our dear Ana, this has been an experience which will be hard to forget and is very grateful to her buddy Carla and all her working colleagues for the great summer spent together. She believes that everything happens for a reason!
Yassine also had an important experience in Austria. He is happy to have learnt to rely more on himself and become more confident. Having to work with disabled people, he has become more patient and understanding. He could also learn how to cook simple recipes, which he will be happy to cook back at home, and most importantly, he overcame his indisposition to wash dishes, which now seems to be quite unproblematic to him. Another important fact was becoming more independent while living away from his parents and more responsible. He now wants to start drawing his own path in life.
At the end of the six weeks, what matters the most is what our lovely volunteers will take with them and what made a difference in their lives. For Shu, this was the first time in another continent and she made the most out of it. She is grateful to have had the chance to be part of the program and thanks all her colleagues and partners.
For Tereza on the other hand, these six weeks were a very well spent time. She was always very motivated and eager to improve herself. According to her there are some points that might need improvement, such as the position of the volunteers in the company and the possibility to have more opportunities to make their own programs and have a stronger say in the program.
These six weeks have certainly given a lot to all of us. Both volunteers and us working closely with them have gained a lot and will not forget this experience we shared.