Why I chose to do EVS: I think that this was the chance of my life, this is what I was waiting for. Making an EVS is a great chance to know another country, other ways of lives, knowing new people and different experiences of work.
From: Malaga, Spain
Volunteering in: Denpasar, Bali, (Indonesia)
I wanted to have the opportunity to bring my experience, my desire to working and learning, my availability, my hope and everything in my power to help children and young people because this is my vocational job. My sending organization in Malaga, Asociacion Intercambia really encouraged me to have an experience like this, thank you very much.
About placement: I’m working with Act-Global, a young NGO that works in the UK and in Bali, they are very committed to community development, environmental pollution, peace and intercultural relations.
About Bali: Investigating about Bali when I was still in Spain, I discovered that Balinese people are famous for their smile, but until I arrived here I couldn’t see by myself as friendly and smiling they are. This is a wonderful place where you can head out to the front door and be invited to your neighbors wedding , go there with your slippers and being treated like one more of them. It has many amazing places to visits, things to learns a people to know.
My accomodaton: We live in a very nice house in a neighborhood called Pamogan , is not a touristic place so I think that our neighbors maybe are thinking: What that those Bule (that’s the way they call foreigners are doing here walking? Because here, anyone walks, there are no sidewalk, here everyone drive thought the crazy traffic.
We are staying at a two floors house. On the main floor we have the Act-Global offices, the kitchen and a bathroom and upstairs we have a big living-room a bathroom (without hot water) And two beautiful shared rooms. I sleep with my mate Liis in the same room, and Alp and Alejadro share the other room, we are a really good team
My social life: Since we arrived to Bali we have met a lot of people from different places, most of them from JAVA, it seems that many people from that place came here to find better opportunities of jobs. We have made some trips: we have visited some amazing beaches, temples, rice fields… everything here is so different and amazing. We also have assisted to a couch-surfing meeting, where we found many interesting people from all over the world, just one week here and we have already done so many things. I feel so happy to be here.
Learning the language: On our daily life, we are speaking English all the time, so I am learning and improving two languages at the same time. That’s cool and tired 😉 Bahasa Indonesia is not a difficult language, and we are having an intensive course these days to learn the basics words and expressions.Then we will have two hours classes once a week so, I hope to learn a lot until I finish my volunteering, talking with local people will be the best way to learn the language and also the culture.
In Spain, I finished my studies on “Social Education” Degree, and as I knew that I wanted to work with children and young people I applied to study a Master Degree called “Crime and social intervention with children”. After that, I worked in a neighborhood with needs of social transformation as instructor of educational support, street educator with young people and animator in a programme where we worked with families that ned strategics to improve their relations. Then, I worked in an orphanage for 5 months and there I meet kids and mates who teacher me a lot, and made me a better educator.
It seems that my destiny was leaving all those thing for a time and coming to Bali. When I think about I have been living here for three weeks, all the the thing I’ve learnt, the places I’ve discovered, the people I’ve met… I can’t avoid asking myself…How many wonderful things are waiting to be found in these months of EVS.
One of my fears when I thought about coming to Bali it was the food…but surprisingly, I’m doing here what I have never done, I’m trying a lot of different meals, and I’m enyoying a lot this food. Many fruits, different tastes, colours and a lot of chili, everywhere, rice and chili.
In Bali we have tropical climate so there are two seasons: Rainy season, from October till March and Dry season, from April till the end of September. Both seasons are quite warm, so it’s very hot right now but we can’t go to the beach often because it’s quite bad, almost cloudy and rainy, sometimes we are lucky and we have a little of sun.
Our Banjar has invited us to participate on the activities they organize, Balinese dance classes for girls, music classes for boys, ceremonies,… They are teaching us a lot of things and we feel very fortunate to have their collaboration
Last Tuesday we had the chance to go to a first birthday ceremony in Ibusindi’s hometown (she is a very good cooker and she is the responsible to dress us up with our Balinese costumes, because we don’t know how to do it ) This is a very special ceremony for Balinese people with many offerings, traditions and, of course, food.
We are creating our own projects and we have started looking for the schools, orphanages and banjars in our area to find centers interested on working with us.
Alp, Diana and me, spent two days visiting different places, most of them very happy to work with us, and in one of the elementary school that we visited children really loved us, they wanted to touch us and even they asked us to sign their notebook, crazy experience!
At office time, we have many things to do, creating new proyects need a lot time, reflection and concentration.
Sorry for my English..It’s one of the things that I’m improving here. I will tell you more things next month
Almost in the middle of my EVS, fearing the moment when Pedro, from my sending organization INTERCAMBIA, writes me asking me to start looking for my flying tickets! The time go so fast and I still have a lot of things to do here…
Having fun with Mustika’s kids
I’m just recovering myself from a surgery… around three weeks ago I had to practice what I learnt about the insurance process because I cut one of my foot’s tendon with a glass of water that felt on the floor… At first, we thought it was nothing because it was a tiny cut… but I couldn’t put up my thumb…So I finally decided to go to the doctor… and he, smiling, told me: When do you want the surgery…? I really thought that he was joking, but, no… after three weeks, having cards from three different hospitals and using the bandage and crutches, now I can finally walk and restart my normal life here.
Luckily, even having my family and friends far from me, I have another little family here who have been taking care of me… Thank you very much for washing my clothes, cooking me a delicious breakfast every morning, kidnap me, make me laugh, support me, carrying me to go up the stairs or sleeping in the hospital with me. THANK YOU. I’m so glad to have meet so nice people here
Even having some difficulties to walk, these days a lot of amazing things were going on in Bali, and I couldn’t miss it. For example, March was a moth full of ceremonies because balinese people were getting ready for their New Year’s celebration on the beginning of April when we could enjoy the Festival of Giants (Ogoh-Ogoh) and Nyepi day.
Creativity session in Elisama orphanage
Life in Bali is not just temples and beaches, we spend most of the time planning our sessions at the office, this process ca be boring sometimes, but I think it’s necessary, we are creating our own project and we are learning a lot from it.
Mimic game with kinder-garden kids in Mustika school
Now that I’m starting to feel myself better, I can finally deliver all my session and I’m so happy about that.. I really need to work with the kids. My two main projects with them are CREATIVITY and ENVIRONMENTAL, in both of them I try to teach them English, positive values, and new topics for them using non-formal education methods and learning a lot from them.
Maybe the most difficult thing for me here, when I try to deliver my sessions It’s the language, even thought I’m learning quite fast, the difficulty for me to plan a session in English and Bahasa Indonesia, when I don’t perfectly control none of them it’s a challenge every day, and this fact makes me feel that I’m learning and growing so much every moment I spend here.
Sorry for my English mistakes, you know, I’m learning. Have a good day!!