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From Ohrid to Cagliari: A Volunteer’s Path to Making a Difference

Ciao! My name is Anamarija, I come from Ohrid, Macedonia and I am currently volunteering on an ESC project in Cagliari, Sardinia. Before starting my journey here, as many young adults nowadays, I have found myself in a period of my life in which I have grown an ambition to discover new things and step out of my comfort zone. I have always been curious about different people, cultures, places, and the many possibilities that the world has to offer. I have challenged myself to try living abroad for a while, while doing something useful, and that’s how the idea of participating in an ESC project was born.

There was a huge excitement that came from discovering that I have been accepted to participate as a volunteer in the project called “LIVE” by the organization TDM 2000 ODV. The project aims to promote human rights and volunteering – two very crucial topics nowadays that especially need young people’s attention. I feel very happy to be a part of this mission, and to practice the organization’s values and perspectives.

I am a firm believer that every single person should contribute to making the world a better place to live by thinking globally and acting locally. Volunteering in a cause that supports your values is a great way to practice that.  When you help such organizations and people, you feel happy to be useful and belong to a great deal. 

And that is what solidarity means to me – a sense of unity based on common interests or goals, shared by many individuals, belonging to the same social group, working together, achieving the same goal or fighting together for the same cause. Moreover, in a period of frequent and rapid changes nowadays, it is solidarity that will make us more resilient. As the famous writer J.K.Rowling wrote: “We are only as strong as we are united, and as weak as we are divided”.

Coming from a hometown surrounded by lakes and mountains, Cagliari’s nature and location almost make me feel at home. Spread among hills overlooking the sparkling sea, the city presents a fusion of liveliness and tranquility, where the wind carries scents of citrus, Mediterranean spices and sea salt. This ancient island with millenary culture and unsurpassed nature attracts tourists, students and volunteers more than often, so the city is a home to a lot of young people, sharing together the happiness of being here.

I am very thankful for having the chance to be a part of this wonderful team where I can contribute with my philanthropic soul into reaching the goals of the project. I expect to acquire new skills, learn Italian, collaborate with inspiring people and have another intercultural exchange experience that will make me expand my worldview.

I am already adapting well to the environment and learning new things. To anyone who is hesitant to start their ESC journey, I highly recommend it as it’s good to remember that sometimes the best experiences happen when we have the most doubts, as those are the things that make us stronger.

Anamarija Godzo, VCS volunteer in Italy