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How does it feel to be a volunteer?

To be a volunteer means to work voluntarily or for free for personal improvement. This is why I also decided on that step. I decided to get to know myself better and get out of my comfort zone, so I went to volunteer in Antalya.

My main task as a volunteer was to help children from 6 to 8 years old to master the English language more easily. The feeling was amazing. Almost every day I saw the smiling and energetic children, who eagerly wait for the English class to come and for their favorite teacher, as they said themselves. As time passed, they became more and more curious about the language, and I became more attached to them every day. At first, I was a little afraid, I didn’t know how I would cope with that task, I was afraid that a situation might arise in which I wouldn’t be able to draw children’s attention. But in my case the opposite happened, so the negative thoughts remained only in my head. From day one, the children were my dream students, attentive and interested, just the way I wanted them to be. The time spent with them really passed very quickly. Instead of wasting energy with them, I returned home more energetic than when I left. Their smiles and positivity cannot leave anyone indifferent. But unfortunately, every beautiful story has its own end. I will never forget the day we had our last class, we were all really sad thaw it is the last time we see each other. While I was staying in Antalya, I often met some of my students even on the streets.

During my volunteering in Turkey, I also participated in trainings organized by the National Turkish Agency. The training in Izmir left the biggest impression on me. I heard about it by chance from my coordinator, so I thought why not to apply. While I was filling out the application – I saw that they have high criteria for the participants, but I still had hope that I would be one of the selected participants. Two weeks passed, I received the long-awaited e-mail that out of 270 candidates there was a place for only 30, and then I read the sentence: “Congratulations, you are a selected participant”. The feeling was really indescribable, I felt very special. The topic of the training was: “Young entrepreneurs”. I learned that if a young person has a business idea can implement it with the help of a European business exchange program – Erasmus for young entrepreneurs. During this week, there were different feelings and emotions. To gain more than 30 new friendships in two days is really wonderful, but, unfortunately, when the day came to say “goodbye” – there were also sad feelings, because it was clear to all of us that it is impossible in one place in one time we all meet together again. But still, our friendship will last forever and we know that a part of us will meet again somewhere, maybe when we least expect it.

My advice to all young people is to try to be a volunteer at least once in their lifetime, because the feeling is really amazing. I hope that I managed to describe in this text at least a small part of my feelings that I experienced during my volunteering in Turkey. Of course, I have described only the most striking moments and the most emotional feelings, because if I have to describe all my feelings – I can freely write a novel. The feelings experienced when being a volunteer cannot be easily described, but can only be experienced.

Magdalena Milenkovska

Magdalena Milenkovska
Efe Efeoglu