I decided to choose Antalya for my volunteering because I wanted to live a different experience in my life. Turkey is known around the world for its delicious food, hospitality and wonderful tourism. Antalya is one of the most beautiful cities in Turkey, and after Istanbul, this is the most visited and sought-after destination.
I arrived at the end of May. Turkish hospitality could be seen already on the plane. An hour after arriving in Antalya, I already had new friends here of course they were the volunteers, who were here from different countries. The first few days I was really too busy meeting new friends, and here trust me you will meet people from all over the world. Antalya is a really attractive place for young people, but you can make sure of that only if you visit it.
Of course, wherever you go, you have expectations and reality, the same is the case with Antalya. The first thing that made a big impression on me is that I expected people here to speak very good English, since it is a tourist place, but Russian is spoken in many places. I expected that there would be no going out late at night, I thought it was dangerous, but quite the opposite, you can go out freely at any time, there are always people, both locals and tourists, and everywhere in the city you can see the security services, the city is really safe. Often one can think that Turks are only polite in tourist places, but that is not the case. Turks are really kind people, and when you say that you are a foreigner, they have even more respect for you.
After the first week, my activities also started. Actually, the more time I am here and work on my activities, the more interesting they become for me. First, my activities started in Lidosk office. When they told me what my activities would be here, I was really positively surprised. My task is to make Instagram posters for my organization, for me as an economist it means a kind of real work experience. Other activities I am involved in are related to children. It is about a visit to a youth center where I help children learn or improve their English through various games. Also, once a week we have the task of going to a Fishing center, a place full of different types of fish. Time goes by really fast there, sometimes we only deal with fish, but very often we talk about one of my favorite topics, which is ecology. We give different ideas about how we young people can strive to be more responsible for our environment and our planet. I would like our ideas to be soon a reality so that we can protect our planet from unwanted climate changes, which are becoming more and more actual.
During the weekend we don’t have any activities, so I can freely boast that during the weekend I don’t have time for myself. When I want to be alone, I do it during the week, after my activities are over. During the weekend we always organize parties or some kind of trip with the young people who live here. You are never alone here, there is always someone who will invite you to drink coffee, go to the beach or somewhere else, simply here we are all one big international family. In our free time, we have really many opportunities to get to know Turkish culture and Turkish traditions and to enjoy Turkish food.
Our Erasmus+ meetings organized by the Turkish National Agency are part of our project. My first such experience happened from July 26 to 29 in Diyarbakir. It is really a wonderful experience. There I managed to meet all the volunteers who are in the territory of the Republic of Turkey. Actually, I was a little disappointed that I didn’t meet another volunteer from Macedonia, I expected to meet at least one more Macedonian. But really Diyarbakır was a really wonderful experience for me. I managed to create new friendships again, I learned some new opportunities that Erasmus+ offers us, I was in a completely new place for me, I tried traditional food for that part, and I had the opportunity to meet local people, explore the city, experience new adventures and to discover myself even more deeply.
Every Erasmus+ experience changes me and leaves a deep impression on me, but I also feel that these experiences help me mature and see life in a different, more beautiful and positive way.
Sergey Arturo Addisc