Hey! I am Lya, Spanish volunteer at the ‘Youth House’ in Ventspils, Latvia. Thi whole journey started for me in September of 2018. I am twenty years old, and I was studying for Radiologist technician in Madrid, I was in the second year already starting my internship when I realized that was not for me, so I quit.
I have always wanted to live in a foreign country while studying or working, and this opportunity was just what I was searching for. I came for almost eight months (I still have three months left, thanks God;)) to Latvia to volunteer in the Youth House from here, to do worshops and projects for youngsters from here and also to teach Spanish, that I realize I really enjoy it and I am kinda good at it. It is the thing I enjoy the most doing at work, teaching my language to Latvian people, I have two groups, begginers and advanced.
I remember when they accepted me for the project, they told me by facetime and when I hanged up I thougt, okay, where is Latvia? Hahahaha. I would never though of coming here and that I had such an extraordinary experience, that I was going to meet really reallly nice and true people who were always there for me and that for sure I would never foget.
Talking about the country for people probably interested in coming here. I just can say that it won´t disapoint you, It is impressive the amount of virgin forests that they have all around. I remember the very first thing that called my attention was the night I arrived in Riga from the airport. We went by car from Riga to Ventspils (about two hours by car) the only two things that we could see were just forests and the shiniest stars I have ever seen. How can just be forest for two hours and nothing else????? Where can you find that?????!!!!!!
I would repeat this experience 100% if I would have the opportunity, or to do something similar. I have learnt so much about how to develop projects and most importantly about myself, I have seen that I can be independent, I have clearer ideas of what I want and what I like and what I want to do.
We have had the opportunity to do really cool projects like Escape Rooms, Christmas workshop (my favourite), air-freshener workshop, we had a really tasty one hahahaha, some Italian volunteers came to prepare real pizza and tiramisu… and also in the children’s library we have done some projects for the smallest ones…
My dutties here are making workshop for youngsters, sometimes also with help from local youngsters and Teaching Spanish twice a week.
I did my cultural evening here in the Youth house, it was fun and the funniest things that happened was that a Spanish guy came and he lived in my Street!!! How crazy is that??
About the language, omg! It is really difficult but really cool to learn it at the same time!! I am very interested in it, it is so different for my language or English!! But I have the best teacher, Baiba!!!!
I hope this can be useful for possible future volunteers that are thinking on joining this adventure.
I also have a mentor, a friend, Arta she halps me with every doubt that I may have and also we have a great time together, she showed me her town, Jūrmala. She came with me to the on-arrival training where we met new volunteers which also you make really good relationship with and keep the contact so in a future you can visit them or they can come and visit you in your city, and also you can do projects together in your towns. Now I will have my mid-term training where I will meet more Spanish volunteers!!
Volunteering gives you the opportunity to live really cool experiences in the field that you want. In my case, I have always felt in consideration with my colleges, they always wanted to listen to my ideas and made me feel really comfortable.
That is all from me, I hope you liked it and maybe you are considerating doing something like this, if that is the situation I wish you the best luck with it and I hope (and sure) that it will be awesome for you!!!