Cristina in Vigo, spring 2017


…And here I am in Portugal.

15 Jun , 2017  

Cristina arrived in September, from Romania, to do her EVS coordinated by Agora Aveiro, in Maternura.

Almost 9 months have passed and so we asked her to write a short resume of her Portuguese life. We are sharing it with you here:

“…And here I am in Portugal, Aveiro, 8 months later after my arrival in September. It has passed so little but at the same time so much. I barely remember how was it at the beginning, though I remember the overwhelming feelings of happiness, excitement, wondering what this EVS project is going to bring me. Well… it brought everything, all sort of emotions, from sadness to euforical states of mind. So many things happened so far, and so many is yet to happen. So, let me start from the beginning. My voluntary project consists of «working» with children in a kindergarten. At first I was putting so much stress on it, so many expectations, and as we all know the higher the expectations are, the more disappointment it brings. So, after a while I started to act and think in a more flexible manner, more globally, until i realized that my EVS does not stick only to my technical part, which is Maternura, it is much more than that. Actually, at a certain moment i realized that actually it is more outside the Maternura doors than inside. And it was there that I´ve started to learn, to learn about social interactions, learn about the Portuguese culture (that i am in love with), learning to organize events, to manage conflictual situations (or how to avoid them ), to administrate my little monthly budget, to walk slowly on the street instead of runing all the time, and finally to enjoy every single sunny or rainy day that life brings.
Somehow, i found myself thinking that i am so lucky with the people that suround me here. Some of them are super inspiring, others became my family, there were also passing by-ers that left some deep footprints in my soul, some of them are still acquaintances that are there always when i feel the need to be among people, The children that i work with – a special part of my project, and a special place in my heart. At the beginning I had the idea that i am the one who has to teach them, in the end it turns out to be that they are the ones to teach me. These little human beings have so many things to teach us «the adults», to be ourselves for instance, or to be honest and free, to sing and dance whenever we feel like, to choose what we love to do, and then love what we have chosen (I know, it sounds cliché, but it’s really like that), and of course, they teach how to love unconditionally. My favourite part is when they come to us out of the blue and give kisses (even if they are dirty as hell), it doesn’t matter anymore that they have left some «ranho» on our cheecks, or a bunch of mud on our T-shirts, it feels so right to give a hug and make this exchange of affection.
Moreover, during all this time, i’ve been traveling a lot within Portugal and outside Portugal as well. This country doesn’t stop surprising me with it’s nature,monuments, cities, people, events. Every place i’ve been to, is unique. I’ve done some classes of capoeira as well, for 3 months i’m doing rock climbing, I went to theatre (portuguese play), visited museums, swam in the Atlantic Ocean, these are things that i’ve done for the first time in my life. The emotions and experience i’ve got are uncomparable, unique in all the aspects.
Of course there were moments of sorrow, homesick, nostalgy. There were times when I wanted to give up on all this «once in a lifetime » project, I felt that this is not bringing me anywhere (but I was wrong, fortunately). Most of the time I miss my family and friends from my country, Moldova, and it feels like I am loosing something inside (the connection, maybe), but all in all… everything I am experiencing here is so… worth it.”

Association that promotes active citizenship.