It was a week full of lovely sunshine when we stayed in Hotel Flagman close to the seaside of Varna. After an exhausting bus ride of eight hours we arrived in the hotel which belongs to the Bulgarian government. It provided a private bedroom for everybody, a lot of food and a great view on the blue waves of the cold October Sea.
About 70 volunteers from all over Bulgaria attended the training program which mainly focused on the Bulgarian culture, issues to deal with as a volunteer and EVS program. The wide range of different nationalities led to a creative atmosphere, people were sharing a lot of great ideas, sometimes presented in humorous way. Especially the parties in the evening were shaped of multiculturalism: Latvian pop music, Spanish dances and German party games enriched the program and made it an interesting intercultural experience for everyone. Everybody was free to add program spontaneously, there was space and time for everybody to implement something.
We learned about general practices in EVS, the mentor, the supervisor and roles and responsibilities of our host organization. The trainers explained us how to create a Youthpass and Svetlo from the National Agency answered questions about our health insurance.
Games like “Save the egg” trained our team work skills and we got to know the other volunteers better. Between the intensive sessions there were games involving a lot of movement to keep us concentrated and balanced. Balancing on the chairs and getting in order of birthdate was also fun.
We visited Varna for a task called “Varna Mission”, for this we had to create a small campaign to celebrate the 20th birthday of EVS in 2016. Most of the groups came up with funny ideas to get in touch with the citizens of Varna to describe them the advantages of participating in EVS.
We didn’t have much free time because the program was packed but at least we had the chance to get a small impression of Varna and to swim in the sea (or in the pool for those who prefer).
In Varna there was the possibility to make a lot of friends and we are happy to have a network to keep in touch and to visit each other. Now we have a bed and a city guide in nearly every Bulgarian city 🙂
Big thank you for our amazing trainers, they were friendly, funny, relaxed and well informed. I can’t imagine better ones. I am looking forward for the mid-term training.
Author: Philipp Zimmerman