I am Therese and currently doing an internship at the Open Space Foundation. I am 21 years old and born in Germany.
Let me tell you a little bit about my Bulgarian journey, it started back in September 2019 in Varna where I did my first volunteering project with the Organization “Balkan Kids” focusing mostly on social work with children and adults with disabilities. In these six months I learned a lot about not only Bulgaria, but also myself.
I decided to stay longer and wanted to move to Sofia with the idea of another, different experience. At this point I had fallen in love with this beautiful country as well as my Boyfriend through whom I first got introduced to Open Space Foundation and Pepa, our lovely boss, mentor and friend. So while already living in Sofia and working at the Goethe-Institute, the German culture institute, I grew close to the people and volunteers of Open Space Foundation, so close that I immediately said yes when Pepa told me about a free spot as an intern. Now I’m working with OSF since March of this year and my biggest task yet is the correspondence with and selection of the new applicants for the upcoming projects: short-term volunteering project this summer in Veliki Preslav, new youth exchanges and art-residencies in Bulgaria.
Volunteering: as for any other volunteering project, we are searching for young people with open minds and willing to live new adventures and experiences. The selection is happening through interviews held by me, and other team members in the organziation. But don’t worry, we are basically just having a conversation with you to get to know each other and get an idea of what you expect from the project as well as our expectations towards you. Just be yourself! Which is very important since doing a voluntary service really teaches you a lot about yourself and others, sometimes you might be in difficult situations, be it the language barrier, differences with other volunteers or personal problems. I personally feel like any volunteering project lets you learn at least a couple of lessons for life and helps the personal as well as professional growth. So if you are thinking of going abroad and widening your horizon a short-term project might be just the thing for you. See it as an experiment that only lasts for a little over a month and in the end you gained a lot of first-hand experience, frenships and training to move forward.
If you are interested in archaeological excavations or working with local people check out our short-term project in Veliki Preslav, Bulgaria: https://www.openspacebg.com/short-term-in-preslav-bg/
In your process of applying, I will be the first person to be in contact with you, so please don’t hesitate to ask me any questions related to volunteering projects.
The project happen with financial support of the program “European Solidarity Corps” of European Union.