Volunteer’s money

One of the main things I was worried about before starting my EVS in Italy was whether the money I’m going to receive from the project is going to be sufficient. ‘Will I have to save on food?’, ‘Will I be able to buy meat only from time to time?’, ‘Will there be any chance of travelling?’ — those were some of the questions I was asking myself.

Eventually I also found some people online, ex-volunteers who did their EVS in Italy. I was mainly looking for Poles, cause in this way the information they would provide would be more adequate for me. One of the people I contacted told me, that I would probably have to save some money and be careful with it, that I won’t probably be able to eat meat every day (laugh all you want, but for a Polish person, meat is essential). Fortunately it’s not THAT important for me to eat meat each day for lunch (we don’t have evening dinner in Poland).

Anyway, to keep it short: a lot depends on your own needs, because I for example am not a person that goes out so much, so I don’t spend money on drinks, eating out etc. That makes it easier for me to save for other things and small joys, like nicer food from time to time. Also, you have to remember that not every volunteer receives the same amount of money each month. First of all it depends on the country you do your EVS in and then you have to also remember that different organisations handle money differently. Some will provide you accomodation that is already paid for, some will give you money and make you manage it yourself. Some will give you the full amount of money for the month, some will give you less, because for example you’re having lunches and dinners at your organisation every day (happens mostly when you work in retirement homes, refugee houses and so on).

If you want to know more about the amounts of money for each country you can do an EVS in, you will find it in the official Erasmus+ guide (available in various languages). And if you have more specific questions about how it really is for a volunteer in Italy (or in Bologna, more specific), you can write me in the comments or contact me via the Facebook page.

Blogging again!

“Here I go again on my own!”

I wish I could sing that for real, though… Not that it’s not true, but because I can’t actually sing so well. Anyways, here I am again in the blogosphere, with another project, Un sentiero alberato. It’s going to be an EVS diary most of the time. I guess, you never know with these things.

EVS — or to make it more clear — European Voluntary Service is yet another poster child of the European Union: designed to provide the so-called European youth a brighter future and better chances for getting a job. I’m not going to describe all the details here, you can find everything you want to know on the official website of Erasmus+. To cut the long story short: you pick a place where you want to work and the organisation you want to work for, you apply, they take you and you have the time of your life. Yeah, I know, a dream come true.

Well, for me it sort of is, or will be, since I haven’t started it yet. My project is going to take place in Bologna, Italy. So: sun, food, and crooked towers. I will work with Associazione Culturale Oltre…, which is my hosting organisation, and Betty & Books, which is the coordinating organisation. Both of those are deeply connected with the cultural life of Bologna, they organize various festivals and cultural events, engage people of the city and promote the folklore of Emilia-Romagna. I am a graphic designer and editor with a couple of years of experience, so I will definitely help them with this stuff, but I’m also ready to take up new challenges and maybe do things I’ve never done before, because this is mostly what EVS should be about: learning and gaining experience.

Now, it’s hard to determine what you’ll be able to read about on this blog. Might be some weird comments about the Italian way of life, things that shocked me, things I love about the country/city/people. Maybe you’ll see some photos, maybe I’ll share a song I heard on the radio. Maybe there will also be some videos with me not being able to find a way in all those claustrophobic Italian streets that for me still look all the same. Maybe I’ll say a couple of things about the people I meet and maybe afterwards they’ll chase me through the mentioned streets. But, in general, I’ll try to keep it simple and entertaining, so that you can read it with your morning coffee or afternoon snack. I hope you won’t get bored.

Just for your information: I have blogged from abroad before, when I was in Finland doing my Erasmus there. You can check it out here if you want.

See you next time!