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We have a new EVS; Ana’s First Impression September 28, 2012

Posted by usbngo in Older Posts.

My name is Ana Maia, from Porto, Portugal. I am now in U.S.B. for almost 2 weeks. I have graduated in Media and I devote all my efforts to photography.

I would like to start by explaining my motivation for coming for EVS in Greece. Portugal is currently a country in deep economical, social and political crisis. The acceptance of IMF’s rescue plan has damaged Portugal in an unprecedented way. Greece is the epicenter of the crisis that is affecting my country, the Greek were the first victims of this economic terroristic maneuver, therefore Portuguese are very sympathetic with the Greek.

I, as a photographer, was very interested in the scenario I would probably find in Greece, so I started searching for an organization that worked in Media, so I could combine my volunteer work with the organization’s interests as well. I have written to several organizations, and U.S.B. was on my list, and actually one of the most interesting, due to their connection with Balkan countries and their focus on cooperation with them. I was fortunate that someone from Portugal had quit her EVS vacancy in U.S.B., because I am now filling it. I contacted U.S.B. on the 21st of June, and on the 15th of September I was happily landing in Thessaloniki.

As soon as I arrived, I had an interview for “Thess EVS”, a documentary that U.S.B. is filming about Youth in Action programme. I hadn’t slept all night – I started travelling at 10pm of the 15th and landed at 8am of the 16th – and it was surprising to have people filming my arrival.

I was very well received by Aris and Olympia at the U.S.B. headquarters. They are both very professional and attentive to everybody’s needs.

I spent a good week just adapting and performing simple tasks, while trying to establish myself comfortably at home. I was pleased to meet the other volunteers and to go out with them for drinks. The apartment where I live is very nice. The view from it is incredible and the city is very beautiful – even though I still haven’t had time to know more than 10% of it.

My expectations for this period of 9 months in Thessaloniki are quite high. I expect to develop interesting projects, especially in the field of photography, I expect to make new friends, to meet also local people, I expect to be able to communicate in Greek, I expect to develop my own personal projects and to be strong enough to endure Thessaloniki’s famous severe winter. I would very much like to be able to write a project for European Youth Foundation, involving photography and the Balkan countries that surround Greece. Mostly, I want to be active all the time and engaged with projects I can relate with.

Thanks for reading!




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