My name is Vladimir. I’m a 31 years old volunteer from Russia, from city called Kirov which is located 1737 km from Tallinn. My profession is journalism, but I have never ever worked as a journalist. I was working as a photographer and also I was working at NGO (non-govermental organization) for 10 years with young people who had disabilities. And at this point I decided it was time to change something in my life.
I explored some opportunities and decided to take part in EVS (European voluntary program) by Erasmus+. This program gives young people a chance to live and work as a volunteer abroad and also covers all expenses.
So I took a decision to change my work and to try to live and work abroad. At first I needed to choose the country and the project. It was a bit complicated, because there was a lot of opportunities in that program. I decided to go to big city, not to a village. I wanted to try something new so I didn’t consider projects which worked with people who have disabilities. I didn’t want to work with eldery as well.
I found a project in Spain, but it was about working with migrants and it wasn’t something I wanted to do also. The next project that I liked was in Estonia. The project was about working at the youth centre with children and youngsters from 7 to 26. There were a lot of things to do there and I could share my skills and experiences. Also I found many pluses in living in Estonia: it was close to Russia and I could go to Saint-Petersburg if I needed it, there were a lot of russian-speaking citizens there – it might help me because my English wasn’t very well. From here, my choice was done. I had a skype-interview with head of PTNK (Põhja-Tallinna Youth Center) and after some time I received the letter with my acceptation.
Hooray!! I’m going to Estonia for 11 months as an EVS volunteer. And now I have been here for 6 months. I teach children how to play the drums, sometimes run photography packets, do the wall-climbing lessons, play billiards and board games with them. I’m going to organize active game club where children can run and play some active and fun games.
Also now I’m thinking about organizing my own small project in the spring. I don’t know what it will be exactly, maybe it will be some kind of summer trip or something like that. Will see.
I enjoy my work and staying in Tallinn very much. EVS gives the opportunity to live and work abroad like a local but not like a tourist and also to do some positive changes for locals. I extremely recommend it!
Vladimir is a EVS voulnteer in Põhja-Tallinna Youth Center from september 2018 – august 2019!