My name is Ana and i'm 27 years old.
On the 31st of January 2014 my journey began.
But first let me tell you the story about how this came to be, how I managed to find the application to be able to go on this adventure.
It begins in late September while I was looking for a job. I was on this quest to try to find employment in my own country, which is Portugal. As many of you might have heard it's not an easy task. I sent a lot of curriculum's and motivation letters, so many that i don't remember all the places/companies that have received those files containing information about my life and aspirations. I was on the employment section of one of the radio networks in my country when I saw an application for an EVS in United Kingdom. At that time I didn't know anything about EVS, what it was or what was their purpose or objectives. I just saw an advert that caught my attention. From there I was redirected to the EVS website, where I learned a little bit more and for those of you who don't know, it stands for European Voluntary Service. You can find more information in www.europeanvoluntaryservice.org, or in www.sve.proatlantico.com.
Among the projects that I applied there was one that really caught my attention. The one that I would be able to put my knowledge more effectively but also would let me do something that is totally different from what I have ever done. This project was in Romania, in the city Ramnicu Vâlcea, with the duration of one year and it would be directed to the Roma communities, which are the gypsies. The host organization was looking for someone with social communication knowledge to help implement a media campaign to create awareness to the problems of the Roma communities.
The Roma communities usually keep to themselves and try to take their kids out of school as soon as possible. As such, the host organization is trying to change the mentalities so that the children can be kept in school.
I applied for this project and that changed everything. As you can probably tell I got the position. To get I passed by all requirements that you would probably pass for a normal job, so I sent my CV and motivation letter, apparently they liked it and contacted me to arrange a Skype interview. Again they liked what they heard and after that sent me the confirmation that I was selected.
It was kinda of a shock to have this confirmation. And only then I realized that my life would change completely. I would spend a year outside of my country without my friends and family and I would end up losing one very important person. It was a difficult process to accept that I would be in this alone and that I would be with complete strangers while in Romania. From October to January everything was done in order for me to prepare for this journey. During the time of waiting I was working at two different stores, Decathlon and Tezenis, both in Leiria, my city. These three moths were very stressing and hard. I was working a lot and ended up hurting a person that I really didn't want to hurt. But still I had to move on, this was something that I needed to do, both for my self and for my future.
And so on the 31st of January, after many heartfelt goodbyes, some very difficult, I was at the Lisbon airport to start my adventure.
More on the way.