Volunteering in Brno – ‘Ahoj!’ To Brno, From Me

Přečtěte si článek od naší nové dobrovolnice Miny, která pochází z Makedonie a nyní působí v kanceláři Mladiinfo v Brně. Mina je studentkou jazyků, věnuje se dokonce studiu češtiny a české kultury. 

Leaving behind a pair of grandparents and an overly energetic dog, this new volunteer boldly sets out on an adventure. How does it feel to be volunteering in Brno?

Hello world!

Writing the first sentence, blog, the first of anything, often is the hardest part, right? So let me break the ice and simply introduce myself as I am. My name is Mina. I’m a language student from Macedonia, a little country sitting in the Balkans. I currently study Czech language and culture, but most importantly I’m volunteering in Brno for Mladiinfo CZ. Click here if you’re interested to learn about it more in Czech.

My first picture as an ESC volunteer in Brno.
Personal archive. Can’t believe I’ll work here!

Thanks to a fortunate scroll through Facebook, I found a call on Mladiinfo’s page looking for someone interested but with no previous experience in EVS. It was one day before the deadline, and I rushed to send in a CV. 

Volunteering in Brno 101

Being freshly introduced to the concept of international volunteering and European Solidarity Corps, most terms and processes are still foreign to me. It’s been around a week for me here. When I arrived first I had no idea what was waiting for me. I missed my train to Brno by a minute. I stood like a caveman outside in the cold for two hours before I figured out there was a room inside where all the people were waiting for their ride. When the train came it was already night, and I had no clue at which stop to exit. My first day abroad and I thought I was already lost. But then a nice Slovak man sat in my compartment. He told me when to go and helped me with the bags, the two of us communicating in a funny mix of Serbian-Czech. ‘Držím ti palce,’ he said, and I just smiled cluelessly.

But that will be one of the things I will be working on here in Brno. Trying to go through these six months and learning necessary life skills, like public speaking, managing events and workshops, and learning you CAN overcook pasta. You can also get lost and un-lost. All of these things scare me. But I trust this kind of motivating fear. Come at me, ugly cooking!

Hopes and goals

One of the things I love doing most is exploring wild nature, getting introduced to different cultures, and making funny little drawings. Hopefully my experiences with EVS in Czech will mirror this – checking out Špilberk, Lednice, running through this city with the ease of a native, meeting new people, getting better at Czech, and contributing as much as I can in a creative environment. So many doors are open in front of me now, so thanks Mladiinfo CZ!

drawing of me as a volunteer

– Mina ♥