My name is Mitzi, I am 21 years old and I volunteered at the VIA VZW Project in Meihof Asylum Centre in Lint, a small village in the province of Antwerp (Belgium), where there are around 160 refugees, of which about 25 children and 18 unaccompanied minors.
Really working in the center with so many children becomes a complicated task, starting with language and culture. Life is difficult in the center – there are fights, screams, dislikes, etc. But that is part of your work: “to improve the environment a bit” or at least bring a little distraction to the people who reside there.
Being there makes you value much more what you have and makes you realize that there are people with problems much bigger than yours, that there are children separated from their parents, there are people away from their family and there are families that had to leave everything to to be there and still you see them smiling. You become one more child when playing with them and you realize that nothing really is as worthwhile as those moments.
I can say that it is the best experience of my life!
Written by Mitzi de Jesús Conejo Luna (Mexico). Photos by VIA VZW.