“To sum it up… I’m speechless”

Hidden in the Velebit mountain range, the Kuterevo Bear Refuge (Croatia) welcomed us – a group of 20 volunteers coming from different countries (Croatia, Serbia, Kosovo, Greece, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Germany and France) – for the Kuterevo Camp Coordinator Training. Through this training, our awesome trainers Đurđica Valadžija and Nevena Sićević prepared us to coordinate international…

“Balkan Steps” – Alessandra story

In the last weeks we had the chance to have a glance at the hardness of the reality that the refugees here are forced to face every day and to try to understand it better. All of them keep trying the so called “Game”, a nice name to describe the never ending attempts at crossing…

“Balkan Steps” – Silvia story

“Today we can finally breathe!”, I thought, maybe too naively, this morning. The heat, until yesterday nearly unbearable, has decreased considerably, gifting us with a bit of relief. Problems, however, as I too soon discovered, have not stopped yet: the burning sun has been replaced by heavy rain and, with it, a good measure of…

Workcamps in Kosovo – a summer opportunity you cannot miss…

In July and August, GAIA, the SCI branch in Kosovo, is offering three diverse but extremely compelling workcamps. There is something for everybody: If you want to experience traditional lifestyle, escape from civilization, (no internet, electricity or running water) and explore different views on life, the universe and religion than you should join the monks…

Borders separate, nature unites

GAIA Kosovo has completed the project focused on youth and volunteering programs for nature conservation in rural areas called ‘Youth for nature, volunteering and inclusion’ supported by the Erasmus+ programme of the EU. The project included 3 international activities which took place in Kosovo. A training course on qualitative and strategic programs for youth in…

My EVS in Albania: helping instill values

The world faces a huge, often seemingly insurmountable range of problems. Whether these be economic, social or otherwise, people with the fewest resources and opportunities always bear the brunt of their impact. Values such as solidarity, interculturalism and active citizenship are of paramount importance in solving these issues, building peace, prosperity and making the future…

Experience of a camp coordinator

The Bear the Peace camp was held in the Kuterevo bear refuge, where every year there is a large number of volunteers from all over the world, most of which subscribe to the same values and are interested in peace/building. There were 10 volunteers, from different countries – Spain, France, Czech Republic, Taiwan, Croatia ……

Balkan Myth Busters

During ten days in March, a group of 28 youngsters from Kosovo, Serbia, Macedonia, Greece, Bulgaria and Germany has gathered in Velika Hoca, Kosovo for a Youth Exchange that is part of the 2 years long Balkan Myth Busters project coordinated by VCV Serbia and GAIA Kosovo supported by Erasmus+. The project is aiming to…

Isolated, but in Europe – why volunteers are needed in Kosovo

Geographically, Kosovo is part of Europe, but politically there are many obstacles to feel like that. More than half of Kosovo’s populations are young people who are enthusiastic and interested to learn more, to explore other cultures, to volunteer abroad and to feel free, but visa regime is making it very complicated. Visa regime is…

EVS story from Macedonia – part 2

Before telling you some experiences during my EVS in Macedonia, I would like to thank Planete Volontaire and CID for the opportunity to realize this volunteering, highly recommended experience! Discovering a new country and new cultures… it is not always easy. Have you ever heard about cultural shock? At first you think, what am I…

EVS story from Macedonia

Three months ago, when I arrived to Kumanovo, I did not know much about the country, let alone the city, I had just moved in. Having finished my Masters degree in International Migrations and Ethnic Relations and having worked in a transit-center in Sweden, I was keen on seeing how the refugee-situation looked like in…

#IStandWithRefugees

Greece, September- December 2016 My time in Greece began at City Plaza, a squat hotel in downtown Athens that was occupied by four hundred refugees, as well as Greek and International solidarity. This project was unique in how it functioned. It was more than just accommodation. Residents – both refugees and solidaritarians alike contributed to…