From Portugal to Slovenia

From Portugal to Slovenia

My name is Andreia and I’ve been an international volunteer at the Mladinski center Zagorje since november. I’m from Portugal and, for a lot of years, traveling was not one of my main plans. However, finishing college, I did a post graduation in Digital Marketing and then started thinking about what were my aspirations in life. I didn’t want to just go to some regular company and make social media posts about something that doesn’t really captivate me. I was feeling an emptiness that could only be filled if I would choose to go on some new adventure, so I started looking for international volunteering projects and found the Mladinski center Zagorje ob Savi.

I have to admit that I didn’t think about Slovenia as much before but I’m getting more and more surprised each day. Zagorje is pretty similar to my hometown so I don’t feel that much of a struggle to fit in here. I’m really amazed by all the nature and hoping to enjoy even more snow during winter, as it’s not something I see that regularly in Portugal. Two months after I’ve arrived here, I’m already feeling at home so the next step is learning the language. I will start with the Slovenian classes so I’m gonna be able to say more than just “Dan” to everyone in the street. Being in a country where people speak a different language than yours has been an interesting way of practicing my English but, at the same time, finding new ways of communicating. Shopping was one of my first big battles but it is not anymore because the people there already recognize me the minute I enter the store and will help me with whatever I need. I feel already welcomed by everyone. I’ve made some friends from Zagorje and met some more volunteers from all over Europe.

During the next few days, I’ll start some new activities with the primary school kids and also with the young people of Zagorje, from Portuguese classes to upcycling clothes workshops. For the first weeks of the project I was living by myself, but now a Spanish roommate arrived to brighten my days even more and live this adventure with me. We prepared a welcome party in the Daily Center that ended up being a late late surprise birthday party for both of us with a perfect mix of Spanish snacks and international Karaoke. I can’t wait to see what the next months are going to bring us but I can already say that this experience has already been unforgettable.



Projekti prostovoljstva v okviru Evropske solidarnostne enote mladim nudijo priložnosti za prostovoljsko delo. Odgovarjati morajo na pomembne potrebe družbe, prispevati h krepitvi skupnosti in ob tem prostovoljcem omogočati, da pridobivajo uporabne izkušnje, veščine in kompetence za svoj osebni, izobraževalni, socialni, državljanski in profesionalni razvoj, s čimer se izboljšuje njihova zaposljivost.

Več o programu Evropske solidarnostne enote (slo. ESE, ang. ESC, bivši EVS) si lahko preberete na povezavi: