Tere! Olá! Hello!
I’m João, the new volunteer from the European Solidarity Corps programme. I’m 20 and from Portugal.
I’ll be staying in Tipu Nature School for the next couple of months until December, so I’m very excited about all the possible things I’ll get to experience, and judging by the first week, there will be a lot of variety! :)
Back in Portugal, I wasn’t too sure of what to do on the next stage of my life regarding my studies or work. University was an option, but then again, there are so many degrees to choose from, and I just couldn’t make a decision. Then it came to my mind that I wanted a big change in my life, a completely different environment than the one I was used to. A place where I could do and explore different things than the ones I had tried back in school and in my home country, out of my comfort zone.
I ended up finding out about the European Solidarity Corps, the EU programme for volunteering abroad and decided to give it a try. After a couple of months, here I am in Estonia!
I used to live in one of the largest cities in Portugal, Setúbal. Not very far from Lisbon, near the sea with a lot of sunny days all year long. Quite a big contrast to the place I am now, with much fewer people, houses, cars, and completely different weather.
So I think I have achieved my goal of moving to a very different environment, which I’m very happy about! We’re surrounded by nature, a very peaceful place to be.
In the first days here I got to experience a bunch of things, from working with wood (cutting tree branches for fire), building a platform for tents, collecting some hay, feeding all the animals (the goats just had babies, and they’re very cute!), exploring the trails and nature on a hike, a tour of the nearby town of Viljandi, checking out some lakes... A lot!
And of course, all the things in the house too, a big change for me since it’s my first time living alone for such a period of time.
I feel like I’m learning new things and developing my skills every day, from using all the tools for building things, to making fire, and even how to cook better, all with the great help of the other two volunteers from Germany that were already here, Nis and Felix, which have been very supportive, teaching and showing me how things work around here!
I’ve been enjoying this change in my life and still have a lot to learn and do!
Can’t wait for the next weeks and all the fun experiences ahead! :D