As I mentioned in the previous article, the EVS project is not very popular in Iceland. However I found the exception: Sara Guðmundsdóttir, an Icelandic 22 year old woman who has spent several years linked to the world of volunteering. Sara is a mentor in Veraldarvinir (Worldwide Friends).
Marta. – Sara, how long have you been a volunteer at Worldwide Friends – Veraldarvinir?
Sara. – I started volunteering with Veraldarvinir in November 2011. The association organized a project called “Tierra bomba” in Colombia during one month, working with children and sports.
M. – Have you been EVS volunteer abroad?
S. – Yes, after project in Colombia I decided to make a long-term volunteering in Europe. My choice was to spend nine months in Poland teaching English at a school in Klodzko. Also in a project with children in a hotel consisting on playing games and trying to teach them things about different cultures.
M. – And now, are you still tied to the organization?
S. – Yes, currently I’m mentor for EVS volunteers coming to Iceland for volunteering. Veraldarvinir prefer that volunteers remain part of the organization when they finish their EVS.
M. – What is the job of the mentor?
S. – The mentor aims to create a “safety net” where volunteers can ask mentors if they need anything, we help their with the youthpass, or if they need or want to do something in Iceland, or simply if they need to talk with someone.
M. – What is your motivation to be local volunteer?
S. – It is a good way to keep in touch with the organization, with the people I’ve met and I can meet new people each time.
M. – And what was your motivation to be EVS?
S. – Travelling abroad, meet different countries, meet people and cultures …
M. – What has been your experience with volunteering?
S. – I learned a lot about myself. To be more independent, leader, and has given me the opportunity to learn what I want to do in my future. I know more about people and their countries and now I´m more open minded to everything.
M. – What’s your plan for your future?
S. – I want to start my own company, I’m starting a jewelry accessories store and everything related to the world of tattoo. And I want to travel around the world. It is never enough when it comes to traveling.
This is an example of which I spoke, Icelandic youth is changing, and Sara is an important pillar of communication with the rest. She is promoting the volunteer participation in Iceland. I hope that many Icelanders want to follow her example.