Hi everyone! We are Lucia from Slovakia, Salma from France and Lucia from Italy. We are the three lucky volunteers at Kiribil Sarea, spending eight months in Bilbao during 2021-2022, supporting Gozaldi, Aisibizia, Harribide Fundación, Ausartzen and Umeak Kalean.
It’s been three weeks since we’ve arrived in Bilbao, and we’ve managed to integrate to the city quite well. During our free time, we try to learn more about the culture and history of the Basque Country, but we’ve also started taking Spanish classes in order to enjoy the region even more. We’ve been able to use the different means at our disposition to learn more about the country such as the library, letting us work in a beautiful and quiet place. The different student associations such as Erasmus Student Network but also Happy Erasmus Bilbao were also extremely helpful when it comes to the discovery of the city and the region in general, but also to meet people from all over the world and exchange with the others about our experiences.
The local community has also been extremely warm and welcoming. They’ve been allowing us to practice the language and discover more about their culture.
The city has a lot to offer and especially gorgeous sites that we were able to see in our free time when wandering notably in the old neighbourhood. Bilbao is also close to the sea therefore it was a real pleasure to have the chance to go for a swim especially since not all of us live near the beach in our respective countries. It is also surrounded by mountains that we were able to climb during our hikes.
We are extremely grateful to be volunteering is such a unique city that offers the perfect balance between nature and modernity.
Salma Ibrahim – Volunteer with youth migrants
I’m Salma and I will be supporting the Harribide Fundazioa which goal is to promote the social inclusion of migrants through different ways, such as Spanish courses, but also outdoor activities gathering migrants and the local community to enable social relations. These means make it possible for migrants to feel more comfortable and included within the community, and therefore allowing them to project themselves as full and equal citizens.
This mission not only benefits the young migrants which have been facing discrimination for a long time, but it also benefits the volunteers, by allowing them to discover new cultures and traditions
My time with Harribide Fundazioa has been tremendously interesting, I’ve been making great encounters whether it is with the other volunteers or the beneficiaries of the project. I’ve also been learning a lot about Spanish and more especially the Basque Country’s legal system concerning migration. Overall, this experience has also been rewarding for me as part of the Harribide Fundación team as a volunteer.
Lucia Pace and Lucia Gazdurová – Volunteers with kids and teenegers
We are Lucia from Italy and Lucia from Slovakia, and our task includes the development of socio educational activities for children and young people. We believe that learning centres are useful because they can have fun, but they can also explore their own interests. The activities encourage collaboration, participation, inclusion and promote values such as tolerance, solidarity and respect. We take care of the school reinforcement, and we participate in different outdoor activities such as paddle surf and circus workshop in order to allow the kids to socialise and try new things.
It is an experience that allows young people to get in touch with different cultures, traditions, and at the same time enriches our cultural and personal background. We think that young people are the future, and we are happy to contribute to their growth.