Hello everyone, my name is Maria and I would like to present you the volunteering project in which I am currently taking part.
First of all, the city in which I am living is Leipzig, a diverse and international city of Estern Germany. I started my project last september, and I am sharing a flat with six other volunteers. We all are coming from different countries and during all this months we got to know each other and establish a super cool atmosphere!
Aside my living situation, my volunteering is taking place in “Offener Freizeittreff Rabet”, a youth club situated in Eissenbahnstraße. This concept of youth club allows kids and teenegers to have a safe space where socialising, getting to know new people, playing games, learning… Kids usually come and play games such as billiard, kickers, table tennis, cards, in … We also count with two different spaces: in the small one kids from 7 years old until 13 meet there and play together either boarding games, kickers, xbox, playstation…
The other part of the club is for the older ones, where people from 13 years old until around 23 come and play Play Station or table tennis as well. During holidays in the school we usually organise different things, such as Table Tennis or Mario Kart tournaments, baking, a film project, music workshops… Currently we are developing a new activity for them, in which a Kickboxing trainer comes every Friday to teach and show them boxing. Some months ago we also counted with self defense training.
Apart from that, we have different workshops and activities that take place during the week. For example, Thursday is Nudelntag, on mondays we offer “Lese mit Ecke”, we also help kids with homework (Nachhilfe)… Now that the good weather seems coming, we are organising Barbecues and other activities to do outdoor. We also count with a beach volleyball field, football, basketball, work out facilities… So with all of this the kids have the chance to spend a good time and learn from others.
There is also another aspect that I want to share with you: the background of the kids. The majority of the people that come to OFT Rabet are either immigrants or refugees, which provides an international and intercultural space in which many languages and different points of view are together. Some of the countries where the kids come from are mainly Syria, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Turkey, Tunisia, among others. Since the first day I got included with all of them in all their different games and activities. They all helped me to understand the language as far as now I am able to speak german more fluently.
Additionally, the relationship with my coworkers has been one of the highlights from the beginning. The three of them treated me like another family member, they have been taking care of me and showing me different tips for living in the city and country!
To sum up, I could not have asked for a better place to work, for a better city to live in or for a better experience to live right now. This year is bringing a lot of challenges but also a lot of good moments a people to mi life!