Hello! My name is Klavs, I come from Riga, Latvia and I'm going to spend the next 9 (10, but I'm almost a month in) months in Ostrava for voluntary work. I enjoy listening to music, playing different sports (football, basketball are my favourites), watching films and just expanding my knowledge. I started this blog so people (mostly my friends) could read and follow up on my experience while participating in a voluntary project.
Before I started participating in a voluntary project in Ostrava, Czech Republic, I had mixed emotions about doing all that - leaving my friends and family behind for 10 months wasn't a part of my plan this year but I took advantage if this situation and came over here in September 21, 2020. First two weeks went by quickly, I got to know new people who are involved in voluntary work with me, sorted everything regarding basic needs (travel card etc) and started working in Don Bosco Salesian youth Centre in Ostrava. It was quite a cultural shock for me at first because I have to work with kids but they don't speak English and I don't know a word in Czech (I'm working on it though) but it has been a great experience so far. I made friends with one of my colleagues who invited me to play some football, so I started playing with his team.
As of now the Coronavirus has struck the Czechs heavy, and it includes me as well. The youth centre has been closed for two weeks now, football practices have been cancelled until further notice - it just feels like March again.
Emotionally it's not as tough as it was in March because I lost quite a lot during the first spree of the pandemic, but now it's just exhausting to see public places being closed down, no fun activities allowed anywhere, it's just me, my roommate and random things to do just to pass time. There hasn't been a lot going on project-wise but my hopes are high as everything should be back abd running in a few weeks. Hopefully I won't lose my mind before I get back to working with kids because I actually enjoy my work over here - it's not too hard but it definitely isn't easy. The language barrier is giving me a proper challenge and I know it's gonn be much essier when I get the hang of Czech language.
In general, this has been an eye opening month for me - I kinda miss my family and friends, spending time with my little brothers, having fun with my friends, having different trips with them and stuff like that. Some of them keep telling me to come back but I am determined to stay here no matter what (of course, I'd enjoy a few weeks in Latvia right now but it's not the reason why I came here in the first place). Besides family and friends I really miss my teammates from my amateur basketball team - the season just started and it feels really sad to see them play without me, but I keep in touch with them quite often and it helps me get through a rough and rainy day.
I would like to add a song to each blog entry to share with the world - it usually will showcase my current emotions or feelings but this time it's just a great song I found a few days back and I can't stop listening to it.
Alexa, play Yessirski by Doe Boy.