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Volunteering in Latvia - Grow, Latvia!

Six months in Latvia

 It's been six months since I am a volunteer in Riga. This is a big term, but it has passed as quickly as if I only arrived from Ukraine yesterday. But at the same time - as if it was in the previous life. I am very grateful that in such a difficult situation, I was assisted by such a kind and professional person Daria Prybyl, my volunteer colleague and friend. Together with her, we arrived at such an unknown, but at the same time familiar, Riga. Fortunately, we helped by the director of the organization, the Latvian Youth Development Center - Alexander Post. He settled us into a large cozy apartment and helped to acclimate. We immediately enrolled in language courses and began to study the Latvian culture.



But the work of a volunteer is not only a cultural knowledge. Our main goal is to inform Latvian youth about the opportunities that Erasmus+ gives them. Our project consists of several goals. Firstly, with Daria, we conduct social media of our organization, where we providing the necessary information for young people in relation to volunteering and international trainings. Second, we distribute these opportunities through lectures at youth centers throughout Latvia.

We also deal with the dissemination of knowledge about Ukraine in Latvia. We have developed a presentation about our country, as well as an interactive quize. Confirming the fame of our country, we developed a karaoke on the famous song "Ty zh mene pidmanula", which we sing together with the Latvian youth. Our pearl is a kitchen, the taste of which we fill the Latvian hearts with Ukrainian culture.



Since volunteering is not just a job, but also learning, we started developing our own startup. Our idea was a box with Latvian "Latviesu kastīte" gifts. This gift can be ordered by any person who wants to feel the culture of Latvia.

I was able to improve the skills of my profession, namely the 3D modeler. Thanks to them, I developed the mascot of our organization - cat Muris. This fun kitty is the third volunteer of our organization and it appears in the photos of our events. Also, I'm developing a 3D cartoon based on the Riga legends and will distribute them through our YouTube channel.

These are quick conclusions about my six months in Latvia. We did a lot of work, but this is just the beginning since we have planned many activities for the summer. I am very grateful that I used this chance to go to another country to work as a volunteer at the Latvian Youth Development Center. This is an incredible experience, through which I learn a lot of new things and practice my skills to work. I thank Alexander Post and my mentor Daiga Ancane, who make my stay here a welcoming one. I especially thank "Stella", an organization that sent me to this project "Grow, Latvia!"

Kyrylo Berezhnov