Anja, 23, Montenegro
My experience of Merseyside Expanding Horizons
What made you apply to a European Voluntary Service (EVS) project?
At the end of my studies, I was granted a scholarship for a 2 month internship with MEH. I completed my 2 month internship and fell in love both with people and city of Liverpool. After that, I have discovered that MEH is involved in European Solidarity Corps programmes and decided to come back to Liverpool for another 9 months.
What is your degree and what encouraged you to candidate to MEH? Why did you choose MEH?
I have a Bachelors Degree in Economics at The University of Donja Gorica, and a Masters Degree in European Studies at the University of Parma. I wanted to broaden my experiences abroad after my first one in Italy and also to improve my personal, linguistic and social skills.
I choose MEH because the position offered suited my interests and it was connected to my studies. I wanted to learn more about European projects and work with international partners.
MEH works in an international context with different employees around the world: how do you find yourself in this context?
For me it was very exciting. I love people, and I love hearing their stories.
Which are the differences that you noticed most between England culture and your home country?
I noticed that English people are very direct, the food culture is not as strong as from my home country. For example, in my home country we like to eat lunch and dinner very slowly and it is considered as a social thing. When in England, a lot of times they eat their lunch at the desk while working. I have found it strange that everyone was calling me "love", but later on, I really liked it. Scouse people are truly lovely and because of the people after sometime Liverpool started feeling like home.
What is the thing you are missing most about your home country?
The sun and my family and friends.
What is the thing you like most and the thing you would like to change about Liverpool?
The thing I love the most about Liverpool is the people. I have travelled a lot around Europe, but I’ve never met so many friendly and nice people. Their hospitality is truly incredible. The only thing I would change about Liverpool is the weather haha, and I would change the quality of food.
Describe MEH in 3 words
Intercultural, inclusive, real
Do you think that your experience in MEH has changed something in your being? (Professional and unprofessional point of view)
MEH has definitely changed me. On a professional level, I have learnt a lot. The team have been great and very encouraging. There are no limits in the knowledge that can be gained from them.
On a personal level, it has also changed me. I have opened up my horizons, and have met some truly lovely people that I hope I will remain in contact for the rest of my life.
Do you think that your experience in MEH will be useful in a future?
Absolutely. I've gained a lot of knowledge, but more significantly, I've had the opportunity to try out many working styles, which has helped me create my own. I also hope I was useful to MEH :)