European Voluntary Service (EVS) is a great way to get valuable working experience abroad. Merseyside Expanding Horizons offers opportunities for people to participate in EVS, by sending and hosting volunteers.
This article is part of the series, where we share the stories of these brave volunteers and interns, who have moved to Liverpool from other countries. Cinzia, one of our Italian team members started working with MEH in November 2018.
Cinzia, 25, Italy
What made you apply to an European Voluntary Service (EVS) project?
After my studies I wanted to do something that I have never done before. I was not ready to enter the world of work, so I decided to do something alternative, something that would give me the opportunity to improve my work skills but also to grow from a personal point of view.
Why have you decided to get an internship abroad?
I wanted to challenge myself. After my studies in Germany I was not ready to go back home and I was looking for some opportunities abroad in order to acquire some experience and to improve my English.
MEH works in an international context with different employees around the world: how do you find yourself in this context? Which are the differences that you noticed most between England culture and your home country?
I have always wanted to live abroad and experience new cultures, environments and meet new people. Before coming to the UK, I did a Master in European Politics where I met classmates from all over the world. I really loved exchanging ideas, opinions and habits, because they help you to think more about yourself and to gain a different perspective of the world. It was literally a personal growth and I feel that working at MEH is giving me the same opportunities.
What is the thing you are missing most about your home country?
Food and nice weather of course! My family also, which has always been a great support for my trips and adventures abroad even if they would love me to go back home.
What is the thing you like most and the thing you would like to change about Liverpool?
I love Liverpool because there are many things to do and because the environment is really multicultural. People here are very friendly and easy to talk with (even if sometimes they are impossible to understand because of their scouse accent!)
If I could change something about Liverpool it would definitely be the cleanliness of the city, because sometimes it is really dirty.
Describe MEH in 3 words
Flexible, multicultural, broad
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. During these months I have learnt new skills and qualities that I did not even know to have and it has been teaching me a lot about my future dreams and dream job. I have also learnt about my strengths and weaknesses, and how to overcome them.
Working at MEH is sometimes a challenge; many deadlines, many projects, but it is also rewarding when working with the community and with young people. Indeed, feeling like you can make a difference on something and someone other than yourself is rewarding.
Do you think that your experience in MEH will be useful in a future? (Personal point of view)
For sure. MEH is helping me to enhance my confidence and self-esteem, encouraging me to do more and to overcome my fears. All the skills that I am learning here are helping me to clarify my ideas about my future job career.