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The first month has been rather a reflective one for me. My life is completely different to the one it was one month ago and this very new experience certainly demands time for adaptation. This period is teaching me the need for patience at certain times of life, at the same time it is showing me the beauty of really living in the present. 

Thessaloniki is a place that, despite not being small, can be very welcoming for a newcomer. A place where even though there is not much green, you can find very unique and peaceful spots. It is a city to discover with time and where I feel like I can find my place. And this is just the beginning, because as everyone has told us, the city will come back to life in September. 

I have decided to volunteer in two projects, the House of ARSIS and the Youth Support Center. Although in my frequent reflections I had some doubts, I now feel like I can gain a lot from being present in both places; they can teach me very similar and different things at once. I think these programs complement each other and show me two parts of a whole reality.

In the House of ARSIS I am getting to know all of the children, as building a solid relationship with them is a slow and challenging step. It is difficult to communicate between each other because we don´t speak the same language, but I am learning to build trust with them through non-verbal communication, playing and sharing moments together.

At the Kyn I am currently helping with the English classes. I really like the Kyn because the students only come if they wish to do so, thus it is a challenge for me to be a good teacher and make them enjoy our classes so that I will see them the next week. I normally work with older kids and I also enjoy these interactions a lot because I feel like the fact that I am also young helps us build a true connection. Right now it may be difficult to understand how everything that we are doing will impact us in the near future but I have trust; in myself, in my flat mates, in ARSIS and in all of the young people for which I am here

P.S. I cannot leave this comment without telling you about Samothraki! It’s an island that will not leave you indifferent; it has a unique and special essence, wonderful people that are eager to help you with anything you need, and beautiful “vathres” that you will find only there. 

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