“Six months of volunteering” – by Chrisna de Nazare da Rocha

“I dedicate this article to my six months of volunteering in which I have learned many things
from different people and experiences. Here I show a summary of the activities or centers that
have impacted me the most according to the month.”

Robin Hood

As the first center I went to, I remember it with affection and enthusiasm. At that time it was
not so cold and we could play with the kids in the playground, which we like more because
they move more freely and we can play dynamic games than when we are indoors. The main
objective is to spend time with them in a fun way, because they live in the social center, so the
best way to make them have a good time and forget their situation is through play.


After exploring Robin Hood for a while I decided that Recuperare was the new special place. It
is a hospital where kids with disease seek some wellness time. We usually bring them colors,
paints, lollipops and we also make origami and let their creative imagination run wild. Unlike
Robin Hood, most of the children there cannot move easily for one reason or another. So
while creating the creative drawing workshop we exchange stories and get to know each
other as much as possible, either through the mothers, the drawing or the phone translator.

Workshops in Schools

After the first contacts, centers, and after the Christmas vacations I discovered that my new
passion was schools. I went there mainly to bring a piece of my culture to a few children. The
energy that the little ones give off when they learn something new is what has motivated me
the most to create games, presentations, etc.
Through their eyes I can always find something new or remember something from the past
that fills me with enthusiasm.


Just like the schools and kindergartens full of kids. Neghinita is also a center for children, but
also including those with disabilities. And as in Robin Hood, play is our main goal. But the big
difference between them is that here the children are much younger and the activities are
done in the morning and not in the afternoon. Also, since they have a lot of energy at that
time, jumping, running, playing, playing and playing is more intense, which I really like
because it brings out the little girl in me. Personally I love it and I have also become very fond
of the children we are used to see normally.


I had the opportunity to get to know Alternativa later rather than sooner and that has helped
me to get to know the other centers better.
I can name this center with one word: overcoming.
I think this is because it is the only center that does not have children as protagonists but
adults with disabilities. The routine of the center is concrete, preparing crafts, dancing a lot
and then going back to calm. Despite their problems they always have a big smile on their
faces and they are very energetic people. I know that whenever I go there I will always have
moments of joy with one of them.


In April we got out of the routine and started with the walks to the countryside. The
experience was a turning point in the day to day that is always appreciated. And also the team
was very reinforced. We created a puppet story from zero, with scenery included that we
were able to take to the kindergartens in the surrounding area, not to mention that I love the
walks and I was able to see the yellow countryside and a little closer to traditional Roman life.
In addition we also went to high schools to give talks and the young people were very nice,
respectful and all showed interest and joy to see us there.
For me it was the best month.


The month is not over yet, so there is no conclusion. What I can say is that time is passing
faster and faster and all these months behind me have pushed me to develop my more
creative, artistic and youthful side.
The volunteer experience has its good and bad moments, its pros and cons, but it is an
experience worth doing at least once in a lifetime. At this point I am grateful to be here.


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