My name is Wieland Schweizer and I am just finishing my EVS of 10 months in Aarhus, Denmark. I had already been on an exchange program for 6 months in Italy when I was 15/16 years old and that was also one of the main impulses for me to work abroad. It was just this uncertainty, excitement and curiosity about a new country that motivated me to start this little experience.
The accomodation I am living in is located in a small suburb close to Aarhus. I am the only volunteer living in this very appartement but my neighboors are also two volunteers. Apart from the project itself I also learnt a lot just living on my own for the first time. For me it wasn’t so obvious that one has to clean, cook and do the laundry regularely. Luckily these skills where not that hard to acquire and sooner or later I was feeling homey in my little flat.
My project is called Plejehjem – Tranbjerg which literally means nursing home – Tranbjerg (which is a small village close to Aarhus). It’s a location where mostly old and demented people live. Because I am only a volunteer and not an educated workforce I can only help in certain areas. I am, for example, helping a lot in the kitchen, which includes making food and cleaning. But that’s only one part of many, I also go on little trips with the old people to the nearest supermarket or just for a walk. In addition, I also participate from time to time in several activities such as singing or gymnastics. These are just some parts of my work, in reality there are a lot more small things, which I can’t all describe here. In th beginning the life with old and also sick people definitely was a huge shock and totally unfamiliar to me. I first had to get used to everything I experienced, which wasn’t always easy. However, this also gave me a big oppurtunity for me to grow and mature.
Overall, I can say that there were some heavy ups and downs during my stay in Denmark, especially in the beginning. It has never been „easy“. Nevertheless, I can also feel that I have learnt extremely much, not only about my self but also about life. I met people with perspectives and opinions I would have never thought about about and that totally broadened up my horizon. In addition, I saw some beatiful new places and got to know a, for me, completely new country together with its culture and language and for all of these things I am so grateful! I’m deeply thankful for all the people I met and laughed with during my stay in Denmark. <3