Dear diary… here is my journey at the IS

Long term volunteering

Written by Anaïck from France

June 2022

September 2021

Dear diary, 

September was hectic! I went to Lille for a week training with amazing people and SCI France. We learned a lot and threw a great party. I arrived in Antwerp after the training and discovered the volunteer apartment. After enjoying a few hours in the city I would spend the next few months in, I took the train to Nuremberg. There, I followed the first training of the MOVE project with incredible volunteers from across Europe. We talked about sustainability and the impacts of flying. 

When I got back it was time to work! I met everyone at the office and was given a bunch of different tasks. I think I acclimated myself quite well. We still have a few days where we telework but I can already tell that I love going to the office. 

BY THE WAY! I bike now! I shall be a pro at biking by the end of the year. 

October 2021

Dear diary,

It’s been a month now and I celebrated my 23rd birthday in Antwerp eating fries! Life is good. We got a Covid scare at the office, but now everyone is okay. I started working on the International Committee Meeting, where most Branches meet to take decisions regarding SCI. It happens twice in the year, in December we have a big session of 5 days and in June just a day. There are a lot of documents to create! But it’s fun. It feels like I’m in the backstage of a show running everything from behind. 

Chantal (our International Coordinator) and I decided to launch the first International Volunteering Day. On December 5th, we will hold an online event on GatherTown. I hope I will manage to create the virtual world and that people will like it. 

November 2021

Dear diary, 

I feel like I have had enough waffles, beers and fries for a lifetime… but I cannot stop getting them. 

Chantal and I have been working hard on the ICM. The fair is taking me a lot of time but I am meeting amazing people. The virtual world is moving forward… and great news! We have come up with a virtual volunteer named Pierrette. Teréz (our Finance officer or Sugar mamma) also started showing me stuff for the statistics, it looks quite complicated. Though, I am sure we will manage.

As a true tech volunteer, I now have 2 screens on my desk. Helps me pretend I know everything I am doing, ahaha. 

December 2021

Dear diary,

It is Christmas time at the office! I am back home for the holidays after an amazing party with the office at the volunteer’s house. I went to the Christmas markets in Koln with some friends. 

December was busy! ICM went very well, I hope the next one will be as smooth. The fair was a success, we have to learn from it, but I am happy with it. People loved Pierrette, which is great. Hasna (the previous project volunteer and Italian chef) and I have been filming a video, I think we are ready for Hollywood. The bloopers are amazing.

See you next year 🙂

PS: not a pro-biker, had an accident. 

January 2022

Dear diary, 

HAPPY NEW YEAR! My head is filled with statistics and branch codes. Teréz and I are having quite some fun despite the difficulty of the finances tasks. Claudia (our communication and volunteer officer/star), Teréz and I also filled in the minutes of ICM, we had quite some laughs… 

The office has changed a lot lately and I finally succumbed to Covid after 2 years of resistance. 

February 2022

Dear diary, 

February went really fast. Teréz and I finished the statistics and I was off for a week. Claudia and I decided to organise another International Volunteering Day in May. It should be different than the one in December. Meaning that Pierrette is back!

PS: Biking in the cold and in the rain is awful!

PS2: We had people coming over to change the windows and a mouse entered the apartment… Crazy mad house the night we discovered it, ahaha. 

March 2022

Dear diary, 

March was lovely! I went to Innsbruck for a week for the follow-up training of the MOVE project. It was a lot of fun. This time we focused on the creation of a toolkit for SCI to follow on better ways to have volunteers come to projects. 

I am still working on the fair and managing the other tasks I have to do. It feels like Covid is over, so we can go to the office even more. I should start working on FUNding Peace quite soon with Eri and Kerry (our 2 amazing projects organisers). 

April 2022

Dear diary, 

I managed a whole office meeting by myself! I started working on the project FUNding Peace where I am managing the online platform. It looks quite fun. We had a few meetings and decided on the designer we wanted. 

I think the month of May will be a lot between the fair and the platform, but things are looking good. Did I mention I was also working on June ICM? 

PS: I finally took Teréz to Belchicken. I think she is addicted now, ahaha. 

May 2022

Dear diary, 

I spent my last weeks at the office. Saying bye to everyone was really sad. The fair went very well, the Branches and Partners were really happy about it. The platform of FUNding peace is moving along quite well. I had some difficulties at first but now I can say I am doing great. I hope people will like it. 

With the office and my friends, we celebrated my departure on different occasions, we had a lot of food and drinks. On my last day we had an amazing lunch. I created the IS wall at the office and Eri and I almost burned the kitchen. 

PS: Do not tell anyone, but I think I will miss biking. 

June 2022

Dear diary, 

The platform for FUNding peace has been launched and the group will have the physical training in a few days. ICM is around the corner, I am hoping that we will get to have some fun with the minutes again. 

I got an email from a fake Will Smith in the info email, I think this was the best email I ever got! 

I am almost done with my volunteering. In the next few days, we will have ICM, I will finish the newsletter and some tasks, empty my google drive and that will be it. I know this is not a final goodbye to SCI or the office, but still it is quite bittersweet. What I will remember the most from all of this is the laughs we shared and the lovely people I met… (As well as the beers and food 😉 ) 

Amitié 😉