Här skriver Océane om
sin tid som volontär i Sverige.

Volontär betyder att man
gör något frivilligt,
i det här fallet
att resa till ett annat land
för att hjälpa till
och lära sig nya saker.

Blogg ESC Volontär

Här skriver Océane Dommanget på engelska om sin tid som volontär i Sverige.

Océane Dommaget och Pia Alexius

Océane Dommanget och Pia Alexius, områdeschef för fritidsgård Centralen.

April 2023

Welcome once again to my diary of volunteering in Sweden.

It has been six months since I started my volunteering experience and this is the second time I am writing about it.

Now, I am really used to my routine and environment. I know the city and the region well and I even had the opportunity to visit several parts of the country. Which is really cool as a whole because one of my goals was to discover as much as possible of this beautiful country's landscapes, as well as its culture. I've really settled in here, I know how the general system works and I now act like a native and not a tourist. I'm pretty proud of that. It's official because I managed to get my personal number as a citizen and my Swedish national identity card. Which is a big step in terms of my integration into the country. It really makes my life here easier on a daily basis.

In the last few months I've made quite a lot of progress in Swedish. I'm starting to understand when someone speaks next to me, but it's still difficult to express myself. However, I've made great progress since I started the course in January and I'm happy with the way it's going.

As far as the work is concerned, I have largely taken my bearings, whether it be the
environment or my colleagues. I have integrated well and it is a pleasure to go to work. I
have done a lot of activities with the children and it is always nice to spend time with them. As usual, I organize manual activities. For example, recently we have been doing a lot of painting and making salt dough together, which they have really enjoyed. I have also suggested sports games that the French used to play as children, which they did not know in Sweden. We also play knowledge games on general culture such as geography and flags. Last week, we organised a special girls' night for the teenagers, as they are not very present at the daily evenings at the center. So we planned an evening for her which was a success. Finally, i have a better rapport with the children and young people, we have more affinity, which is more pleasant.

I also took advantage of the winter to take holidays. I had the opportunity to visit the island of Åland and Helsinki, in Finland. It was really beautiful and I enjoyed it a lot. I was also able to compare the two countries, which are completely different, and it was very interesting. I also headed to Swedish Lapland, to the northernmost city in the country : Kiruna. This destination is really the Swedish destination by exception. Between snow, northern lights, dog sledding, the ice hotel and a visit to a Samí camp with reindeers; I was completely immersed in wonderful experience.

Finally, I went to the mid-term (meeting for the CES) and I was able to redefine my objectives and know where I am in my volunteering experience. Then, I met the volunteers from the On-arrival course again, which was very nice. I really enjoyed this update and share a moment with these people, it makes me super happy.

I'm done for the last few months, where I celebrate my six months. As always, there are ups and downs but I am making progress and I am looking forward to using the time I have left to discover as much as I have seen so far.

See you in three months,
Océane Dommanget

Barn och vuxna som gör trolldeg
Barn i idrottshall
Oceane med slädhundar
Oceane upptäcker fiskskelett på stranden

December 2022

Welcome to the diary of my volunteering in Lomma.

It's been three months since I started my volunteering, so this is the first time I'm writing about my feelings and the beginning of my experience.

I am now starting to get used to life in Sweden and to take my marks in the city, whether it is in Lomma or Malmö, I am starting to have my points of reference, which allows me to be at ease and to install a certain routine. The same goes for the weather, which isn't necessarily a big change compared to the north-east of France (where I'm from), although it's been windier and we've had snow here! I was so happy to be able to walk and play in the snow, like a child. Indeed, it's been a long time since we had real snow in France, so it felt good to be able to enjoy it.

As far as work is concerned, I got used to the place and my colleagues quite quickly. To put the environment in perspective, I work at Fritidsgård Centralen on Mondays and Wednesdays and then on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday evenings, Karstorpskolan on Tuesdays and Fladängsskolan on Thursdays. On Fridays I can choose the location according to the need, so I remain flexible. So I have three places of work, with different colleagues and children, which I think is great because it breaks my daily routine and allows me to meet more people, and also to be in a different atmosphere because the children don't ask for the same activities in different schools.

Speaking of activities, I was able to propose and lead several. In particular creative activities, so far the children and I have made bracelets, pins, clay objects, cards for Father's Day and Christmas, finger puppets and painted cups, boxes and canvases. We also made Halloween decorations, dug pumpkins and had a party for the event. At the moment I am preparing the next activities for Christmas before I go on holiday and return to France for the festive season. I was about to forget the sports activities, like gymnastics, basketball, ping-pong and so on. I also took a climbing course so that I can help the young people climb on the climbing wall at the center. I am also learning to skateboard thanks to the ramps we have at the center. In addition, sometimes we organize tournaments with mini-games for the younger children, but we also know how to relax by watching films
together and even the World Cup matches with the older children. Moreover, with them, evenings can be as calm as they are lively. I organized an evening on the theme of France by cooking crepes, playing kahoot and listening to French music. We often have parties like that, cooking pizzas or roasting marshmallows and hot dogs on the fire. Besides all this, I also intervene in French classes for high school students, in order to introduce
myself but especially to speak about the European Solidarity Corps, with the aim of making them aware of the different ways to go abroad.

Moreover, I had the opportunity to meet a lot of other volunteers coming from all over Europe and even further. Indeed, one month after my arrival I participated in the On arrival course in Stockholm, which consists of a weeklong meeting with other volunteers who are located in the country to talk about the volunteering mission, determine objectives and basics to know about life in Sweden. We also had the opportunity to get to know each other and play lots of games together. In short, it is a time of sharing and getting to know new people, and why not create new friendships. Moreover, one of the organizations that welcomes volunteers, called Awesome people, had a meeting with other volunteers that I didn't know, which allowed me to expand my network even
more. This time it was in Örebro and we visited the city after having a presentation of their organization and playing escape games to learn more about democracy, a fun way to learn more about this topic. We all stayed together in a big house in Kopparberg, a bit like a flat share, it was great to live all together for a few days. We had a great time together, especially at Christmas time. In short, I enjoyed all these moments with them and we
plan to meet again soon, so I hope that there will be more meetings like this, and that some of them will come to Lomma.

That's it for the last three months, which have been busy to say the least. I'm really happy with the start of this experience. It's gone by so quickly, which I guess is a good sign, and I can't wait to find out what's in store for the next few months. I will write again in three months, so you can follow my adventure.

See you,
Océane Dommanget

Närbild Océane i vinterhuva

Sidansvarig: Pia Alexius

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