Who can advise future candidates better than our volunteers ?
Volunteering is not only an opportunity for young people to help others for a year, it’s also an opportunity to face new challenges and try new experiences. Lilou after graduating from High School is currently doing her Service Civique abroad, in Belgium. Lilou is helping people with intellectual disabilities.
Lilou had the opportunity to share her experience during an online event. She now explains us how she prepared her speech, what she learned from the experience and what she wishes to share with those who are wondering about volunteering.
“It’s a human adventure I will remember forever”
“My name is Lilou and I’m 18 years old. I’ve been a volunteering since September 2020 at “l’Arche d’Aywaille” in Belgium.
L’Arche is an international organization where people with mental disabilities live together with people to support them in their daily life. We work together to support them, with professionals and young volunteers. Our action is organized around their daily life, in which everyone participates according to their abilities.round their daily life, in which everyone participates according to their abilities.
On February 18, 2021, I took part in a videoconference during which I presented my volunteer experience to young people who were considering to volunteer but were still not sure to take the leap. The goal was to encourage them to do so, by explaining my background and giving them concrete details of what I was doing. I agreed to make this presentation because I think it is important to share my experience and help others make the choice to get involved. I was not very confident before the videoconference, because I’m not very comfortable speaking in public and I tend to be stressed out. To prepare, I wrote a plan with 5 main themes, so I would be clear. After my presentation, young people asked me questions, including why I wanted to become a volunteer, how the selection process went, what I do exactly and what I plan to do next. I really liked answering to those questions, because I really like my mission and I tried to show that sharing lives of people with disabilities is a great experience. It comforts me every day in my choice to work in this sector.
I hope that the others perceived my motivation, and that they thought that if I had managed to find an interesting mission, they could also do it: indeed, there is a large choice of different civic services offered by VISA-AD, and I think everyone can find something that interests them.
I chose to go to a foreign country to discover another culture. Even if it scared me a little to leave my family after having gratuated, I don’t regret anything. Belgians are super friendly and welcoming. I hope I have encouraged young people to go abroad. In conclusion, I say to those who hesitate, to go for it : it’s a great experience and I’m sure it will have allowed me to be more confident regarding my professional choices.
It’s a human adventure I will remember forever : JUST GO FOR IT !“