Erasmus+ Trainsheep, Adina:
"This experience has deeply changed me forever"
I am Adina Elena Matei, a second year student at Ovidius Constanza University, I decided to participate in an Erasmus program immediately after hearing about it. In my case the project is “Erasmus+ traineeship”, which financially supports students who decide to carry out an apprenticeship in one of the countries that participate to the Program, acquiring both communication and intercultural skills, both "transversal skills much appreciated by future employers" .
I choose Italy first of all because it is a country that I love, secondly because I wanted to see new places and I was curious about making a comparison between our social and political system and the Italian one. I came into contact with the Entropia Association through a Romanian girl who had studied at Unical and who spoke about my situation to her professor who knew the Association and, through Daniela Ielasi, president of Entropia, he made sure to bring me here.
My experience with Entropia started in a positive way, they supported me from the first moment, helping me to find an apartment and picking me up at the station. This is an association with an impressive past and an important future: it develops cultural programs for young people, which have an educational function. The president coordinates everything efficiently: she keeps the team united, creates a pleasant and serious environment at the same time. You learn by working and you don’t feel the passing of time. From her I learned how a dream can become reality: from an idea a project can be born, which becomes concrete thanks to the organization and coordination of a group of people who are completely dedicated to it.
The volunteers of the Universal Civil Service always made me feel included, they never treated me like a foreigner: working with them I learned the meaning of respect and self- appreciation. I was welcomed with open arms even though it was a busy period for them: they were working on the realization of the second edition of the festival “Calabria in Fiore”.
During this festival, first of all I gave my working contribution: I helped as much as I could in the organization of the festival, from the preparation of the exhibitions to the arrangement of the spaces; I observed and learned how a team works, where everyone has a task and knows exactly what to do. From a cultural point of view, the festival contributed to expanding my horizons: the debates and information that I have heard, and which I am still re-elaborating, will be the beginning of my personal development, because they have led me to ask myself about problems that had not previously arisen.
During this period I also visited Italy. I found beautiful places: in San Marco Argentano I was very impressed by the very narrow streets, and also by the people who look out from the balconies and talk to each other from one side of the street to the other. Then I visited the Amalfi coast, where “it's all white and the mountain comes out of the sea” and between one stretch of sea and another there are pieces of land covered with flowers, lemons and cedars; people greet you even without knowing you and smile at you on the street.
I was shocked by the color of the sea, and the cleanliness of the beaches, which are also maintained thanks to the attention of those who frequent them: for example, I noticed that the pieces of plastic that fell to the ground were always collected.
Erasmus helped me to get to know myself better, to open up my horizons, not to judge others and to adapt myself. I learned to be more empathetic, kind, to help without expecting anything in return. This experience has deeply changed me forever: I bring home the awareness of how important it is to discuss and to dialogue, and the importance of small acts that can make a great difference.
Through the staff of the association and the volunteers, I had the privilege to learn more about Italian hospitality and traditions, culture, food, but above all to become more aware of what I would like in my future and in the future of my child.