„YMCA Europe is a working fellowship to strengthen movements where people grow in body, mind and spirit.“


25th January 2017

From YMCA Kyiv to YWCA - YMCA Aarhus

Hi everyone! My name is Kateryna, I am from Ukraine and I am a volunteer. It`s how I would introduce myself at the moment. I have been a member of the YMCA movement since 2013 volunteering for my local YMCA in Kyiv. Each year my involvement its growing and this is one of the reasons why in 2016 I became member of the Board.

With YMCA Kyiv "family"

With YMCA Kyiv "family"

It is really difficult to build a volunteer organization in Ukraine: you need to work hard and to know how to organize the working process, and when you don`t have enough experience in this twice difficult. Therefore, I decided to use this year to challenge myself and to get new knowledge in EVS project. I came to Denmark and now I am working in local KFUM og KFUK Åarhus. This is a big YMCA that has many members, volunteers and a also employees. On the beginning it was difficult to understand how I can be useful and how can I help here because the structure of organization is very different comparing with mine.

Now I am involved in few projects, I am working as a bartender in nonprofit café "Fairbar". It`s my first experience of working on such a job and I really enjoy learning from it. I have also meetings where I present my local Kyiv YMCA and where we discuss about the current situation in Ukraine. It's a big responsibility to represent my own country, but I am happy that I have this opportunity. In addition, now I am preparing for several YMCA festivals that will take place in February - April: dance workshops for children and teenagers and I am already looking forward to it.

Besides, I want to share with you about the place where I live because it was a good idea of living with local students. I live with 12 people on my floor and they are very friendly, open-minded and always helpful. I think it`s great opportunity to learn about the culture of the country and its young people.

In January, Aarhus becomes The Cultural Capital of Europe 2017, so I am lucky twice to be here and to join this event!
I wish success and inspiration to all EVS volunteers, we can do more than we think!

Author/Source: Kateryna Kostetska, YMCA Kyiv - Ukraine