The most difficult was to take the decision to leave, from then on, once on the plane, a fantastic adventure began that I will never forget. I remember at the beginning I was even giving up my application to CESIE. I was afraid I was not able to leave, I had never been so far away from home and especially worked with blind people. In fact, when you find yourself confronted with situations, you find that you have resources that you did not expected.
At the airport Lam, director of Vietnam and Friends, and Huong, coordinator, came to pick me up, always ready to help. They brought me to the volunteer’s house, a three-floors house, in the local style, that I shared with other international volunteers of different nationalities (French, German, Italian and even a Brazilian). They were my main travelling companions, with whom I shared the days of work and even the moments of leisure.
Our mission consisted in teaching English to blind students, between 8 and 16 years old, in a school in Hanoi. Contrary to what we might think, these guys are lively, intelligent, ask questions and are curious. I have been very fond of them and I think I have learned so much from their great ability to overcome the obstacles that their disability sometimes involves. I made friends with the local volunteers of the association, all young and down to earth. In general, all Vietnamese people are very kind to the Westerners, they are fascinated by our culture and are very open minded. And then there is Hanoi, a huge, chaotic, polluted city where you find everything, whatever your interests are. After learning how to cross the road and dodging the scooters. You can try one of the many Asian dishes that are completely different from ours and all of them very good, or go out in the evenings on the streets of the city center, always full of people and tourists and every kind of shops.
Discovering Asian culture which so different from my culture, has opened my mind, I understood so many things about myself, I trained my expectations and tasted my imagination. I had fun and at the same time I met some great people!
Marco, EVS volunteer within the Erasmus+ project “2IQM”
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