Volunteering in Sofia

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By Lili Valtcheva, YES Bulgaria ‘11

LiliLast December, two of my friends and I decided to apply to be volunteers at an orphanage in Sofia.  In April, the orphanage contacted us about when we could begin.  It was a hard process, which is one reason that it is not a popular activity, but no matter—I am happy that together with my friends we started helping the orphanage with different things.

The first time we went there, it was just to meet the kids and to see how they will react to having us around.  Everything was fine and it looked like they liked us, but they were shy.  We decided that the next time we went, we would do a small sports activity and then explain what kinds of sports activities they can join in their schools.  It was interesting for the students, and they like it a lot.  During our activity, we ran together and then did some stretching, some track exercises, then we asked them what kinds of athletic activities they like to do.

The next weekend that we went to the orphanage, we joined them in the TV room and surprised them with a movie screening.  They were very happy and excited to watch the movie.  Afterwards, we met up just with the girls and bonded with them—talking and doing their hair and letting them do ours.  It was very fun and exciting for them to meet new people and to have the opportunity to become friends.

I hope we continue volunteering at the orphanage and can make a difference in the lives of the students there.