V. Week - Italy
Talking on Volunteering isn't easy for us but it is very important, especially after the big earthquake that hit our area last May. In that occasion, while thousands of families lived in tents and the situation was at its worst, thousands of volunteers came here from all over Italy to help in any possible way. This is the main reason of the importance of volunteering here, which is however a tradition here. Our people is used to volunteer in any kind of association to help people in need, disabled, immigrated, gypsies, elderly.
In our Partnership Comenius we worked in groups in our classes about volunteering, its reasons and we tried to think if we could do it. Then the English teacher suggested to have an experience for one week only and students accepted with their parents' pernission.
After these activities, in December 2012 we held our Volunteering week in cooperation with the association RECUPERANDIA which is part of PORTA APERTA (Open Door). There is a workshop, where people cooperate and share their experiences, respecting all their individual andand cultural differences and making the most of their own skills and resources. Recuperandia goes on with its activity thanks to the precious service of volunteers.
At Recuperandia people can bring things they no longer use (furniture, clothes, electric appliances, lamps, CDs, books etc.) or they can call the organization to empty their cellar or attic. All these things will be repaired, restored and then sold to other people which "will give them a new life".
The revenue from the sales is used to develop activities and projects in favour of poor people. This great association promotes an educational culture, careful to the re-utilization of recycled materials; an adequate civic sense, against the waste and favourable to recycling.
The students worked in small groups from Monday to Friday for two hours; the girls worked at the clothes shop where they folded used ones, tidied and cleaned while the boys worked in mechanic area and with books. Everybody was really happy to take part to the activity and some boys wanted to come another day with other groups.
Working at RECUPERANDIA as volunteers for students was absolutely a good and useful experience which will be done again. Giving new life to things isa really amazing and important for a more sustainable way of life.