I’m Pernille, I’m 23 years old and I’m from a small village in Norway called Langfjordbotn. In the beginning of September 2020 I moved to Bremen, Germany, to take part in a one-year volunteering project, European Solidarity Corps (ESC) through NaturKultur. Here i’m volunteering at Tobias-Schule. This is a school which is using the Waldorf education, also known as Steiner education. Its pedagogical direction that focuses on development of the pupils‘ intellectual, artistical, and practical skills in an integrated and holistic manner. The cultivation of pupils‘ imagination and creativity is a central focus. When I first arrived in the school I was so impressed by the buldings. It did not look like a school building. It was three old buldings, surrounded by gardens and green areas, playgrounds and woods.
My tasks in the school is every varied, everything from garden, math/english/music classes to kitchen. In the Garden we have some chicken, so the kids learn to take care of animals, they feed them and clean for them. Also, we pick up leaves from the trees or plants, that we later use for cooking in the kitchen. The pupils get good, healthy homemade meals for lunch. Every Monday and tuesday I’m in the kitchen with the pupils making lunch. Its a different menue from day to day, but its always include a lot of greens, and it`s always every tasty. After the meal is prepared, we all eat together, kids and teachers.
My favorite class to participate in is gardening, because then we spend most of the time outside and are active. But also I like the fact that everyday and every class is different from day to day, and also depending on which class (from 4-12 class). For me, the younger kids are often easier to be with, because its easier to communicate with them. They talk and tell me more basic things, and that fits my level in German better.
I already have a lot of fun stories and moments at the school, and that makes me enjoy working there even more. I got a mentor from the school that is super nice and helpful. He always makes sure that I enjoy my tasks and that I have a good time working there. which I really appreciate, since i think it is very important, and it makes my experience at the school better.
When I first arrived here the corona restrictions wasn’t that strict. We could still do sports, go to some bars, shops where open. But in November they closed again, and it became stricter. And in some way im glad about it, because that made me and the people I live with closer. Through christmas holiday, we had to come up with other creative things to do, so knitting became our new hobby. and now even tho holiday is over we still spend a lot of time together in the evening knitting and watching netflix together.
In total we are 12 ESC volunteers living and volunteering in Bremen, and we all live very close to each other. We all come from different countries, such as Spain, Italy, Hungary and Greece. Over the next few months I would like to learn more German, try more fun activities at work. And once the Covid-19 restrictions are lifted, I would also like to travel around in Germany, and explore the countryside around Bremen by bike with my friends.
Pernille is hosted on our project „Volunteers for a Green Future“, financed by the European Solidarity Corps and Jugend für Europa.