My first six-months in Inspire

I arrived 4/07. To summarize this summer, the heat and the sun. I remember the first day as if it was yesterday. Luis welcomed me greatly. I understood that Inspire is a family, we had a drink for the departure of Allison.

First work weeks were very difficult essentially because of the heat. For this reason I very fast returned to France in search of freshness.

My return was complicated: problems with planes then the departure of my flatmate and friend Luis.

Inspire
Inspre

I adapted myself to the Maltese life in a few months and I love working at Inspire the week even the weekend and party with the other volunteers the rest of the time. We share a lot: passion of the soccer, cooking, drinking, the music, the concert, the festival …

I am very happy because I had no problems with English and I was very to meet friends and even Maltese friends.

I am also very satisfied with my work to Inspire because I am very multi-purpose: my work is very diversified. I did not want entered in a routine.

I like visiting Malta, it is a small island with paradisiac landscapes  as Comino. I visited this island with my family and they were delighted.

Blue Lagon Comino
Blue Lagoon

I love working in Bulebel with the adults. There is an exceptional working atmosphere with people very invested. I shall want to thank Marcelle, Donatella, both Lindsey, Nadège, Lara, Michel.

I also liked giving swimming lessons with Silvio and Luke. I like playing in the playroom with the children. I love working in the charity shop with Nelly and Rita

What I preferred it is the outings with the adults in Gozo, the barbecue in Marc’s house, the restaurant in St Julian and I ask for making the outing in Italy with them. Bravo Lindsey Cassar for the organization.

Ramla Bay Gozo
Ramla bay Gozo

To finish I shall like thanking Danjela and Ina: we work in good capacities.

Thank you and safe road to Maria MSR BOOS for everything.

Thanks to all the volunteers without whom Inspire would be very sad.

On a more personal plan, thanks to Marine Marcilhacy, Justine Cuerva and Pierre Perra who guided me towards this project.

Allez l’Olympique Lyonnais

 

Guillaume Heyraud

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Malta, Inspire and Me

Bongu!

My name is Catherina, I am from Germany and a “German Red Cross” volunteer here at Inspire. A big thank you to the “German Red Cross” and of course to Inspire for this great opportunity!

My experience here on Malta started exactly 4 months ago and I enjoyed every moment here. In Germany I just finished High School and knew that I wanted to do a voluntary service. The thought of a work which combines children and animals or in general people and animals seemed to me impossible to find as a voluntary service… Until I found Inspire. I was so happy that there was a chance I can do this work for a whole year in country that seemed already beautiful from the internet. This four months showed me that I did everything right by applying for this voluntary service at Inspire. Working here taught me a lot about children with autism, how it varies from child to child, how to take care of them and a lot more which is probably to long to explain now. As an example, children with autism understand a lot by seeing things this is why we show them visuals to tell them what we are going to do next or what they are supposed to do. Moreover, I learned a lot about horseback riding therapy in particular about horses themselves. The only experience I had with horses was when I was a child and rode for two or three times. I still do respect them a lot but are much more comfortable with them and know how to lead and also handle them when they are a little stubborn. There are a lot more working stations at Inspire which I also enjoy but I don’t want to tell everything in advance come here and explore it for yourself it is definitely worth it.

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We, all the Inspire volunteers, became a little family and I love to spend time with them. We have fun, exchange our cultures, lifestyles and opinions. On Malta there are also three other “German Red Cross” volunteers we (the two-other cool German girls with whom I live in a flat) know from the training back in Germany. We are also really good friends by now and explore Malta and its beautiful places & events together.

Before I arrived on Malta I read that the population here is less than in Frankfurt, my hometown and I was wondering how life would look like here. But to be honest you don’t really notice the difference. Of course, the villages are smaller but they have their southern flair which I really like. The mixture of Mediterranean and Arabic makes this island so special but it makes Maltese so complicated to learn. But at least I know a few words and sentences now. Hope in the next 8 months I learn a little bit more and have a wide range of new and wonderful experiences.

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INSPIRE: MULTICULTURAL, GREAT EXPERIENCE, NICE PEOPLE

My Name is Jordi Puig, I’m from Spain and I arrived in Malta three months ago to be volunteer for one year in Inspire.

I remember this May and June when I was all day thinking about looking for a new experience in my life. At first, I was looking for going to another country to find a job or doing a course to try to improve my English, but a friend of mine who was volunteer in Inspire recommended me this experience. I got in touch with Danjela in June and finally I decided to start here in September.

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I arrived here on 12th September and I can’t forget my first hours in Malta. I was very nervous (with whom I’m going to work? how will the work be? how will the other volunteers be?…

(These were my concerns), but then you start to know Inspire, your new colleagues, the Inspire workers… and you are more calm. All of them, Danjela, Ina… help you if you need something.

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My first days I noted I had to improve my English because the level of inspire workers and my colleagues who were here more time than me was better than my level, but step by step I’ve noted I’ve improved my English in two months, above all thanks to the people who are with you every day.

My flat is very nice and I live with a French girl. We are very well together and we help each other when we need something. This flat is near Inspire (five minutes walking), near the beach (five minutes walking) and we have different supermarkets near.

On the other hand, one of the things that has surprised me most has been the multiculturalism, and I would like to highlight it about this volunteering because I think is important to be in contact with people from different countries to be better person and to understand better how works the world.

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Finally, after three months, I can say “Malta is my house”. Come to Inspire have been a big change in my life, because I had never worked with children and I had never lived out of Spain, but I can say I’m happy to be here and I hope to be here till next September. I recommend this experience to anyone who want to improve her or his English, open the mind and meet wonderful people.

Jordi Puig

A change in my life

Hi, my name is Rozália and I come from Slovakia, Šamorín. It’s a small country in the middle of Europe. I came to Malta trough my Slovakian sending organization, INEX. The time pass so fast, I’m here already 4 months on this beautiful island. If somebody told me one year ago I’ll live on Malta, I don’t believe that.

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I’m 30 years old, so the decision and opportunity came in the last minute. In May I decided to make a change in my life. I finished my work at beauty industry and after came this offer to come to work for Inspire in Marsascala. Before I never heard about them and I never been to Malta. But I find out is something what I like to do and the place is where I like to live, and its good opportunity to learn something new and get experiences in this kind of social work and improve my English.

Since every day I work in different area and people, it’s good because I don’t get used to. I work in big international team of young people, most of them are from France, Spain, Ireland or Belgium. What is also important for me I have enough free time to do my hobbies, sport and travel around Malta. I have already visited the most of places in Malta, but I can say Marsascala is one of the best places, beautiful sea side, beaches, harbor, kind people and everything is so close. It’s reminds my hometown.

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MELA, Inspire me

Marsaskala, 1st November 2017
I still remember my first day In Malta. It was the 23rd of July 2017, I arrived a little bit confused at the airport because of the weather and the Maltese Language which is like a mix of arabic and italian. The most striking thing upon my arrival were the fireworks; Boom, Perhaps to say to me WELCOME …Finally I understood It was for a festival to celebrate a Saint. The thing that you have to know about this Island is that Maltese people really appreciate to keep their culture alive especially related with the christianism celebrations. During the summer it was like the 14th july in France our National Day but here in Malta there was numerous festivals throughout the season.
Mela(Maltese word means Ok and more…)At luqua airport a taxi driver was waiting for me holding a sign with my name. At this moment I was thinking, I had to give up my french and start to speak in english… It was a disaster but step by step in the car I felt more confortable. I was reminded of my english teachers and I successfullly held a discussion with the taxi driver …Thanks to them.

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I arrived to my flat and I met one of my flatemates . He gave me a tour of the apartment and he took me to a pub called Zion to introduce me to the other volunteers and interships . I felt in my place immediately even though I had some difficulties in understanding. Most of the Inspire team are really respectful and patient…I really appreciate the fact people try to explain things slowly according your english level. Everyone has to speak english even if they could speak in their own Language.
One of the best things in the EVS experience is the mix of the cultures . There are a lot of people from all over Europe and the world … You have to be aware and to be listening to learn from the others and sometimes to teach … Amazing opportunity to become more openminded and be in tune with humanity. Being a volunteer provides you with the feeling that you´re more useful for society. Let me explain you my first day to Inspire
Inspire.

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After a short night I was ready to work . I had an induction to know what my tasks in the Foundation will be. First of all Inspire is a therapy and leisure centre. Most of the time we have to take care of autistic children and adults with disabilities . Being volonteer for Inspire means we have be to involved with all the rest, that it is to say cleaning the saddle club, helping in the Charity Shop…
The work in Inspire is really admirable because of the staff and the other volunteers. Even if it´s sometimes difficult there is always a good atmosphere.
Few weeks later I improved my english and it was more easier to share with the Team. Few months later the team is already becomes your second family . An Evs in Malta is really attractive, everything is done with intensity so no one is ready to go back. Everyday is enjoyable, take it easy and Inspire me.

Myriam, France

Marsaskala – The experience

It’s been a while since I arrived here, to be exactly 2 months, which have been completely different of what I used to, being in a country that mixes schedules and traffic rules from England with the Arabic language and Italian culinary habits. Being that my first impression it was sure, this experience was going to be interesting.
My main purposes for coming here were going abroad to do something useful, related with my studies and learning English, which after my “Inspire” experience I can say, these three have been fulfilled. First of all, no one may feel he/she is doing more worthy rather the ones who are helping other people, moreover when those who are getting your help are disabled, in many different ways.
Second of all, as a physical activity professional, these 2 months working with children have been a good training in order, getting experience in the matter of handle, face and making the most of the time with them. A performing which was always focused in the future, cause perhaps, one day I will have got to work with other kids, either disabled or not though children anyway. It has been also unexpected such niceness, which you only can be delighted with, in a one to one session, as you are always working in Inspire, when you truly interact with them and realize how is the kid, his/her thoughts and feelings.
Third of all, I have been told that you will never be perfect in English here, It’s true and false at the same time, because English is the second language here, much better than other countries, but if you are pretending to get a C2 level or similar just because either you are working here or living here you will not achieve it, at least you have to be in constant contact with the wide range of native speaker who are living here, and work hard, trying to learn as much English as you can by your own, otherwise it will take much more time for you.
Regarding, I have to point and remember, all the surroundings of Inspire, the horse care, all the staff who are always willing to help you in any way, either you have a problem at work, home or even if you don’t know how to plan the next trip, which you usually do with the others volunteers. Special mention for them, you will have the opportunity to meet such nice people with no bad intention, all of them reliable persons, worthy to know them deeper because when you are alongside good people, they make you better person as they did with me. You just need to come here with an open mind and empty of prejudice.
Finally, I’m grateful to Inspire for giving me this opportunity, which has made me better person and more experienced. Thank you.

Rubén

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Multicultural come-together

My name is Elizabeth, I`m 24 years old and I am an Austrian citizen.

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I chose to come to Malta/Marsaskala to work as a volunteer and to experience the work with children. Since the beginning of May I am taking care of children, horses and rabbits. The children’s age is a big range between 3 and 13 years. The best parts of the work are the playing, singing, swimming and having lunch with our sweet kiddies. Some of them have autism , so we use visuals to show them the upcoming activities. Every day can be different, because every child has their special behaviour and needs, it never gets boring. At the afternoons I spend my time mostly at the multisensory rooms. That means I am playing/talking one to one with a child in the three different rooms for 1 hour per kid. The first room is the colourful softroom that includes swings, balls, bean bags, a trampoline and much more. The dark room has a lot of light effects and a funny piano to jump on and make sounds. The last room is the quite room, complitely white, with a lot of pillows, wáter bed and for example a relaxing large swing.

Another parts of working at Inspire are the Charity Shops in the beautiful capital Valletta and Marsaskala of course. There it is easy to chat with maltese people and get an impression of working as a salesperson.

In Marsaskala we are also taking care of the horses and rabbits, like feeding and brushing them. Same as at the beginnig I have a lot of respect of horses, never worked with or rode a horse before, but we are a group that works perfectly together and that makes it much more easier.

My flat is just a 7 minutes walk away from the main working área and I live with 2 other girls together. All the other volunteers are living near in Marsaskala. We are a big group, it is really easy to get to know eachother well, because in our freetime we explore this little lovely Island together. After 4 month I still haven’t seen everyhting. Enough activities to do, specially in the summertime, like swimming, snorkeling, diving, rockclimbing, visiting the historical places like the old capital Mdina and so on. For the series fans of Game of Thrones you can find some filming spots on this nice Island. The more touristical little neighbour Islands Gozo and Comino are also worth visiting. Lots of festivals are offered in the summertime, that you can easily reach by bus. In 2018 Valletta will be the european capital of culture, so much more events are going to be offered.

At the beginning of my European Volunteer Service, I visited the On-Arrival Training at the little fisher village Marsaxlokk near Marsaskala. We had 4 days to meet other young volunteers from different organisations to talk about our experience here on Malta. I enjoyed these days pretty much, because it was again a multiculutal exchange between people from all over europe and we got to know the background of other young adults who are moving to Malta for a new chapter in their life. Some of those I met again.

For now I can call Malta my home. I got used to their habits and their interesting way of speaking English with a strong sort of arabic accent. I love the sea, the local fruits and vegetables, the Sunday fishmarket in Marsaxlokk, our great reggae bar in front of the beach and the hot summer weather.

Definitely a great opportunity for young aduts to live there own life in a foreign country in Europe and get an impression of how a social organisation/foundation works.

Elis1

 

 

 

Free Bird

July 4th 2017

My name is Fatima, I come fromFrance, more exactly in an Island called Mayotte which is situated in the Indian Ocean between Madagascar and Mozambique.

Before arriving in Malta I had experience as an Au pair in the UK. I also did a short EVS in Portugal with Vertigem in Porto De Mos. I had the idea to do another EVS after that and Inspire was on my list. On one side deciding to go abroad and be a volunteer at Inspire wasn’t a big deal for me because I knew exactly what I wanted. And the other side is that taking this decision was a little bit challenging for me because I could apply for a real job. Finally, I felt that I need to live this experience first then I will see what I can do for the future.

Coming to Malta was for me a good way to be reconnected with my initial fields and get better my English.Inspire provided me the opportunityto know more about other cultures, improve my intercultural skills that will be required in my future work as an activist. For that reason, I thought this experience will help me to progress not only my professional knowledge but also personal growth. It develops your capacity to adapt in foreigner country and put you out of your comfort which may be used to be good.

Moreover, workingdirectly with people especially with children is always like a second breathe for me; it is a real pleasure. They always do something that surprised you in the good way. Work with autistic children can be difficult;sometimes is hard but it always pays off. It required qualities such as empathy, patience, intercultural and communication skills. The two last are still what I try to achieve.

Although I had already experience with autistic children, I am really looking forward to see how horses can be therapeutic. I never work with horses or rabbits before, the only thing I knew about the horse was in the movie “The horse Whisperer”. Now I can imagine their therapeutic because being incontact with them can increase personal development.

The first time with the horses was quiet awkward for me because I was in the wrong position with one of them. I didn’t know at that time, I have to be in a particular position. Then everything was alright, I started feeling comfortable and appreciatedbeing in their contact.

I arrived in Malta on 6thApril and started to work with Inspire the day after and actually I can say I saw many thingsby the programs (TCA/ MSR/ Saddle club /Star 25/ CIP Adults/ Admin). Every day things are different; I amgrateful. I really like being in contact with children, they make me happy and provide me more than the support I supposed to give them. You can see/feel their pain, distress, and happiness; observe the frustrationof the parents, the discouragement of some tutors. But honestly being with these children brings me a lot. I remember two children: one of them in crisis and the one who is very independent and doesn’t want anybody to tell him what he has to do. I was quiet strict with him one time and I thought he will hate me after that but the second day he saw me he just came and gave me a cuddle. When the first one had her crisis, I tried to support her but it was hard to calm / to containher. After this period, I thought she did not remember or recogniseme but she came to me and gave me a cuddle too. You will be always surprised when you are in their contact.

Maybe you are wondering about my background?I am a Psychologist and I also have a degree in Humanitarian Actionthat’s mainly why I decided to come to Malta, work with Inspire.  Not apply for a job directly was like a challenge but I don’t have any regret. Here with the other volunteerswe are a team and I feel like I found a second family which is just amazing! I wish, I hope the rest of the months will be wonderful!

Fatima, France

 

Malta is like a second home

 

Hello guys, my name is Luca Thieme and I’m from Germany. I have stayed in Malta for nearly one year now, I will finish at the end of August 2017.

First of all I would like to say “thank you“ to the German Red Cross Organisation, which gave me the great opportunity to be in Inspire. My second “thank you” is to all the workers and volunteers in Inspire: “All of you are doing a great job and I really appreciate what you are doing. It’s nice to be a part of your family.”

I had decided that instead of a year traveling without a purpose, I would go abroad as a volunteer and will do things with a view to helping others and grow myself personally. In the beginning I was a bit afraid to take a big step in moving to a new country with a different language and culture. Now after 9 months I can say it was one of the best decisions I ever made!

Malta is like a second home, the people are amazing. I meet a lot of new people from different countries, most of them were amazing. Some of them are really good friends now. We are the best example that multicultural groups can work. We are from Turkey, Austria, France, Netherlands, Slovakia, Hungary, Belgium, England, Spain, Ireland, Germany and I have some amazing Brazilian friends too. I apologize if I forgot someone 😉 I enjoyed every single minute in Malta and especially in my village Marsaskala.

Inspire is an organisation who helps people with disabilities. We have different programs for children and adults. We will work in fundraising events as well and it’s always nice if all of us are together, like the Vodafone Marathon Malta or the Happy Walk with Mc Donald’s. It’s a lovely community here and everybody keeps an eye open for people around us.

I have the pleasure to work in different programs like Adults, STAR, STEP early years/middle years or SOP.

I assist in different areas during the sessions: swimming pool, therapy with horses, MSR; TCA, organisation things or outings. So we will help clients to be as independent as much as possible. It’s such a good feeling when children or adults smile at you, because they appreciate that you are here. You will learn a lot about autism, down-syndrome or any disability. The children have teached me a plenty as well. You will reach your limits, you will get new skills and improve your old ones. I would say to everybody who is interested to work with people with disabilities: “Just do it and come to Malta. Don’t be afraid! They will take care of you.” It’s a nice island and especially the organisation Inspire. We are a family and everybody is accepted like she or he is. You will make new friends everywhere in the world and you will improve your english. Trust me, when I speak English my accent and pronunciation can be so funny sometimes, we laugh a lot about some mistakes and it’s never boring. Some of us are really good in English and some of us will improve a lot, but everybody is welcome and everybody will get support as much as possible.

I will never forget this incredible experience. Thank you to everyone who is a part of my life in Malta!

Cheers, Luca

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If you want check us out:

Homepage: https://inspire.org.mt

A amazing music video by the Travellers:

And a video about our different areas:

You did a Good job Elise. Your video is saying everything.