„Ecomission 21th century“ is an NGO in Lovech that focuses on working with young people to improve their environment. Over the years, short-term and long-term activities are carried out involving young people from the city and the surrounding area. During my years of volunteering, projects have been implemented in Greece, Romania and Bulgaria, but the organization's key activity is at a local level, where it is a unique place gathering youngsters with a spirit and desire for change. From working with kindergartens, through home care and cleaning parks and alleys, the volunteers of Ecomission and the European Voluntary Service make Lovech a better place to live. Some of their activities are:
Summer activities organized outdoors and in the organization‘s building.
Every summer, children's camps and workshops are organized in which all children learn new things and have fun with their peers.
Save the kids on the road!
Every year, campaigns are conducted with local law enforcement to reduce student accidents. Flyers are distributed to drivers passing by schools on 15.09. and are advised on safer driving. The youngsters talk to police officers and discuss possible improvements in driving conditions together.
The volunteers of Ecomission 21th century are given the opportunity to ask their questions and voice their opinions to the local government, thus giving publicity to the needs of their peers. Thanks to such meetings, as well as the Mayor for a Day campaign, the youth of the city are immersed in the work of the governors and better understand their daily obstacles.
EVS volunteers actively participate with the help of the Bulgarian volunteers of Ecomission. Each EVS volunteer can come up with ideas and take initiatives with students, children in kindergartens, children in orphanages and etc. Depending on the experience of each volunteer, workshops and discussions are organized for the children, mainly concerned with the protection and improvement of the environment, informing them of problems and solutions.
Meetings are held with students from all high schools in the city, including debates on a variety of topics that are important to them - career guidance, emigration and many more. In addition to the young people, these conversations also allow volunteers to practice their public speaking and improve their reasoning skills.
Meetings are also held with children from at-risk backgrounds to support their integration and improve their learning opportunities. The problems that children face and the differences in cultural and social aspects are discussed, as well as many common features of all people.
For their contribution, the Ecomission volunteers receive honors from the Knight of Goodwill (NARD), Volunteer of the Year, and more. Thanks to their work with children and other risk groups, part of the volunteers are professionally starting work as social workers, psychologists and coordinators of their own organizations.
In addition to young people, the Ecomission works with local orphanages, turning holidays into memorable experience for the residents. Volunteers prepare food, cards and gifts to please people and spend time with them to diversify their daily lives.
by Pepa Garkova
TC Y.W.4.H.R. in Tropea, Italy