Elise and Mathys

Elise and Mathys from France joined ESC voluntarism program in Ioannina, at our organisation, Youth Center of Epirus. The project was coordinated and supported by the organisation EurasiaNet, based in France.


Their main activities were to implement recreational and non-formal educational activities for asylum seeker children and teenagers, and to work on digital content creation on asylum seeker integration related themes and cultural heritage of the region of Epirus. Below, you can read some of their testimonies and see photos of their experience in Ioannina! 


Hi! I’m Mathys, 19 years old, and I’m from La Rochelle in France. These 5 last months I had the chance to volunteer with the Youth Center of Epirus based in Ioannina. I already lived in another country for months but this stay clearly stepped out of the line and was above all my wishes.


I arrived in Greece in March under the snow and a pretty cold temperature but even with this I saw a lot of people outside in the streets, bars, and restaurants under some cozy plaids then I immediately felt comfortable in this city! Ioannina is a cute city, young and dynamic, even in the middle of the night!


For my part, the only thing that scared me a little bit before going there was the life in a shared flat but thanks to all the wondrous flatmates I had (special shout-out to Élise, my roommate who bore me for 5 months) it was only amazing times together. They were all supportive, the mood was the best I could imagine, and every time we had together was full of laughs, history telling, games, and basically good moments. Everything went so well that when I come back to France I’m gonna keep living in a colocation.


We also work with asylum seekers; we make activities with them, they are very nice, and our cultures are so different that we learn new things every day! The mood is really nice and I wish them all the best!


My content creation project for these months is a documentary I had the chance to imagine, realize, shoot, edit and publish with Élise! It is about the region of Epirus, through history from ancient Greece to modern times. We traveled a lot for doing this and it was the richest of all experiences!


This experience was enriching (for the very least I can say) also thanks to the Youth Center of Epirus, I really enjoyed working with them, from the activities with the asylum seekers to the documentary “The Other Greece” I realized with Élise. There is an amazing mood, always positive while still doing serious work.


I recommend this opportunity for sure to everybody who wants to step out of their comfort zone, discover new places, and new people, gain some experience, and travel!