14.10.21

Meet our new 2021-2022 ESC volunteers!

Our new European Solidarity Corps (ESC) volunteers joined us in Galway at the end of August. We wanted to share a little bit about our new volunteers and help everyone get to know these wonderful new people living in Galway.

The European Solidarity Corps programme supports young people aged 18-30 to be full-time volunteers in many foreign countries, and this year our volunteers are From Spain, Italy and Slovenia.

Get to know Nastja

What city are you from?
First, I would like to explain to you some important facts. I am from Slovenia, not Slovakia. That is the common mistake. There are some differences between them, but Slovenia has a special word – Slovenia - inside of it. I am from the country where there is a lot of love. Slovenia has borders with Austria, Italy, Croatia, and Hungary. We are a small country - you can travel from the eastern point (for example, Lendava) to the western point (for example, Nova Gorica) of the country in around 3 hours on a highway. Around 2 million people live in my country – compared to Ireland, its about 3.5x smaller. We are almost like a rare species!

I am from a small village of the Municipality of Radenci, where there is beautiful landscapes with hills and amazing sunrises and sunsets. The country of Slovenia is shaped like a running chicken, and I am from the neck of the chicken. I can get to Austria by car in 10-15 minutes.

What were you doing before you came to Galway to volunteer at GCC? Or what is your circus/arts background?
Circus as a method came to my life in 2016, when I was a participant of Erasmus training called “Circus Pedagogy as a Tool for Youth Workers” in Finland. I was so taken over from that experience, especially from poi spinning. After that my interest in circus methodology continued to grow. I learned a lot of circus knowledge from different workshops abroad, Erasmus trainings, and from different people. At the end I was also part of the Cirkus Fuskabo in Slovenia. I was studying geography and pedagogy, so my passion is to work with and for the people.

What will you be doing this year at Galway Community Circus?

I will be teaching some toddler, family, flea and junior circus classes. I will be the Environmental Officer so I will be paying attention to reduce GCC’s environmental impact and from time to time I will be taking photos of special events. Maybe I will catch your expression of excitement with my camera!

What are you looking forward to learning while volunteering at Galway Community Circus?
The atmosphere here is very nice. I feel like I am at home. Every time when I am at the Circus, I am like a sponge … absorbing every moment, every smile, every circus trick, and then saving it to my heart and head. I would like to gain more circus knowledge and improve my English. I’m very excited and looking forward to the next few months!

Get to know Laura S.

What city are you from?
I’m from Villa Verucchio, a small city near Rimini – Italy.

What were you doing before you came to Galway to volunteer at GCC? Or what is your circus/arts background?
After I graduated in art history, I worked for a few years in the production office of an Italian festival dedicated to contemporary performing arts. In particular, I worked as Organizational Secretary, collaborating with the team in the realization of the annual programming of the Association and the summer festival.

What will you be doing this year at Galway Community Circus?
My role will be to volunteer as an Arts Administration Assistant. My role will be to support the production of Galway Community Circus’ events and projects. This will include many events in the GCC annual programme such as Youth Circus shows and other events. Plus, I will support the Digital Engagement Officer with the annual communication plan for the ESC project at GCC.

What are you looking forward to learning while volunteering at Galway Community Circus?
I hope to improve my working skills in an international context. I feel I still have lot to learn and this project, covering different aspects, would give me the chance to improve in the arts and live performance sectors. Moreover, I am really thrilled about the idea of discovering Ireland and its culture!

Get to know Ines

What city are you from?
I'm from Valencia, Spain

What were you doing before you came to Galway to volunteer at GCC? Or what is your circus/arts background?

I have been studying music and arts all throughout my life and recently, I have put my energy into the circus arts and pedagogy. I started 4 years ago at the Lido (France) as a beginner juggling student and since then my interest and my creativity is still growing. Later, I was volunteering at Circus Cabuwazi in Berlin but it was difficult due to Covid-19 restrictions. Also, I have participated in different clown workshops and I would like to keep on exploring.

What will you be doing this year at Galway Community Circus?
I will be a tutor assistant this year at GCC!

What are you looking forward to learning while volunteering at Galway Community Circus?

I would like to continue developing my pedagogical approaches in social circus, as well as my performance skills. I also would like to get more experience and develop my coordination and administration skills with the aim of creating Erasmus+ projects to promote, through international co-operation, the development of organisations working in the field of social circus.

Get to know Laura M.

What city are you from?
I grew up in Viladecavalls, a tiny village on the foothills of Montserrat mountain range, very close to Barcelona.

What were you doing before you came to Galway to volunteer at GCC? Or what is your circus/arts background?

I was working as a non-formal educator, focused on outdoor and mountain activities. I used to practice slacklining as a hobby to improve my physical and emotional balance and as a method to improve focus and to overcome fear and self-doubt.

What will you be doing this year at Galway Community Circus?
I will try to bring my personal spark and a broad gender consciousness when assisting tutors in teaching circus skills and supporting participants in their learning process. I will also contribute to make the Youth Forum happen.

What are you looking forward to learning while volunteering at Galway Community Circus?
I look forward to making new circus friends, cross the Corrib River walking on a tight wire, and learn from the art of teaching and from every interaction with all the amazing people that make up the GCC team!

GCC's European Solidary Corps programme is supported by Erasmus+ and Leargas.