Hey there! Meet Emma, a 23-year-old who took a chance on COSI’s EPVP 4.1 program in Bucharest, Romania. Living abroad for seven months seemed daunting, but Emma dove in and discovered a world of personal and professional growth.

Buna ziua! I’m Emma, 23 years old, and for the past seven months, I lived and volunteered in Bucharest, Romania, as part of COSI’s (Civic Orientation and Social Integration) EPVP 4.1 program.

Before diving into this adventure, the idea of being abroad for seven months seemed both exciting and a bit scary. I had no experience living in a foreign country or sharing a house with people other than family. The thought of living with people from completely different backgrounds made me kind of nervous. However, there was this inner voice pushing me to give it a try, so I went for it. Looking back, I can say without a doubt that time really flies when you’re surrounded by awesome people, doing interesting work, exploring new cultures, and having time for self-development.

During my time with COSI, I learned a bunch of stuff that helped me grow personally and professionally. We organised two Erasmus+ TCs, ran monthly awareness campaigns based on the UN calendar, and did things that really made a difference, like organising two humanitarian aid donations for kids in need. We also held workshops about youth mobility opportunities in school and youth center and so much more. I’m really happy with our work. Most importantly, I gained a better understanding of Erasmus+ projects, EYE, ESC, and humanitarian aid. It was eye-opening to see how these projects work and the opportunities they bring.

As someone who loves meeting people from different cultures, it was the perfect place for me. We were 8 volunteers from Armenia, Moldova, France, Italy, Azerbaijan, and Finland. But we also met people from many other countries as well. I made friends from all over the world, learned about their traditions, and got to know more about their countries and languages. Cool thing is to see similarities and differences between cultures and people.
It’s important to have people around you who are inspiring, supportive, and there for you. I’m happy that I met them. These people are forever in my heart!

The ESC program also gave me the chance to travel around. I explored various cities in Romania and even went beyond its borders to Moldova, Cyprus, and Bulgaria. Our world is full of wonders, and it’s cool to have the chance to explore it.

I remember during the pre-departure training, Irina mentioned that this would be a life-changing experience. Now, looking back, I can say she was absolutely right. I feel more in touch with myself, more at peace, and just a bit different, maybe a bit better version of myself.
Huge thanks to the people who make experiences like this possible for people like me!

I’m sharing this success story in the hope that it might inspire you, the reader, to consider applying for a project like this and start on an amazing journey. My own adventure began with inspiration from others’ stories, and I want to keep this beautiful cycle going.


Lots of love,