I am Luca Occhialini, I am a 28 years old Italian guy and currently, I am a volunteer in the camping “Le Belvédère” in Lastours, France.
The reasons why I decided to join this volunteering project are many, most of them quite common and easy to understand. My field of study is essentially based on the understanding of the International world, and all the topics that constitute it. Among them, the topic that I feel closest to the person that I am is the environmental and climate issues, as well as the problem concerning sustainability. At the same time, along with the process of me understanding myself, started some years ago, now I am moved from a deep desire to improve my skills in general, in particular the ones regarding foreign languages. Here I also had the opportunity to practice and improve my French, so it was a good option under this perspective as well.
Finally, I was interested in joining a volunteering project, something that you do because you are moved from the desire to give your help, instead of following more materialistic aims, for which there will be time.
This is my story, or at least half of it. The second part goes a little bit deeper. One thing that is fundamental in my life, which is basically the way that I decided to spend my time on this planet, is to keep improving myself, always and no matter what. From a professional perspective, this is clear, but especially from a personal side. Are those really disconnected from one another? In my opinion, they are not, but I feel like it’s important to make the distinction, in a world where people are always more focused on having success in their careers than in their lives.
I want to keep improving the person that I am, always, at any stage of my life. How can I do it? Learning each and every small lesson that I am lucky enough to see and experience in the process of life, but also dealing with people, enlarging my knowledge about different world situations and cultures, listening to stories directly from the ones that are involved in them, and every context, big or small, where I can learn something new.
So yeah, it’s important to gain competencies to find our personal dream job (if this is what we really want), but I do not want to forget what follows: to me, what is truly important is to work on myself through the process of searching, so to become the better version of what I can be on this planet, in the life that I am lucky enough to have. That’s basically who I am, and the main reasons why I joined this project, as well as the thoughts that move me every time I decide to change something in my life and/or to travel somewhere else.
I think it is time now to go a little deeper on the technical and more realistic side of my period of permanence here, in the camping.
From the day that I arrived until now, I had many tasks, thanks to which I got in touch with the situation of the camping quite fast, I believe. I watered the garden almost on a daily basis, also joining Nacho here and there to take care of it from a general perspective, like planting new seeds. In the last month and a half, I took care and fed the animals, especially the chickens, ponies, and donkeys (not the pigs so far, but it is something that I would be interested in doing as well). Sometimes I am asked to work in the reception, which is something that I am happy to do: being a new type of job for me, something that I never did before, I know that I can learn new competencies, and I also have the chance to speak French with the clients that come and go from the camping. Other than that, I joined duties on a daily basis with the other volunteers, like cleaning the common spaces, cooking, taking out the trash, and all the rest. In addition, I took part in the last two projects of youth exchange with general daily tasks, organizing the spaces for them and any other task required from the situation.
What do I want to do next? I am available and eager to do any kind of activity. I am here to learn and improve myself, and every moment that I spend doing something, any kind of something, is simultaneously a moment when I am learning. I know that I can give my contribution in every situation, so I am open to any activity that we will have to deal with here until the end of my period. Specifically, at the moment, I would like to join Bibie in her work at school, when and if needed. Being a new place for me, I feel like I can learn many other different things. This is why I think it would be a great opportunity for me, so that I can keep walking on this path of personal growth that I am walking on.