A new EVS beginning


Now it’s time to take the relay from Ania and Max. We are Javi and Vanessa, the new volontiers and we hope our experience is as good as theirs last year.

Javi comes from Vigo in the north of Spain, he likes doing all kind of sports and is impatient to start the work at the klimbos. He also likes photography and finds this forest a perfect place for it.


Vanessa is from Germany, from the Black Forest (Schwarzwald) and already speaks french, spanish and english. Now she can’t wait to discover dutch, a language which seems to be very close to high german and other german dialects but nevertheless is very different and will totally be a challenge.


Although both of us had lots of information about this place before we came here, we have been very surprised about how big this place really is and how well everything works here. It’s very nice when you wake up and see all the forest out of your window, especially when the day is sunny.


Now we are here for more than three weeks and every day we feel a little bit more like at home. Everyone welcomes us so warmly and helps us with all kinds of problems. We didn’t only get from the staff of de Hoge Rielen all the necessary information about what is waiting here for us but we also met Ania, the previous volunteer who came back to see some friends. She told us about her experience, gave us many important and very necessary information about what we can do at the week-ends and even invited us to Antwerp, to meet up with her friends and other EVS who are in Belgium right now. Thank you Ania for sharing all your connections with us!

After such a good start at our new home for the next 9 month, we are enthousiastic to see what is coming. We’re looking forward to spend the year at de Hoge Rielen and to experience a new life in nature and a new country: it‘s cities, it‘s landscape, it‘s food, it‘s culture and of course it’s language!

Authors: Javi and Vanessa


It’s passing 8th month of my life in Belgium, time being also the longest period I’ve ever lived abroad. It’s definately enough time for noticing things characteristic for country and people living there, good as well as bad. But today I’ll focus on the best, 8 things I’ll miss after leaving Belgium and which make me finally thinking: ‘It may be not soo bad idea to stay here for longer…’.



When you enter a new environment, doesn’t matter if it’s a new work, group of friends, country or even if you randomly meet new people you have to be always ready for hail of questions… And at the beginning you are of course a bit confused with answering but with time you realize that when you answer you don’t only answer to somebody, but mainly to yourself. Today I’m going to share with you the answer for the most frequently asked question since I decided to become volunteer for almost one year. Why I made this decision? Continue reading “WHY AM I A VOLUNTEER?”


It’s been so long time since I wrote in our blog last time (I leave that honor usually to Ania because she is much inspired  then me to write) but today I decided that I had somethings to say.

I have to complain and make compliments  (the gripes are easier and not to serious !!!)…



As our EVS experience is slowly nearing to the half of time we had a possibility to participate in the EVS Mid Term Training last weekend. It was an event we were looking forward for a long time, especially because of possibility to meet other EVS volunteers from all around the Europe who also do their EVS in Belgium. What we learned? How we spent this time? What we gained? Answer below :)

Continue reading “EVS MID TERM TRAINING”