Ice cream, google translator and EU projects - Catarina's experience in Elblag

Hello, Olá, Cześć!

My name is Catarina Rodrigues, I am a Portuguese girl from the North that has study International Relations and who is currently surviving the South Baltic Region. Right now, I volunteer for the Association of Polish Communes Euro region Baltic in Elblag, Poland, a small city where I can always find something to do, even if it’s just eating ice cream.

Before coming here, I was looking for something to do, but I didn’t have that much luck until I received an email from the Interreg Volunteer Youth asking if I would like to join this team and it’s quite easy to guess my answer.

I volunteer for 2 different projects, the main one is FilmNet where we promote the South Baltic Sea identity through movies, and the other one is CTCC, which stands for Creative Traditional Companies Cooperation and where we promote small companies to strengthening international activeness and innovation capacity of the South Baltic blue and green economy.

Compared to where I live, Elblag is really a small city quite near to the sea and with a lot of wild life. As a cosmopolitan that I am, this was quite of a change to get used to and I like it more than what I thought that I would. There’s quite a lot of history surrounding this place, quite sad since this city was almost destroyed during the 19th century and World War II. Most of the buildings that we see now that look old are in fact reconstructions of how it used look before. Still, worth to see either you are a history lover or a nature adventurer or if you just want to have a nice ice cream scoop.

As a volunteer in this association, I am finding out more of how it is to work with EU projects, how they are directed, how they are formed and discussed between the partners and also the struggles that can appear in just translating documents from Polish to English with Google translate (please people, don’t do it if you like well conjugated sentences with proper grammar, otherwise you will end up frustrated and wondering how a machine is so bad at translating; and I am saying this as someone that still struggles to pronounce the letter “h” in English since in Portuguese it’s a mute letter).

But I love this experience, since I have always wanted to engage within the frame of territorial cooperation and to put in practice my knowledge in European Union Policies. Not only that, I am getting in touch with wonderful people, both from my office as well as from our association partners.

Can’t wait to see what awaits me in this adventure. So, see you guys soon!

Catarina

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