“Many people experience that volunteering enriches others' lives and their own. With 'Don Bosco Volunteers' we are strengthening a significant bond between faith and social commitment in Europe," said Fr Petrus Obermüller SDB and Sister Maria Maul FMA, respectively Provincial of the Salesians of Don Bosco and Provincial of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians of Austria.
Through the European project "Time for young people", through the European Solidarity Corps, five volunteers are currently working in Don Bosco's structures in Austria. As volunteers they make an important contribution to society and the Church and make important personal, social, cultural and religious experiences during their service.
The 25-year-old Noemi, from Hungary, has been working for five months (and will continue to do so until June) in the "Don Bosco" schools in Vöcklabruck and has many contacts with the students: "I spend most of my time helping out at Caffè Mazzarello in the school. This is the heart of the school when it comes to sharing. I think it's really special. I am also delighted to be able to participate in the 'Confronto' meetings, where I meet active and motivated young people."
Furthermore, once a week Noemi goes with Sister Zäzilia Holzer, FMA, with the ludo-bus in the individual neighborhoods of the city, to let the children play: “Even without a good knowledge of German, we can understand each other well. At the same time we have fun. All children need a carefree time to play!"
And while learning the language, Noemi gives some English lessons and also helps in the care of the garden: “I really like it here. I am happy to have been so warmly welcomed in this beautiful country."
The "Don Bosco Volunteers" association is an institution recognized in the European Solidarity Corps and since September 2019 allows five European volunteers to spend ten months in the structures of the Salesian Family in Austria. Until March it will be possible to apply for a volunteering experience starting from September 2020.