“I wouldn’t be here without all these small coincidences.”
Many of you I’m sure have realized that there has been a bit more of a European temperament at Green Light because we were able to welcome our first German volunteer, me-Eva-Maria.
I want to tell you guys my story about how I ended up in the Big Easy. Everything started about a year ago as the big question occurred: what to do with life after I finished high school? My main goal was to go away from home and not going straight to college. Many possibilities were buzzing around my head from work and travel to becoming an au pair, anything and everything was possible. But, then one of my friendliest and closest friends decided to do a social volunteer year and I thought I would also apply for that. For many programs you are required to go to a seminar class to test your eligibility. My first application seminar was during my school days and it helped, on one hand, to have the answer to the question about whether to do a service year or not, but on the other hand I spent so much time preparing for that, that I didn’t do very well on my school math test, but I still don’t regret going to that seminar.
After that seminar they told me that they would like to work together with me and I was close to flying to Scotland or Australia but I also applied for another organization named World Horizon. I thought I would be funny to just go to their seminar as well and get to know new people, just for fun because I already have a plan, or so I told myself. I took the train from the beautiful Bavaria to Frankfurt where the seminar took place. I was one hour late, which I only learned later, but I still was successful on the knowledge test that day. The people were great and we even had pizza for lunch – what could be better than awesome people and pizza? This day I questioned my life plan more and more and considered still going to the Philippines where I applied for in the beginning.
One presentation later and my life was totally upside down because I had heard about Green Light for the first time and I knew exactly that this was the thing I wanted to do. I think that sustainability is very important and our world is so beautiful and wonderful and we don’t know how much we harm it even by accident. Especially New Orleans is a place that experiences the impacts of climate change on a regular basis so it is so important that we do something about it. I hope, of course, that I also learn about myself and realize what is important in life and how to overcome difficult situations or challenges.
As I committed to NOLA I wasn’t aware of how many challenges this would be. The work and the mission of Green Light is powerful and I really want to help make people happy and try to prevent climate change at least a little bit. That is the main reason why I donated one year of my life to come here. Over the last three months I experienced how beautiful but also challenging it is to be in a country I don’t understand or know. It is great what I can do with Green Light and I wouldn’t have found my artsy side or wouldn’t have met my few but thoughtfully picked, wonderful friends here, although I miss my old friends and family more than everything else as well as bread and pretzels. But I am happy to be here and I am learning so unbelievably much about myself.
And the most surprising is – I wouldn’t be here without all these small coincidences.
A yodeled serves (a Bavarian word for hello/goodbye) to all my friends out there, we would be happy to welcome you at Green Light and our day would be brighter for it.