Wednesday, July 17, 2013

230. Pictures speak louder than words

A man from the village I use to live in while I was in Moldova has a blog I would like to share with you all.  It is SergiuCretu.wordpress.com.  Since it is all in Romanian it might be hard to understand, but this blog post titled Moldova, țara fără de părinți (Moldova, A Country Without Parents) has very powerful pictures.  The post discusses people (children, fathers, mothers, grandparents) who have a loved one(s) abroad.

Note:  This blog post was written in 2011.  While I will not translate the whole post, here is the caption for each of the photos:

  1. Three children living alone, their parents left in 2007 for Italy.
  2. This girl is solely taken care of by her grandmother.
  3. This girl is speaking with her mother on the phone who is in Italy and has been there since 2007.
  4. This 16 year old girl takes care of her 9 year old sister, their mother is in Italy and their father is in Russia.
  5. This is a first grade class in a village.
  6. A gym in the same school as the above photo.
  7. This boy has been living under his grandparent's care since 2004 when his mother left to work in Italy.
  8. Three daughters are taking care of their mother.
  9. A mother speaks via Skype with her husband and son who are in Moldova.
Many stories are difficult to hear and comprehend.  Adults have difficulty finding jobs, or at least jobs that pay very much and are stable, so many travel to other countries to make more money.  Three countries where many Moldovans work are Italy, Ukraine and Russia.  Italy because Romanian is very close to Italian, so it is easy to learn.  Ukraine and Russia because and most Moldovans and Ukrainians speak Russian as their first or second language.

It is true that some people leave for other countries and stop all communication with their loved ones, start new families and never return to Moldova.  But there are also good stories about people working for a few years, saving up money and returning to Moldova to live with their loved ones.  Others make a huge sacrifice by living abroad for a long period of time and sending the money that they save to support their family and parents.

Working abroad isn't always bad, but it can be.  Don't judge those that do, because sometimes it works out for the best or it could literally be their only option to survive.

Leia Mais…

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

229. Chisinau, I love you

This is a video shows what the Capitol of Moldova has to offer.  Take a few seconds to enjoy the view of Chisinau, Moldova!

Leia Mais…

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

228. My Village

This video is about the Moldovan village I lived in while I was in the Peace Corps.  The video was posed on YouTube in 2011, which is while I was in Moldova, but I do not know when it was filmed.  While I did not have much of a relationship with the man managing the community's wells, I have met him a few times.


Also, he does not pronounce the name of the village correctly.  It is spelled Antonești and pronounced "An-t-on-eh-sh-t".

Leia Mais…

Saturday, February 16, 2013

227. About Moldova

If you only had three minutes to learn about the Republic of Moldova, this would be a good video to start with:

Leia Mais…

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

226. Moldova on my mind

I thought this blog would end after I left Moldova, but Moldova keeps coming to my mind.  I try to stay up to date on what is going on in Moldova because I care about the country and its people.  I have a lot of good friends there that I hope to see again one day.

My host family hopes that I continue to write in this blog.  They said that they want to understand life in America and keep up with how and what I am doing.  So maybe I will continue to write...

A few days ago I found this ticket for the trolley in the capitol city Chisinau and I remembered all of the good times I had in that city.  This is a one time ticket that I paid about 17 US cents to purchase.

Leia Mais…

Saturday, December 15, 2012

225. Second English Camp

Playing a game to learn numbers
The summer of 2012 my organization helped plan our 2nd annual English camp.  We worked with a Germany organization, 9 volunteers from Canada and the US, and many volunteers from Moldova to hold a week-long camp for around 70 youth from the south eastern side of Moldova.

Auction using tickets that the campers have earned all week
 The mornings consisted of English classes, in the afternoons we played sports and did cultural projects (crafts, cooking, etc) and during the evenings we had different programming, speakers, music and movies.  It was a great event and there were a good number of return campers from the year before.

Water balloon volleyball
The camp was different in many ways from last year.  This year the Moldovan team took a lot more of the responsibility of planning events and the evening programs were more powerful and enjoyed more by the campers.  There were also some difficulties but I believe that things will continue to improve.



I hope that I will have time in the future to help with this camp.

Water balloons thanks to my mother's 4-H club

Leia Mais…

224. Swiss Visit

Swiss team member, community member, mayor, school sports director and
school director  planning for the fence around the soccer field

The largest project I undertook as a Peace Corps Volunteer is when a Swiss group came to Moldova to do outreach and community improvement projects.  A small group came in the early part of 2012 to find locations to do work in, between then and July I worked to plan the activities and events they would take part in.  In July the Swiss team,f 70 members strong, came to Moldova via train and they stayed for 10 days.  The split into about four locations all over Moldova and 20 stayed in my village.

Afternoon children's program
I worked with the mayor, Orthodox priest, Baptist pastor, local soup kitchen and the organization I work with to plan the schedule, activities, food and sleeping arrangements for the Swiss team that would be in my village.  It was a lot of work and stressful, but I had a lot of help from the people I work with, a fellow Peace Corps volunteer and the people of my village.


The team had three main work projects that they worked on in the morning included: pouring and placing sidewalks, constructing a wall on the soccer field and assisting elderly people around their homes in in their gardens.  During the afternoon the group would continue to work on those projects as well as run a children’s program for 6 to 14 year old.  The Swiss team worked with local youths 15 to 20 years old to plan and create games and programming for the afternoon children’s day camp.  They did a children’s camp for 5 days and the first day there were 20 children, but the last day there were around 120 children plus parents.



Halfway through the whole trip the entire Swiss team gathered together to switch the teams and share about their experiences.  They also invited Moldovans from my community, so some of the teens that have worked beside the Swiss group went on the weekend retreat.  There was singing and lots of food to try; it was very exciting for the Moldovans because they don’t always have a time or the money to do things like this.


While it was pretty stressful for me, it turned out to be a great 10 days.  I feel that they community really got something out of it.  A few people in the community were embarrassed that so many people came from Switzerland to help the elderly in Moldova; they hoped that this would wake up Moldovans to volunteer a little bit of their time to help their own community and the elderly in their community.

Leia Mais…

Saturday, August 25, 2012

223. Bittersweet

Yesterday I finished my Peace Corps service! It was a bittersweet moment. I left my Ohio home 809 days ago and found a home here. Durring my time in Moldova have experianced much happiness, considerable difficulties and have had an unforgettable experiance.
Moldova, imi va fi dor.   I have many stories to share that due to my very busy summer I have not had the chance too.  I hope that once things settle down I will post more stories.  I have also been asked to post about my life in America by my Moldovan friends, so maybe I will continue blogging.

Leia Mais…

Monday, August 13, 2012

222. Olympics


Me:  Did you know that Moldova now has two Olympic medals?
Host dad:  Yes.  How many does America have?
Me:  Uh, I think around fifty.
Host dad:  Well, just think, there are fifty states in the United States of America, most of them are larger than Moldova, but if each state won as many medals as Moldova the US should have at least 100 medals.

This conversation happened after the 4th of August.

Leia Mais…

Friday, July 6, 2012

221. Beer Tour

Due to a semi family member I got a behind-the-scenes tour of the Chisinau Beer Brewing facility.  This is the largest brewing facility in Moldova and they have contracts with many other country's beer companies.  It was very interesting.


But because of this tour I am now an "expert in fresh beer".

Leia Mais…