Last weekend, February 14th-16th, thirty of our volunteers gathered together in Náquera (Valencia) to receive the training they need to develop their social work and also to reflect on their own experiences as volunteers. The motto for the whole weekend was “Volunteers today because of Calasanz”. The intention of that slogan was to make them think about how our piarist identity affects their role as volunteers.

The meeting was full of activities, but the talks of our special guests were the high points of the weekend. We met Álvaro, who talked about his experience as an educator with teenagers. We also met Carlos, Santi, Maite and Conchi, who introduced us to other kinds of volunteering jobs. And we were also lucky to have Herman among us, who is in the process of becoming a Piarist Father and talked about his calling and his willingness to serve the children as Calasanz did.

There were other useful talks during the weekend: “How to organize a scavenger hunt”, “Fair trade and social habits of consumption” and “Pro-social skills development in a volunteer”. Moreover, the volunteers were offered a space of dialogue with the members of the local board and they were introduced to the different projects taking place right now at the Itaka-Escolapios Foundation of Valencia.

The weekend was also a time to enjoy and have fun together, like we did on Saturday night.

To sum up, it was a great weekend of training and shared experiences.