Smokinya Foundation Newsletter

Smokinya club


Since July the Smokinya Club is progressing and we are happy to have weekly meetings during the evening to share and invite the young people of the community to have a good time around fun activities.

Here is a brief plan of what will happen in December!

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Old staff, new staff

The last goodbye


After one year among us, Kalda, our Georgian volunteer, has finished her European Solidarity Corps program in Smokinya Foundation. Daily meetings, participation in international projects, training courses and above all, amazing people… We are sure that she will never forget these unique experience working together!

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Benvenuta in Bulgaria

Motivated after her several months working in Albania with Roma people, and thanks to her studies in Political Sciences and International Relations, besides her knowledge as volunteer of Red Cross organization, Valentina has decided to leave her native city of Perugia, one of the most beautiful regions of Italy, to join us and spent for a whole year. Let’s make a change together.

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The Spaniard

Graduated in History and European Studies and also rugby player for many years, David has said goodbye to their friends and relatives in Palencia, a small city located in the north of Spain, with the aim of learning more about social, political and economic European challenges and working for a more integrated EU, from the other side of the continent. We are sure that he will achieve it!

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From Russia, with love

Close to the border with Finland, there is a huge and wonderful city called “The Venice of the north”. We are talking about Saint Petersburg, where Masha, our Russian girl, used to lived until she decided to take the suitcases and come to Bulgaria as a volunteer. With a strong training in music, pedagogy, fitness and arts, she wants to discover other ways of life and feel the taste of an amazing experience abroad.

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Siberia: The last frontier

You do not need to go to the Artic to feel temperatures of minus 35º or admire the wild nature, just travel to Siberia, the true heart of Russia. There lives Igor, our courageous new volunteer that after finishing his Engineering studies and getting professional experience by working in an electro-station, decided that was time to take the step, come to the Balkans and help people in need through the ESC program.

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Hallo Österreich

After several years of hard study to become a social worker, Viki, the newest member of the Smokinya team, has made the decision to leave Austria, her homeland, to support us and the people in need in Plovdiv. Although she has only been with us for a few days, her motivation and joy have already helped us to work better together. Be prepared, her mind is full of new projects and ideas for the following months!

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Smokinya in the streets

BBQ gathering

Good food, hot drinks and above all, excellent company. What else could we ask for? Some weeks ago we organised a international BBQ with Bulgarian people and volunteers from other NGO’s from Sofia (some of them even from Caribbean!) and the result was amazing. Several hours of jokes, funny stories and personal development thanks to the willingness of knowing more about different cultures.

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Share your story

If you want to achieve something, then go and take what you need. That was exactly what we did in Smokinya Foundation when, in order to find out more about the cultural diversity present in Plovdiv, we agreed to take our microphones, cameras and coats and go out into the streets to record interviews with normal people. Pure social sciences.

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Meeting at the medical university

Smokinya would not exist without the help of or guest and followers, specially without the support of young people. For this reason, our volunteer team went to the University to spend some time in a meeting with students from the Faculty of Medicine, where we shared with them what we do, what we offer and how can they benefit of these opportunities. We will repeat!

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A clean bike park

No clean-up, no party. Everyone wants that when they children and no so children go to have fan in a park, they can enjoy without risk in a healthy environment. Because of this, Smokinya’s team decided to take bags and gloves and with a bit of motivation, our volunteers went to clean the entire Bike Park close to the Plovdiv Mall Center. Now it is fantastic for practising acrobatics!

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Training workshops

Digital skills

Fake news, online safety and privacy, data protection, how to look for the adequate information… These topics are now more relevant and necessary than never, so that is why form Smokinya we decided to organise an interesting public workshop focused on these subjects, specially on the use of Google Search. Now, our followers have no excuse to fail in the trap of hackers and spammers!

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Linguistic coffee

Not all the knowledge is located inside the books, people also need to socialise, to empathise with others in order to have a satisfying and happy life. Because of this, during this month we celebrated a Linguistic Coffee, an informal gathering at our office where our guest had the chance to practise their language skills in Russian, French, Italian, Spanish and English, meet new friends and of course, drink a coffee in good company.

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Professional opportunities in EU

The European Union is full of opportunities for everyone, particularly for young people. The problem is that they are quite unknown. For these reasons, in Smokinya we wanted to show how to work in the European institutions, bodies, and agencies through a workshop, and we did it. We talked about formal requirements, traineeships, current vacancies, permanent work and entrance exams, besides of some practical test examples. Now it only depends on you!

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Kinedok time

Movies, popcorn, hot drinks and friends… It sounds good, right? This is Kinedok, our cultural event designed to bring to young people films and stories from different countries about social, political and religious topics. An experience not only funny, but also perfect to rethink about the current values and challenges around the world.

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Media literacy

So good as be careful about fake news, is to be critical with the information that we receive from media; secondary political intentions can be hidden under the words. So what could be better than learn in dynamic group with international people how to understand the real meaning of news and information? That was what we did during our Media Literacy event in Jazz Caffe. Learning by enjoying!

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Roleplay learning experience

Are you interested in roleplay activities? Then you can not miss the event that from Smokinya we have prepared for the following weeks. It will be a little surprise for everyone, so you will have to attend to discover more about it! Anyway, we are not so bad so here you have a clue: Contemporary emergencies. Come and see!

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December is coming

Christmas decoration workshop

Winter is coming, and that means… Christmas time! In this Smokinya Club we will practise how to prepare our personal Christmas gifts and ornaments to have a super special detail with our dear relatives and friends next month. Something original, different and above all, low cost.

Linguistic coffee part II

Our last Linguistic Coffee was such a success, that many people told us to organise a new one. Not everyday we have the chance to put in practise our language skills with international people for free, right? Well, the petition of our supporters has been heard. Another Linguistic Coffee will take place on December, so prepare your agenda and make some space. This is for you!


Smokinya Christmas party

As every year, from Smokinya Foundation we want to express our gratitude to all our weekly guest, followers and partners for their fantastic help, support and care. This would not be possible without them! So we will prepare a Christmas gathering to say goodbye to this weird year, and celebrate together the upcoming of a new period full of exciting challenges, opportunities and new people. We await you.

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What are the experiences and successes of previous participants?
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