Enric decided to stay in Denmark
The Take 10 January 2020 team was caught in the turmoil of the global pandemic that hit all of us without a warning. The unexpected complications with the programme put each member of the team to up to a choice that was not easy to make – return to their home countries or stay in Denmark and find a way to continue their work until the programme resumes.
Enric (Spain) was one of the people who decided to stay and continue living in DRH Lindersvold. We talked to him about his preparation period experience, current situation, and hopes for the future.
What can you say about your preparation period?
My preparation period was based on the realization of different courses oriented to the political, social, and economic situation both at a global level and focused on the African continent reality. In addition, we also carried out different research related to poverty in developed countries, such as the homeless in Denmark or the ghettos, for example.
The most positive aspect for me was to have other comrades with whom we could exchange ideas, work, and opinions while also learning from each other’s views and experiences.
One aspect I would improve would be the updating of the data and statistics available as some of them might be outdated.
How did the sudden development with the COVID-19 crisis impact you and the development of your project?
The development of the COVID-19 made us face moments of uncertainty in terms of our close start to the project work in Africa. Eventually, we had to accept the suspension of the projects as well as the program for an uncertain amount of time.
Faced with this global situation, our team had to decide on a personal level whether to return to our home countries or to opt for volunteering in other institutions related to Lindersvold.
My decision was, from the beginning, to accept the situation that was happening and adapt. After talking to my family I was reassured my choice to stay in Denmark is the best option. I have been fortunate to be able to continue living in Lindersvold working in the kitchen and with other necessary tasks. I am happy to continue being linked to the institution and still believe in an autonomous lifestyle based on my principles.
What have you been doing after those changes had to happen?
As I said before, I decided to stay connected to the institution for the sake of the consistency with my lifestyle model. Other reasons for my choice are the security that Denmark represents and my desire to continue volunteering.
I feel very fortunate for the situation I am in. I appreciate the springtime environment we are living in, the different spaces of the school and I am happy to be able to continue participating in a common project in the day-to-day life of the school.
What do you hope will happen in the future and what are your plans once the crisis resolves?
I think that today it is complicated to think about the future. The most coherent thing to do is think, act and live day by day. I hope that this situation will serve to change the way we think about our models of life, about how we manage our time, about our freedom on a human level and on a political and social level as well.
In the future, I see myself continuing to grow as a person according to my principles and projecting my actions into humanitarian development. For this reason, the only future I see for myself involves the option of being able to integrate myself into any of the projects that Humana People to People continues to provide in Africa and India.
I hope that this situation will serve to change the way we think about our models of life, about how we manage our time, about our freedom on a human level and on a political and social level as well.
– Enric, January 2020 Team
Read more from the January 2020 team
“Making plans right now is really difficult. The project in Guinea Bissau seems only temporarily suspended but making long-term forecasts is very difficult and not very productive. We will have to wait and see.”
Back in her home town Granada, Cristina has had time to reflect: “The world is paralysed now. Maybe the projects are going to change and therefore we need to be ready for that and be resilient facing the difficulties.”
“It is high time we started to think about how to protect our planet. We need to rethink globalisation completely and not just go back to the pre-crisis production model with overproduction and overconsumption.”
“I started this programme to change my life. I am still in that process of exploration and change. I have no idea who I will be after this is over or how the project work overseas will affect me or my future.”
“Perhaps we will go to Africa but under different circumstances and conditions. We don’t know which country we will be able to go to, which type of project, and so on. We will just have to adjust to the situation.”