The idea of volunteering as we know it now, came to Russia in the 90-s. The first NGOs also started to appear at this period of time. At first, SFERA Movement was one of projects of Nizhny Novgorod Voluntary Service for 5 years, and was established as an independed NGO on the 6th of March, 2007.
The very first EVS project was organised by Nizhny Novgorod Voluntary Service was in Nizhny Novgorod in 2008. Since then we were spreading our network of project all over Russia. Now there are more than 10 projects in Nizhny Novgorod, Kirov, Saint-Petersburg, Petrazavodsk and Vladimir. Anually we coordinate around 20 volunteers.
Reasons to come for EVS in Russia?
1. Absolutely different country and people you have ever met
"Russia just stole both my mind and heart. It's a country you can't really understand. You can just feel the Russian way of life and thinking and fell in love with its uncomprehensibility." - Diana Matugova, ex-evs volunteer in Nizhny Novgorod.
2. So much undiscovered destination for travelling
You will have a lot of time to discover the biggest country in the world. Usually our volunteers go to Baikal, Siberia or Vladivostok in summer holidays. They travel 7000 km by hitchiking or by train. Incredible experience!
Michela travelled with her friend to Vladivostok by train (7 days in a train!!!) making stops in a
big cities of the East.
3. Many free workcamps
Tired of routine? Change it!
You are able to go for workcamp orginized by Sfera all over Russia for free.
Ilaria participated in a workcamp with children as a leader on the Black sea.
4. New family
Many common travel, fun, parties, work, discoveries and meetings will make people around you more than just friends.
"And believe me, Russians are the most cordial people I've ever met! If they once let you in your
life, you feel that you'll stay there forever." Diana Matugova
5. Russian lessons included
Don't be afraid of not speaking Russian. We orginize Russian lessons, splitting volunteers in different group according to language level.
Some volunteers come to EVS project without speaking a word in Russia but leaving with fluent knowledge.
6. Platform for your own projects
If you have a great idea why not to do it? We always support fascinating ideas (also in financial aspect).
I thought that it would be even more interesting show those pics to a Russian public,
so I decided to organise a photo-exhibition in Nizhny Novgorod with this theme
"Russian through the eyes of the foreigners". Ilaria Romualdi
7. Friendly coordinators
In each city there is a super friendly and supportive coordinator.
An evaluation meeting between volunteers and coordinator Aleksandr on the motor ship.
8. Be ready to become a celebrity
There are not so many foreigners in Russia. So people from abroad are very popular. Our volunteers are always participating in local events, giving interwievs to magazines and tv-shows.
Our volunteer Christian Richard Jones is given a present by local company for his project.
9. A year for understanding yourself
Open yourself from new side.
Ilaria Romualdi on Baikal lake during summer holiday.
10. And the last: hundreds people will say thank you just that you come...
In case of any questions please contact: