The story of Roy from Syria


I was at OCC Polykastro in Greece for two and a half years. They asked me if I wanted to be a volunteer with them, so I said yes, why not? I was very active there and I participated in a lot of things. I organised the football, the classes, I stayed with people and helped them with important things like translation and I taught them how to take out money from the bank and go to the pharmacy or Western Union. I even had a cafeteria nursery school where I spent a lot of time to check if anyone needed any help. I learnt many things at OCC Greece, but one of the most important things I learnt was English, and it is all thanks to them. I met a lot of people from many countries and of different nationalities, and I was extremely happy and comfortable. I still love OCC Greece and it has a very special place in my heart.


One day, the founder of OCC, Didac, came to Greece and he asked me if I wanted to be a volunteer at OCC Barcelona. Of course I said yes; Didac was already there and he took me to Barcelona with him. For me it’s a new life with a new language and new people. I started learning Spanish and teaching Arabic with my fellow volunteer, Mouaz. Sometimes I teach with him and other times I watch and learn from him. I even started having my own Arabic students- two from Spain and one from France. In my Arabic class, I teach them important words such as numbers, the days, food and I enjoy it so much.

I live with five people, including Mouaz and Sara who were with me in Greece. Altogether, I live with two people from Syria, one from Iraq, one from Afghanistan and one from Cyprus.


Now due to the coronavirus, I teach online. I also spend my time studying Spanish with my colleague, Leidy, and sometimes I learn through YouTube. In addition, today I learnt how to use Google Docs to write this article. Despite being in quarantine, I am really happy that I can stay at home with my roommates, having a good time and making funny videos; but one of my favourite things to do in my free time is to cook, especially sweets. I was a chef in Syria, however, unfortunately, due to the situation there I had to leave everything behind, but I still use my cooking skills to make amazing Syrian food for those around me. I’m really happy that I work at OCC with so many international people. As a team, we sometimes have lunch and dinner which I sometimes prepare, and it is great when we are all together. I feel so grateful to have so many people who love me, help me and take care of me. I hope we can always be friends and maybe in the future we can meet and work together again.