Interview with Gorka Ortega: VOLPA in Colombia

Question.-Introduce yourself, who are you, what's your profile?

Answer.-I am Gorka. I studied photography and audio visuals.

Q.-How did you arrive to Entreculturas?

A.-I came to Madrid two years ago through a job opportunity I saw in a magazine. I was always interested in the field of cooperation and seeing the end of my stage in Madrid I started to look for an alternative to do something in cooperation. I found the VOLPA Training Program in a web page and it interested me very much. I got in contact with you and I started.

Q.-How was the program? What did it mean to you?

A.-I started the training already two years ago. At the beginning I had my doubts because the training process lasted a year and I thought it was long, I couldn't quite understand it. Afterwards I realized that it was good for me personally. It served to secure well my beliefs and realize that it wasn't something I had chosen because I had nothing to do. I realized that I was sure about doing it. The international volunteering has been delayed one year because I had other engagements but now I am ready.



Q.-Where are you going? What are you going to do?

A.-I am going to Bogota to work with the Jesuit Refugee Service. I will be providing support to the Communication Department. The idea is to be there a year or two.

Q.-Did you know the Jesuit Refugee Service before?

A.-No. I got to know it through the training which is where they explain that Entreculturas has two counterparts; Fe y Alegría and the Jesuit Refugee Service.

Q.-Is this your first volunteer experience?

A.-In international volunteering, yes. In Madrid I was a volunteer in a foundation that works with homeless people.

Q.-How do you face this new challenge?

A.-I'm full of illusion. My first option was Africa, but as the situation in the continent is more complicated the projects didn't come. This project in Bogota came and they offered me the opportunity to go. I saw that the profile fitted what I was looking for, that it was a communication profile and as I didn't have a particular country in mind, the fact of not expecting and country has given it more value.

Q.-How do you approach living in Colombia?

A.-One must have respect of situations and not think oneself a super hero. I respect the socio-political context, and it is this special situation precisely what motivates me to go.