Phiren Amenca

“An opportunity to to engage with Roma Rights on a European level”

My name is Lolo; I come from the county of Shropshire in the UK, living in a small village in a rural area of the West Midlands.  I am currently undergoing an eight month placement with Phiren Amenca via the ESC (European Solidarity Corps) volunteering program. Prior to this I was studying my Second Year of International Relations and Politics Degree at University of Chester, and working as an activist of GRT (Gypsy Roma Traveller) Rights across the UK and wider Europe. I am a co-founder of Traveller Pride, an LGBT+ GRT lead campaign group offering support and friendship to LGBT+ members of our community, and co-founder of The Dikhlo Collective, which provides parcels of cultural items to GRT people across the globe at no cost.

I’m an artistic young person and enjoy writing and/or performing poetry, singing, playing piano, and dancing. I’m very excited about this opportunity to grow as a person and develop my skills as an activist to further work in the context of Roma Rights career-wise. I wanted to take part in this volunteering opportunity to learn more about the functions of an NGO, and gain knowledge of a practical working environment. I think it’s important as a young person to understand how organizations work, to be able to apply this to my own future career aims and working life as a Romani activist. Finally, one of my biggest motivations for undergoing this placement was the opportunity to engage with Roma Rights on a European level, taking a personal leap in making the decision to go abroad and experience a country different to my own.