Victoria Sweeney, Reutlingen, Germany




I have now been in Germany for about two and a half weeks, and it as been such an experience. My first two weeks I volunteered at a children’s camp, Burzelbach, and it was nothing that I was expecting. About 140 children ages 7-11 attend and it is set up as a fake city. Children arrive and they are placed in an “apartment” with others where they will eat breakfast, lunch, and have a snack in. Each child picks a job for the day. For example, they could work in the Bank, Café, wood shop, newspaper, cosmetic studio, Police station, etc. There were roughly around 20 different jobs to choose from. After you work, you would then go to the bank to get paid (taxes come out of the paycheck also!). The money can then be used to buy things within the “city” at any of the places the children work. Oh! They also have to pay rent in their apartment! These are young children learning how to manage their money and survive in the a life like situation! There are also different performances throughout the two weeks. The dance group will put on a show, the theater group will put on a play, the band will play and things like that. There is a big event the first week, the Olympics. Each “apartment” participates in different events and then there is a bronze, silver, and gold winner of Burzelbach. One of the events is that each group has to come up with a special performance. My group, WG Weiß, decided to build a human pyramid and then perform a rap song. The song was, obviously, in German. When practicing the song one of the children came up to me asking if I could write an English verse for them to sing. I felt so special! At the end of the day it was announced that my group won the Olympics! When it was announced all the kids looked at me and shouted “AMERICA!” 🙂 Another day there was a talent show that anyone could sign up for. A few of the children convinced two of the girls from England and I to sign up and perform the Cup Song from the movie Pitch Perfect. The leaders of the camp approached us after the show and asked us to perform at the “Stadtfest” (City Festival) the next day where all the parents and the Mayor of Reutlingen would be attending. So, the next day at the festival, the Mayor of Reutlingen introduced the international kids and we performed…stressful? Yes. Fun? Absolutely. Below is a picture of my group, WG Weiß and the beautiful view that I had everyday going to camp. 



After the camp I moved to Hochschule Reutlingen (Reutlingen University). I am currently taking a pre-semester German Language course with a bunch of the other international kids. It has been amazing meeting so many people from all over the world and becoming close with them. I can’t wait to see where the rest of the semester has waiting!

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  • Johanna t  On September 11, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    Great story! And great pictures!!!! ESP the first one!!! 🙂 wink!

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