By: Angel Dimitrievski – Skopje, Macedonia and EEC Member
It has been exactly five year since I joined PTPI. It all started with attending a recruitment presentation in a local NGO in my hometown. A group of young people just returned from the European Youth Forum in Berlin, and were giving us an insight about their unforgettable experience.
I decided to join as a member in the Skopje Student Chapter. At first for me it was a great challenge to get involved in the many activities we hosted at the chapter. I was really introverted and my comfort zone was probably somewhere at home, spending time not among so many other unknown people. As time passed, I explored the beautiful minds the people in PTPI had, and my comfort zone moved from my home to being with my fellow PTPI friends. A year passed by and I got the chance to attend the next European Youth Forum in Berlin. Then I was the one who was recruiting new members with my story from this experience. The energy in PTPI connected us, made us friends and provoked us to do something for the community. We could not stay passive to the injustices we saw on daily basis.
Another important moment in this organisation is that if you want to get involved, you have an open space for progress. In my student chapter in Skopje in only one and a half year I progressed from being a member, to PR for the chapter and then the chapter president. Probably one of the most important turn of events in life for me, was that PTPI changed what I wanted to study and work at in my future. At the time while I was in high school studying medicine. Even though my parents were very enthusiastic for me to study medicine at university, I secretly applied for a scholarship with the PR and Communication department, and won the competition with an essay about my volunteering life in PTPI.
In 2013, I attended my first European Conference, a wonderful event where I got the opportunity to meet people from all over the world. Since then, every other conference has been a real party. We dance until we forget all of our problems, we talk about our common complications we have in our countries, we are united by our similarities and we respect our differences.
After my high school graduation in Skopje, I could only continue being a PTPI member as an Alumni student. I wanted more! So, I opened a Community Chapter in Skopje. I gathered the 10 most enthusiastic people I was working with and we made it happen! It makes me shiver when I think of the great moments I had with this chapter. Of course, at first it was not easy. Starting university, exams, having a certain medical condition in the period, did not stop me to DREAM BIG. Because, that’s what we do at PTPI. During the next three years, being the president of my chapter, I saw people reliving the same path of life I had while I was a high school student. They found themselves, they fell in love with their PTPI friends, we shared happiness, we shared sadness; together. We became one big family.
Last year, I was elected to be the Regional Youth Coordinator of PTPI Europe. Another point that shows that PTPI is an organisation that wants to hear the voice of young people. For this I need your help. I need our energy bubbling to show the world that we are proud to be young, and most importantly proud to be young PTPI members. The world is becoming a place of distrust, conflicts, confrontations and insecurity, but in that same world we are the hope, the burning fire that can make a change. So, please, let us DREAM BIG and make this world a place where happy people live.