I leave this coming September (2016), and will be spending one month doing unpaid volunteering at a kennels in Teglio on the Italy-Switzerland border. After that, I will be travelling down to San Godenzo near Florence, and (unpaid) volunteering on a vegetable/olive garden for a month and a half. Following this will be a month and a half in the North of Sardinia, (unpaid) volunteering on an organic farmstay. Further farmstays and vineyards have yet to be arranged for definite, but I will spend the three months or so after that at various other unpaid volunteering sites. Greece will come after that, either volunteering on other farmstays or getting a full-time bar job, depending on the offers I may or may not get from the farmstays. I may later choose to permanently relocate to, or study at university, in Italy.
The short of it is that I can't bear to be stuck in a day-to-day wake up, work, eat, sleep routine, and I want to find the little joys in life and live for them.
The £3000 would cover: Food And Supplies, Accommodation, Luggage and Equipment, Airfare, Local Travel Expenses, Medical/Travel/Accident Insurance, for the first six or so months. At which point, I hope to get a paid evening job and settle down in Italy permanently - although on the off-chance I get lots of donations, money raised past the £3000 point will ensure I have a bit of a safety net in case I can't get a job straight away or choose to continue volunteering.
All pledged money, bar flight costs, will be going straight into a savings account which I can't touch until I leave in September.
The long of it is as follows:
My love of Italy began when I was a very young girl, when my late grandfather, who was stationed there during the war, told me stories of his adventures there during WWII and in the years that followed, when he visited again and again with his late wife of forty years. I adore learning about Greek History, and incorperating its mythology and tales into my own writing. The cultures and communities of both Greece and Italy mesmirize me. I've visited Athens, Rome, and Venice, and nearby smaller towns/villages of each city, so far.
I'm going to travel for the sheer joy of it, but also to volunteer, write, and film. As an author, I want to get at least one full novel completed whilst there, be it of my usual fantasy, or even a travel book describing each tiny mishap and every meandering tale. I also wish to film a couple of short films, the details of which have yet to be finalised, and create an endless stream of Italian and Greek photography art. Of course, I would be writing a blog (link to which will be provided shortly) the entire time, too, giving tips for people looking to travel in the future, and just generally sharing stories of the countries. I want to seek out the hidden awesome of each place I visit, the little perks and parts of the country or city which make you fall in love with the place over and over again.
Any donation at all is so very welcome. I would be eternally grateful to anybody willing to contribute to the cost of the trip (which promises to be expensive, sigh), and would be only too happy to send you postcards and photographs of the trip whilst I'm there! For anybody who wishes to donate a larger sum, I'd be willing to video chat whilst there with you, so that you, too, could experience the breath-taking journey. I'd also be happy to offer advance readings for any novels I write whilst travelling, and advance showings of the short films.
I have no idea if I've convinced you to help or not, but, if I have, then thank you, and good luck in life!