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Integration Foundation to support three camp projects for youngsters who speak languages other than Estonian


The Integration and Migration Foundation is to grant 20,533 euros in support of three Estonian language and culture camps for youngsters aged 7-18 who speak languages other than Estonian.

According to Jana Tondi, the area manager for language and cultural immersion at the Integration Foundation, the aim of organising the camps is to give young people who live in Estonia but whose mother tongue is a language other than Estonian the chance to speak the national language with native speakers their own age and to learn about Estonian culture and the environment around them together. “The programmes for this year’s camps are jam-packed and really exciting,” Tondi said. “There’s a good balance of physical activity – with sports competitions and hikes – and educational and creative stuff, plus excursions and workshops. There’ll also be contests and team activities – things like carnivals, fashion shows, singing, theatre, folk dancing, educational games and quizzes.”

An assessment committee decided that support for camps this year would be allocated to three organisations. The first is OÜ Valgemetsa Puhkeküla in southern Estonia, which will be hosting 40 Russian-speaking and 20 Estonian-speaking youngsters aged 7-16 for a six-day camp in the last week of June. This camp is primarily for school-age kids from Tartu and surrounding areas. The second organisation receiving support is Lastekaitse Liidu Lastelaaagrite OÜ, which this summer will be giving up to 1200 kids aged 7-14 the chance to take part in camps all over Estonia. The first group will come together at Remniku Learning and Recreation Centre in Ida-Viru County at the start of July. In total there will be five camps lasting up to eight days each.The third organisation is an NPO by the name of Fän Clab, which will be organising a camp for youngsters aged 7-18 at Lainela Recreation Centre in Käsmu.It is hoped to include 55 kids as part of the camp programme, 28 of whom do not have Estonian as their home language.

Katrin Pree, the coordinator of Valgemetsa Holiday Village in Põlva County, says they primarily based the programme for their camp on activities that would give the kids the chance to practise their language skills. “Events where they’re all working together are great for that, as well as group work and team events,” she said. “They’ll all be learning dances and games for the bonfire night, for example. So that the kids really feel included and get to know one another we’ll also be getting them singing together, and going hiking together, and on the final night we’ll all contribute to providing national dishes and snacks for the party buffet.”

The Integration Foundation will be providing a total of 20,553 euros in support of the projects.Information about the dates, venues and programmes of the camps can be found on the foundation’s website. The competition is being financed from the state budget via the Ministry of Culture.

For further information please contact:

Jana Tondi
Area manager for language and cultural immersion
Integration and Migration Foundation
Telephone: +372 659 9069