PROJECT: The Awareness, Engagement & Action project is part of a series of camps organised by SEEDS in cooperation with different partners, where we try to raise awareness about current environmental issues and encourage the volunteers to take action! One of our main goals for the next few years is to contribute to a nation-wide project aiming at cleaning up the Icelandic coastline.
SEEDS works with and supports the Icelandic ministry for Environment and Natural Resources, the Icelandic Environmental organisation Landvernd, the Environmental Agency of Iceland, Umhverfisstofnun and other partners in order to draw attention to the issues of ocean pollution, plastic waste and to engage volunteers in cleaning up actions around the country.
This camp allows volunteers to learn about global and local environmental issues through non-formal activities such as workshops, discussions, presentations and visits, as well as to contribute directly to environment protection by joining outdoor coastal cleanup tasks.
Volunteers will be cleaning up the shores and beaches. Additional work will be undertaken in the area of our accommodation as removing old fences dangerous to wildlife and visitors. We may also be marking some walking paths and, depending on the advance of the mentioned tasks, volunteers might do some forestry tasks in a small forest planted in the area or support in the renovation and maintenance of the house.
This camp combines learning, sharing, hands-on work and fun. No previous experience is needed. Volunteers should prepare to share environmental issues from their countries and be ready to spend time outdoors, walking during the cleanups. Volunteers should be ready to adapt and be flexible with the work and free-time schedule, as depending on the weather, we may not be able to perform some of the activities (as) planned.
ACCOMMODATION: This project gives SEEDS volunteers the opportunity to live in an old farm which has been transformed into an environmental-education centre. The facilities are basic with a kitchen, shower, and a washing machine. Volunteers will sleep in shared rooms or dormitories. Please bring your own sleeping bag.
Volunteers will receive food supplies and will be in charge of cooking and cleaning. Please note the food SEEDS provides will be vegetarian. Remember to bring some traditional/typical food, drinks, recipes, music, games or movies from your country for the intercultural evening. Please be aware some items or ingredients may be expensive in Iceland and you will need to buy them yourselves or bring them from your country.
LOCATION: We will stay in an old farmhouse, Alviðra, 1 hour drive south-east from Reykjavík. The house serves as an environmental-educational centre where visitors can have a look at an extensive stone and stuffed animal collection. The house sits under Ingólfsfjall, The Mountain of Ingólfur, with a view to Eyjafjallajökull where the volcanic eruptions started in March and April 2010.
The place is registered as natural Icelandic heritage; the nature, vegetation and birdlife is rich in variety and quantity. The volunteers can enjoy outdoor activities in a peaceful and beautiful location with a small stream and a pond nearby. Hiking trails with maps about cultural heritage can be found spread around the area, which is a popular attraction among foreign and local visitors.
The nearest town, Selfoss, only 10 minutes-drive away with 6500 inhabitants, is a centre of commerce and small industries where you find a geothermal swimming pool, shops, museums, cafés and bars.
LANGUAGE: English will be the language in the camp; intermediate conversational skills are needed.
TERMINAL: Closest international Airport: Keflavík/Reykjavík (KEF). Bus station: Central Reykjavík (BSÍ).
EXTRAS / SPECIAL REMARKS: Participation fee EUR 350 (Euros). The fee can either be transferred in advance via bank transfer, or paid in cash on arrival. It includes accommodation, food and one trip to the Hot River area in Reykjadalur.
The fee does not include the transportation from Reykjavík to the camp and back, which costs EUR 25 one way or EUR 50 both ways. Meeting time will be 14:00 (2:00 pm) on June 16 at SEEDS Office in Reykjavik.
Other excursions (e.g. Golden Circle, the South Shore or Reykjanes Peninsula) can be arranged at discount fares if there is additional free time after the camp activities. It may be cold and/or rainy, so we recommend bringing warm and waterproof clothes (underlayers, overcoats, scarves, gloves and hats) and good walking shoes.