WORK / PROJECT: SEEDS Volunteers will have the unique opportunity to work in the Southwest of Iceland on a big festival surrounding the 1000 year anniversary of the famous incidents that make up the Icelandic Saga of Burnt Njál. We will assist in various tasks preparing for the festival, building the stage, scenes and props, making Viking weapons and sewing costumes. We will also be working on the environment and taking part in preparing and making a facility for competing in Viking-era competitions and games. A big part of our role there will be taking part in re-enactment of the Saga of Burnt Njál. This will include taking part in the games and competitions and re-enacting the big famous last fight scene leading to the burning of Njál and his family. The tale centres on the life of Njáll Þorgeirsson and his family, who are casually ensnared in a minor issue that somehow escalates into a frightful, fifty-year blood feud. Bound by their own personalities, fate and sense of honour, nobody is able to stop the bloodshed, which ends only after the original characters (and many of their descendants) have been killed.
There is far more to Njál's saga than it's violence, and the tale paints a vivid picture of Iceland that was, in some ways, an idyllic time: the power of the Alþingi at Þingvellir at its peak, Christianity was overpowering paganism, and the country's settlers lived by their own efforts on farming and freebooting.- (The Rough Guide to Iceland, 2004)
ACCOMMODATION: SEEDS volunteers will stay in a fully equipped house; in a sleeping bag accommodation sharing rooms. Please bring your own sleeping bag.
Volunteers will receive food and be in charge of the different cooking and cleaning activities. Equipped kitchen with a beautiful dining room and washing machine are available. Do not forget some traditional/typical food from your home country for the international evening.
LOCATION: Most of the festivities will take place in the town of Hvolsvöllur; located in the Southwest of Iceland in the broad open mouth of the Markarfljót valley, along which the intricately tangled shallow rivers flows westward out from the Mýrdalsjökull and Eyjafjallajökull caps. This is the area of one of Iceland's most beloved Sagas and only 20 km coastward off the highway and across the flat, waterlogged countryside you will find Berþórshvoll, where Njál's homestead sat a thousand years ago. In this area you will find some of Iceland's most beautiful places, like Þórsmörk, Tindfjöll, Eyjafjallajökull, Skógarfoss, Seljalandsfoss (a waterfall you can walk behind)and Paradísarhellir (Paradise Cave) in addition to finding unique natural and geological heritage sites and relics of a centuries-old forest.
LANGUAGE: English will be the language of the camp; high proficiency is not required.
TERMINAL: Closest International Airport: Keflavík/Reykjavík (KEF).
SEEDS organises the 'minibus option', a shared transport from Reykjavík to the camps and back again, which apart from being cheaper and more convenient, allows volunteers to meet fellow campers and have a relaxed trip, while stopping on the way for interesting and tourist sites.
EXTRAS / SPECIAL REMARKS: Participation fee is EUR 160.
Due to the historical relation, volunteers are recommended to read the Saga of Burnt Njál; which might make the camp a lot more interesting. Volunteers need to be motivated to work outdoors and be willing to take part in all the diverse projects connected with the work camp.
SEEDS and/or our hosting partner will organise free time activities in the area for the volunteers.