Invitation to an Estonian language and culture immersion camp
HomeComing (Lõimeleer) is a summer camp that connects young Estonians living abroad and their families as well as multicultural families living in Estonia with Estonian life and culture. In our camps you can socialise with your peers from Estonia, learn Estonian handicrafts and traditional songs, dances, games and to play instruments. You can join horse cart and dugout canoe rides or go berry picking in the bog. Moreover, you can go on a ghost hunt at night, visit black sauna or join a laughter workshop. We do everything in Estonian and in the Estonian way, but at the same time ensure that nobody`s excluded due to insufficient language skills. The program varies from year to year. In 2020, for example, we organised a traditional Estonian camp wedding. In 2021, we plan to introduce the laughter of Estonians and other people around the world in our laughter workshop.
We have been organising language and culture immersion camps in cooperation with the University of Tartu Viljandi Culture Academy since 2016. The camp teachers are mainly youth work students and alumni from the Viljandi Culture Academy and other Estonian universities who are responsible for carrying out the daily activities, including introducing the national foods, skills, dances and games. In addition, we engage experts with the skills in traditional handicrafts, story-telling etc., with the kids in addition to introducing national foods, skills, dances and games.
Through social and cultural activities inside and outside in the beautiful nature, the camps of the NGO HomeComing contribute to improved Estonia skills and stronger ties with Estonia for the youth from the Estonian diaspora and multicultural families in Estonia. There will be no formal language learning in a classroom setting. Our camp’s working language is Estonian, but we are more than happy to provide explanations in English, to make sure everyone is included. Within the five years existence, we have had participants from the USA, Canada, Sweden, Kazakhstan, Finland, Ireland, Great Britain, New Zealand, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Norway and, of course, Estonia itself. Many children return year after year to meet old friends and teachers.
The recommended age for participants is 10–16. As an extension of the children camp, Family Lõimeleer offers an opportunity for children younger than 10 years and their parents to take part in the camp. The younger children can partake in the activities of the teenagers’ camp, practice their Estonian and, by support from their parents, gather experience and courage for attending the camp unaccompanied in the longer run.
In 2021, the camp will be held in three 6-day shifts: 11–17 July, 18–24 July and 25–31 July.
NB! NB! Important information regarding the COVID-19 situation! If you have registered, but are unable to attend due to COVID-19 restrictions, please notify us before 15 June 2021 and we will postpone your unused ticket and guarantee you a spot in the 2022 summer camp.