Step by step – Activities for families in poverty

Since 2015, MiR has received a Bufdirs grant, which is aimed towards children living in poverty. The grant is used to arrange trips and activities for families who do not have the opportunity to travel on trips and vacations. Not being able to participate in activities and vacations similar to other children and peers can lead to feelings of exclusion from society. Therefore, this grant has enabled less-privileged families to participate in activities they normally wouldn’t be able to, aiding with inclusion. MiR also wants to give parents and children experiences with activities that they can do themselves later.

The main goal of the project is for more families to participate in activities that they have not done before, receive knowledge on how to arrange similar outdoor activities, and that children/youth feel comfortable in these sorts of activities. The MiR-sponsored activities that families receive knowledge on and insight into are common in Norwegian society.

Through the project, families from Oslo, Bodø, Kristiansand and Fredrikstad participated in various trips and activities. For example, 54 people from the local branch in Oslo went on a summer vacation to Brennabu Leirskole i Valdres, and 37 participants went to Dyreparken in Kristiansand. In addition, fall and winter vacations at Åkersætra Leirsted in Hedemark were planned (with some participants from Fredrikstad joining on the winter vacation).

Participants have been able to try different activities on the trips, such as canoeing, nature hikes, fishing and different competitions. In addition, the trips have focused on international, good and simple food that can be prepared and eaten outdoors. During the fall trip to Åkersætra, we also received funding for cooking through the Norsk Friluftslivs project “Hiking food from all over the world.”

You can read more here (in Norwegian only): 

One of Kristiansand’s activities was traveling on a fall vacation to Tusenfryd and Oslo with 23 participants. MiR rented Ommen, a coastal cabin on the Oslo fjord. Here, the participants relaxed and went on hikes in nature. For winter break in 2018, the Kristiansand MiR branch went to Beingsvær school camp, which you can read more about here.

The Bodø branch has traveled to a cabin in Steigen with 17 participants and to Saltstraument with 24 participants. On the tour, participants traveled by boat, which was a new experience for many. The families went on hikes, grilled and had various activities for children. MiR’s tour to Steigen was also featured in the local newspaper.

All of the participants who went on the tours were very happy that they could go with; the children were especially satisfied. MiR believes that it is important for people with immigrant-background to experience basic cabins, which are cheaper to rent if they would like to go on trips on their own in the future. These trips are a good opportunity to get to know Norwegian habits, activities and traditions, which are unfamiliar for many people. For most people it is a completely new experience. Through these experiences, children gain a shared understanding with other Norwegian children about nature and outdoor life. This common ground contributes to increased integration and language-learning.

MiR hopes that parents who have been skeptical about sending their own children to school camps or to other overnight cabin trips now feel more comfortable after experiencing these types of trips for themselves.

Learn more about MIR-Bodø’s trip here
Learn more about MiR-Oslo’s trip here.

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