As Julien Bourrelle, a French-Canadian PhD candidate in Norway, Founder of Mondå, and author of The Social Guidebook to Norway emphasized in his presentation at the recent International Afternoon (read more about his presentation here: After the International Afternoon): If you want to integrate more fully in Norway and even make some real Norwegian friends the key is to get involved in organized group activities. Norwegians are awaiting you on sports teams and in student organizations, you just have to join. Today I’ll highlight one such potential opportunity, volunteering at Kvarteret.
My stupid back prevents my volunteerism
Although I’ve only been a couple times, I am thrilled (as you can see from this post) by the concept of “Mikromandag”(Micro-Monday), discounted craft-beer Monday (from 17.00 till 1.00). My enthusiasm inspired me to attempt to volunteer for Kvarteret’s pub. But, alas, similarly to when I (spectacularly) failed the 7 Mountain Challenge, my back injury prevented me going the distance. Bending and lifting, apparently, do not work for me. I can tell you though, that apart from my back, my experience was extremely positive. I enjoyed the other volunteers and working in the pub immensely. The student-volunteers seem easy-going but still dedicated, and they were certainly friendly and knowledgable. I still hope to heal enough to volunteer in the future.
How did it work? I signed up on Kvarteret’s website (letting them know about my back concerns), was contacted by email, went in for a trial shift, then again for an interview, and then starting training. Sadly my back did not let me go further (for now). The volunteer-staff were extremely understanding, but they definitely need more volunteers. While I’m healing, you should volunteer in my place!
But first, a little Kvarteret teaser:
Det Akademiske Kvarter (the Academic Quarter), Bergen’s student cultural center has a cafe, a pub, and a lot going on. Kvarteret hosts 1500+ events annually, including concerts, film screenings, and other activities, one such event is Septemberfest, coming up this weekend, the 18th and 19th of September. Septemberfest, Kvarteret’s answer to Oktoberfest, offers a mini beer tasting, with kr 40 vouchers to get 2 dl tastes of 7 Fjell, Lysefjorden Mikrobryggeri, Northern & Co, and Voss Bryggeri beers. Even the cafe will offer food on Friday inspired by Oktoberfesty-ness (look out, sausages!). So grab your lederhosen and try out a Kvarteret event and some great Norwegian microbrews.
You can check out everything else that’s going on at Kvarteret’s website, here.
Learn more about Volunteering at Kvarteret
If Septemberfest and my overexcitement about good beer doesn’t make you want to start volunteering for Kvarteret immediately…
- You might want to explore their volunteer page where you can watch videos about the different volunteer areas (although these appear to be in Norsk) including hospitality, security, sound and light (AV), public relations, kitchen staff, production, IT, legal, and finance.
- Or check out a short article highlighting a couple volunteers, here.
- And definitely take a look at Studvest article Internationals find volunteer opportunities at Kvarteret, which highlights the benefits and responsibilities of volunteering at Kvarteret.