About the volunteer workSEEDS volunteers will be doing environmental work in the Fjarðabyggð district in the East fjords of Iceland, supporting the environmental department of the towns. Our host is the local municipality and in cooperation with them, we will work in different protected areas, country parks or nature reserves. The project will mostly take place at the country park of Neskaupstaður and in the Hólmanes nature reserve, designated as protected areas in 1972 and 1973. The country park and nature reserve are areas considered important for their landscape, flora and fauna. Common to them is the protection of their wildlife and landscape and a restriction on development. They are intended for recreational purposes and open to the general public. The flourishing bird life and unusual rock formations make the areas popular for outdoor activities. The main duties will be to remove and stop the spread of invasive species as lupine (Lupinus nootkatensis) and wild chervil (Anthriscus sylvestris) from/around the protected areas. The lupine plant (originally from Alaska) is/was used to control soil erosion and revegetate eroded areas. In some parts of Iceland, lupine has spread to a greater extent than desired, endangering native plant species; so it must be removed from certain areas. The work can be physically demanding and might require a good physical condition. No previous experience is needed. As it is outdoors work, volunteers shall be ready to adapt and be flexible with the working and free-time schedule, as depending on the weather, we may not be able to perform some of the tasks or activities planned. Volunteers need to be prepared for working and walking in a wild landscape and sometimes cold weather. Be prepared to experience all kinds of weather and bring warm clothes as the tasks take place outside and it can get cold. Bring warm under-layers, waterproofs, walking shoes/boots, a good sleeping bag and gloves. The working sites are 5 to 7 Kilometers away from urban areas and we usually leave in the morning for the working sites and return in the afternoon. We will unroot or cut the plants, both manually and also with the help of tools and machines. The working day normally runs from 09:00 - 17:00 with breaks for lunch and coffee; however, please be prepared for some flexibility due to the nature of Iceland's changeable weather.
Local accommodationSEEDS volunteers will be hosted in a local house in the municipality. Volunteers will sleep on mattresses on the floor sharing rooms. Please bring your own sleeping bag. The house is equipped with a kitchen. Volunteers will share the duties of preparing food, cooking meals and cleaning. There is no shower in the house, but we will have free access to showers in the local swimming pool. Do not forget some traditional/typical food or drinks from your home country for the international evening.
About the project locationThe project takes place in the municipality of Fjarðabyggð, East of Iceland in a beautiful area surrounded by magnificent mountains, picturesque fjords and the sea. Fjarðabyggð is comprised of six fjords, Mjóifjörður, Eskifjörður, Reyðarfjörður, Norðfjörður, Fáskrúðsfjörður and Stöðvafjörður. The name of the municipality, which is the most easterly one in Iceland, has a strong fjord connection, meaning the people/or the settlement of the fjords. Of the municipality's six villages the most populous one, is Neskaupstaður, with about 1,400 residents. The attractions are a combination of landscape, history and easy going attitude towards life. Free access to the local swimming pool and hot tubs, as to the public buses and into the local museums.
RequirementsParticipation fee EUR 280 (Euros). Please note that these fees are to be paid to SEEDS on arrival in either Euros or Icelandic krónas. English will be the language in the camp; basic conversational skills are needed.
Extra info about the projectVolunteers need to be prepared for working and walking in a wild landscape and sometimes cold weather. Be prepared to experience all kinds of weather and bring warm winter clothes as the tasks take place outside and it can get cold. Bring warm under-layers, waterproofs, walking shoes/boots, a good sleeping bag and gloves. Free access to the local swimming pool and hot tubs, as to the public buses and into the local museums.