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international

the

ISSN 2596-5220

ALMOND SHORTBREAD

DANISH LOCAL ELECTIONS - 16 NOV

COPING WITH EXPAT-GUILT

DRINK LIKE THE DANES DO?

NOVEMBER 2021 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM

BRINGING DENMARK INTO A NEW AGE

RISING POLITICIAN NARCIS IS ALWAYS ON THE LOOKOUT FOR NEW CHALLENGES!

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PRACTISING DAILY GRATITUDE WILL BOOST YOUR HAPPINESS THERE IS A LOT TO BE SAID OF LIVING THIS INTERNATIONAL LIFE. FOR ONE, YOU GET TO SHARE AND ARE EXPOSED TO DIFFERENT CULTURES AND PERHAPS ADOPT SOME OF THEIR POPULAR HOLIDAYS. THANKSGIVING IS ONE SUCH CULTURAL EXCHANGE AND IS A DAY OF GRATITUDE IN THE UNITED STATES, WHERE PEOPLE GIVE THANKS. SO WHY LIMIT BEING GRATEFUL TO JUST ONE DAY?

B

MEET THE TEAM

BEING THANKFUL DEVELOPS a positive mindset, primar-

EDITOR & FOUNDER

ily when we practice it every day. Thus, we grow in the direction of what we regularly focus on — daily gratitude improves your well-being dramatically.

Lyndsay Jensen - lyndsay@the-intl.com

MANAGING DIRECTOR & PARTNER

SCIENCE THINKS YOU SHOULD BE GRATEFUL

Kenneth Macalpine - kenneth@the-intl.com

Sadly, bad memories are easier to remember, where negative experiences are more vivid than positive ones. Rewiring our brain takes time. You have to train your brain to acknowledge positive events and make it a habit of creating good memories. Science suggests that regular and deliberate recording of one's blessings improves our mental and physical health. But what does it take to get there? Appreciation is the joy of seeing the good in something or someone - this mental state boosts our happiness and motivation. However, it requires not taking everything for granted - it's about discovering the value in what you already have. Gratitude connects you to something greater than yourself - it's experiencing life as a surprise gift. There's always something new to discover and be thankful for. You have to keep your mind open - make room for the good memories, not the bad ones. Gratitude is the quality of being thankful and being ready to show appreciation for and return kindness. It's essential to focus on building a habit - enjoy the practice without expecting anything in return.

DEVELOPING A GRATITUDE HABIT Gratitude is more than saying thank you. It's about acknowledging the value of your experiences - thankfulness requires genuine appreciation. It also involves a complex interplay between the giver and receiver - appreciation will help you see more opportunities. If you thank someone for something meaningless, they will perceive your gratitude as an obligation. If you are appreciative just to look good - the world will see you as not being genuine. Being appreciative starts with you. Most people are unhappy because they can't acknowledge their own goodness. Keeping a gratitude journal is an increasingly popular practice - it helps you create the time and space for focusing on what went well. Your life is full of things to be grateful for, no matter how small. So start paying attention – you'll be surprised once you begin your journey!

HOW TO BEGIN A GRATITUDE JOURNAL We spend our lives looking for that one perfect moment — a gratitude journal will help you see happiness in real ones. Here is how to start:

CONSULTING EDITOR Conrad Egbert

GRAPHIC DESIGN Karen Steyn - www.stainedmedia.co.za

WRITERS TEAM Ophelia Wu; Sarah Redohl; Mariano Davies; Skyler Bentley Hall; Tiny Maerschalk; Monika Pedersen; Narcis Matache; Tarek Abusham; Sara R. Newell; Aina Masood; Susan Jessen Spiele; Michaela Medvedova; Shani Bishop; Natasha Curach; Conrad Molden; Heather Storgaard

COVER PICTURE Alex Flutur - www.instagram.com/creative.flutur

"GRATITUDE IS MORE THAN SAYING THANK YOU. IT'S ABOUT ACKNOWLEDGING THE VALUE OF YOUR EXPERIENCES — THANKFULNESS REQUIRES GENUINE APPRECIATION." feel grateful for about life, others, and yourself. The purpose is to finish your day celebrating good things instead of complaining about what went wrong. Be specific. Capture the experience, not just the fact. As human beings, we find it easier to remember and connect with stories.

REFLECT AND MOVE ON A gratitude journal is habit-forming and forces us to recognise the best in us and the life around us. By affirming past and present strengths, successes, and potentials, we acknowledge the positive in life. Once you have captured all the good news, reflect on the day, and write one sentence to summarise your day using this format: "Today was great because…".

REPEAT GET READY One hour before you go to bed, unplug yourself from TV, social media, emails, news, etc. The light of screens reduces melatonin production, and it confuses your body which can jeopardise your sleep. Sit down in a comfortable position and take 2–3 deep breaths. Feel how the air flows through your body. Reconnect with your body. Take deeper breaths and relax.

PUT YOUR WORRIES TO ONE SIDE Think about what's worrying you or making you anxious? Write it down, and visualise how your worries can move from your head to the paper.

At first, you might find it hard to remember the 'good things.' That's okay - the process takes time as we are wired to remember the bad things. However, in time, your brain will become better and better at creating positive memories. Thankfulness is more than celebrating a delicious dinner with your family. It requires taking the time to pause and reflect. Feeling grateful and happy is something to celebrate every day, not just once a year.

SoMe Ambassadors Neelam Gahlaut; Michaela Medvedova; Aina Masood; Katie Noyed; Amelie Taralle; Ane-Sophie Custura; Terumi Mascarenhas; Manon Coolen; Leslie Noygues; Judit Farkas; Shelly Pandey; Sofia Rigoni; Laura Luzinska; Shivangi Singh; Ritika Jain; Rosa Ingstrup; Pavlos Tsiakoumis

DISTRIBUTION The International is available at a range of businesses, institutions, embassies, cafés and public libraries across Denmark

SALES sales@the-intl.com

SUBSCRIPTIONS For corporate delivery of the printed edition please contact: lyndsay@the-intl.com The International is published 12 times a year. This issue was published on 3 November, 2021. Notice: The publishers regret that they cannot accept any liability for error or omissions contained in this publication. The opinions and views presented need not necessarily reflect those of the publishers. Readers are advised to seek special counsel before acting on any information contained herein. All rights reserved. No part of this publication form without written permission from the publishers. Published by and © 2021 The International ApS. Registered in Denmark / CVR Number:

IDENTIFY THE GOOD MEMORIES OF THE DAY

NOVEMBER 2021 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM

Gustav Soderstjerna - gustav@the-intl.com

or contents thereof may be reproduced, stored or transmitted in any

Happy Thanksgiving! Love,

Revisit your entire day and recollect all good moments, no matter how small. Write down everything that you should

SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM SoMe Coordinator

LYNDSAY JENSEN - EDITOR & FOUNDER THE-INTL.COM

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THE FEEL-GOOD STORIES OF DENMARK GREAT MINDS READ ALIKE

KATHARINE H NOYED

MICHAELA MEDVEĎOVÁ The club also cooperates with the Odense Library; they have a list of suggested books the members can get copies of. People attending the club can also choose a book themselves but in that case, all members have to agree to procure it themselves. Ingrid tries to make the meetings more social-oriented.

For those struggling to meet new people, making connections abroad can be challenging. However, in Odense, there is a potential solution - you can join the International Book Club!

“I want everyone to get to know each other a little before we start talking. I never forget that the point is to make a network.”

Started by the International Community Odense, the club is run by volunteers. "I tend to say that the book is an excuse. The real purpose is to make a networking event where like-mind-

GRATITUDE IN DENMARK

ed people that are a little more introverted can meet each other," says Ingrid Benavente, who currently runs the club. You can join the bibliophiles at Nelle's in the Odense Teater. They meet to discuss a new book at the end of every month, usually the last Friday of the month. Sometimes, it is a group of 15-20 people, sometimes there are just four. "It varies a lot depending on the length of the book. People tend to skip the meeting if they don't finish it. But I encourage everyone to come regardless."

Once they start talking about the book, she has ready-made questions to lead the conversation a bit. In a smaller group, people usually get very engaged, resulting in a compelling debate. "We come from all over the world, from different educational backgrounds and cultures, so we have different ideas and readings." With more controversial books, the discussion can get too political - Ingrid's role is to try to keep the tone civil. The book for the next month is always announced ahead of the club's Facebook group meeting. Fancy a read? THE-INTL

SHANI BISHOP

STANDING TOGETHER AGAINST BULLYING International and Danish learners celebrate Pink T-shirt day together. On Friday 24th September, over 1000 learners, 100 teachers and 1 Principal from NGG, which includes North Zealand International School (NIS), came together to wear pink T-shirts. Pink T-shirt Day allows learners to demonstrate respect for each other and promote a positive learning environment. The learners joined hands and circled the school building in a show of unity. The idea originated in Canada in 2007 and was organised by David Shepherd and Travis Price. They bought and handed out 50 pink T-shirts to learners after a ninth-grade learner was bullied for wearing a pink shirt. So every year, everyone at NGG, including NIS, unite in recognition and in a desire to create a safe space for everyone to learn and play. Pink T-shirt day allows everyone at NGG and NIS to think about the issue and what they can do to make life better for everyone, whether as an upstander or modifying their own behaviour.

SHANI BISHOP is a Brit with extensive international marketing experience including brand management and international marketing for UK universities. She currently provides marketing advice for international education.

“Kids love Pink T-shirt Day; they enjoy the social experience and how it feels unifying in a healthy way.” This year, in preparation for Pink T-shirt Day, NIS posted some videos about what makes a good friend. Advika, a year seven learner from India, said, “A good friend to me is someone who will always be there, is really nice to you. Instead of trying to tell you what to do, they are helping you”. Shaun, a year five learner from Zimbabwe, said, “ a good classmate is someone who does the personal goals to all people”. The IPC personal goals at NIS are Thinker, Adaptable, Resilient, Collaborator, Communicator, Respectful, Empathetic and Ethical. These traits are nurtured all through the curriculum at NIS. THE-INTL

MICHAELA MEDVEDOVÁ comes from Slovakia and moved to Denmark 3 years ago to study for her Master's degree. Living in Odense she says it's the perfect city for her because it's not too large to be intimidating, but still exciting!

November is here, marking a transition into darker, shorter, and colder days. As we brace ourselves for winter by investing in ‘happy’ lights, copious amounts of Vitamin D tablets, and lots of aerobic exercise classes (or maybe that’s just me!). But, we at The International believe it doesn’t have to be all bad! We asked you your top reasons for experiencing gratitude for your lives here in Denmark. Some of the responses we received were relatively light— citing the sweet treats of Danish bakeries or the lack of particularly life-threatening animals (ingen specielt livsfarlige dyr) as reasons for feeling gratitude, while others pertained to the fabric of Danish society. But, overwhelmingly, and regardless of nationality, we encountered two overarching themes that we present below: It’s no surprise that both Danes and internationals alike expressed gratitude for the system we contribute to here in Denmark. For instance, the opportunity to take an education regardless of one’s economic background paired with Statens Uddannelsesstøtte (SU) or the grant to help alleviate the financial stress of studying equated to many thankful residents. Moreover, universal healthcare, dagpenge, and a system preventing most people from falling through the cracks of society were cited at equal rates. In addition to the vast state support people enjoy here in Denmark, many responses pertained to the work-life balance linked to Danish society. Between the 37.5-hour fuldtid work week, six weeks of paid vacation a year, and the prioritisation of family life through 52 weeks of paid barsel, feelings of gratitude were abundant among our readers. One individual informed us that because of this strong work-life balance, she has found her calm here in Denmark— which we can understand! Although November marks the transition into darker, colder times, we truly have much to be grateful for here in Denmark. As you go through this month, we at The International challenge you not to dwell on life’s small challenges but rather be mindful of the things that make your life a bit better. Whether this is the sweet taste of Studentebrød from your local bakery or the support of the Danish government when times get tough, there really is much to be grateful for! THE-INTL

KATHARINE H NOYED is from the United States. After working in the United Arab Emirates, Katharine now lives in Roskilde with her husband and is currently pursuing a graduate degree in Development and International Relations with a focus on Global Refugee Studies.

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ALL EVENTS

HERNING

VEJLE

IN NOVEMBER

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Even though Denmark is returning to normal, we still encourage you to follow the government's guidelines and stay safe. For up to date information on these guidelines and the latest news, follow www.coronasmitte.dk

6 NOVEMBER

ALL NOVEMBER

EGYPT - THE COUNTRY OF THE PHAROAHS'

CULTURAL MUSEUM The Cultural Museum relates the history of Denmark seen from the perspective of the town of Vejle – from ancient to more recent times. It's a hands-on museum with an engaging experience that involves every part of the body!

The sun god Re or Ra, created the pyramids so that the king could unite with the sun. The exhibition tells the story of the pharoahs' amazing time and buildings approx. 3000 BC along the banks of the Nile in Egypt and which here can be experienced up close. Come and see a 5-meter large pyramid with a secret passage that leads into a burial chamber filled with both murals and exciting experiences.

Bog body and metal detectors Meet one of the world's best-preserved 'bog bodies,' which spent more than 2,000 years in the cold embrace of the bogs of Haraldskær Mose before the female body, called the Haraldskær Woman, was found by two ditch diggers in 1835. The exhibition introduces you to the bogs that were the final resting place of the Haraldskær Woman. Here you can also learn about history's many unknown bog bodies and why these people ended up in swampy grounds. You can watch films about the Haraldskær Woman at the museum and learn about scientific studies and archaeological discussions. What was life like in Vejle and its vicinity in the Iron Age when the Haraldskær Woman lived? An exhibition displays hundreds of artefacts that relate to what life was like in the Iron Age. Choose which archaeological finds discovered near Vejle to experience, such as significant sacrificial treasures from Vingsted Lake. Also, learn about excavation methods and try digging in the eight-metre-long excavation box.

FOR MORE INFO: HTTP://WWW.HERNINGCENTRET.DK/

VISIT DENMARK - G0168178 1 (TRUKKET)

FUNEN

Spinning machines and disco dancing Visit the two exhibitions at the Cultural Museum on the cotton industry in Vejle and hear stories by the managers who headed the spinning mills and their employees. Also, learn about the heat and noise of the spinning mill and experience what it was like to be in the halls when the machines were running. Finally, learn about the industry's hardships, including low wages and occupational hazards, as well as the lifelong friendships that evolved among employees.

JUTLAND

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FOR MORE INFO: WWW.VEJLEMUSEERNE.DK

VEJLE MUSEERNE FB PAGE

ISTOCK

VISIT DENMARK - VARNÆS HOVED - CLAUS VISBY

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The Cultural Museum is part of Vejlemuseerne and is closed on Mondays, except for Easter Monday and Whit Monday.


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AALBORG

7 NOVEMBER WEST SIDE STORY (SING-A-LONG) Come and sing along to evergreens like ‘Maria’, ‘Tonight’ and ‘America’ in the sing-a-long version of the beloved Leonard Bernstein musical ‘West Side Story’. ‘West Side Story’ is a classic drama about two young people - Maria and Tony from rival groups in New York, who fall in love while the tension between their respective gangs builds up to a tragedy. The plot is loosely based on Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet' but transplanted to the harsh streets of New York. That director Robert Wise in 1961 took the musical kings Leonard Bernstein, Jerome Robbins and a young Stephen Sondheim under his arm and sat down to film decades of Broadway's greatest success, created a certain pressure of expectations, but the result is a musical masterpiece with song, dance, strong emotions and great social insight.

A focus on learning

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COPENHAGEN

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Early Years setting (3-5 year olds) Primary School (5-11 year olds) Secondary School (11-16 year olds) High School (16-18 year olds)

10 NOVEMBER SASHIKO EMBROIDERY WORKSHOP

www.nis-ngg.dk Cirkelhuset, Christianshusvej 16

Learn to create beautiful “little stabs” of needlework to reinforce and re-invigorate your textiles with our Sashiko workshop. Together, you’ll be guided on the Japanese art form of Sashiko embroidery, you’ll learn about patterning, textile knowledge, and repairing for that perfectly embroidered item every time. Using the provided tools and equipment you’ll craft your own biomimetic patterns and successfully mend and repair textiles using the little stabbing art form. You’ll be guided in this 2-hour master class learning the traditional heritage craft of Sashiko embroidery whilst being guided about biomimetic patterns, threads, and textiles. You’ll craft your own pieces with ease and flair. And walk away feeling empowered with science knowledge and a new skill.

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DK, 2970 Hørsholm

Small classes · Support and guidance from dedicated teachers · Sports College · Music Academy · An international learning environment

Cambridge International School

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PICK

!

PICK

HASLEV

UP SPOT

!

GRAB A FREE PR COPY OF INTED THE PAPER AT SOCIAL BR EW

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COPENHAGEN

UP SPOT

GRAB A FREE PR COPY OF INTED THE PAPER AT ESCAPE ST ART UDIO

ART ESCAPE STUDIOS FB PAGE

COPENHAGEN

13 NOVEMBER

EVERY SUNDAY

19-21 NOVEMBER

MEDITATION AND INTUITIVE FLUID ART

ACOUSTIC SUNDAYS

GISSELFELD CASTLE CHRISTMAS MARKET

Acoustic Sundays, Hosted By Jimmy Jimee is a songwriter in Bob Marley and John Lennon's tradition, where love songs, spiritual songs, and political protest songs stand side by side as one. Jimmy. Acoustic Sunday's is the platform that allows everyone to strengthen their human touch. Service is, as usual, lunch and dinner menu, fantastic coffee from Honduras, beers and a variety of wines.

During this workshop hosted by Christina Thamm, we will tune into our inner state through a shared meditation before diving into our intuitive painting session with fluid art. We will use different techniques that feel right at the moment. Anyone can attend the class, we will be sitting on blankets on the floor and working on larger canvases than the regular workshops in Acrylic Pouring. It will be a more intimate setting with fewer people. It's a beautiful chance to soothe your inner child and tune into your intuition, leaving your thinking and controlling mind behind. This two-hour workshop will teach you everything you need to create a beautiful abstract painting with fluid art techniques. No experience is needed whatsoever, and we provide all materials.

Get into the Christmas mood at Gisselfeld Castle this year. But, of course, our most significant and proudest tradition is at Gisselfeld's annual Christmas Market, where the scent of Christmas and the many inspiring stands help set the perfect mood. The Christmas market, which always takes place during the last two (whole) weekends in November, offers lots of real cosy and Christmas atmosphere, pony riding, music and entertainment, and the sale of Christmas trees and decorative greenery. But, of course, Santa Claus will always be there to greet children and childish souls in "Santa's Cave" under the Castle.

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AARHUS

DEN GAMLE BY FB PAGE

FENSMARK

HOLMEGAARD FB PAGE

BØRGLUM KLOSTER FB PAGE

VRÅ

19-21 NOVEMBER 20-21 NOVEMBER 23 NOV - 5 JAN BØRGLUM KLOSTER CHRISTMAS MARKET

CHRISTMAS MARKET AT HOLMEGAARD VÆRK

The Christmas market is Børglum Kloster's largest event, with many different stalls in arts, crafts, Christmas decorations, and more on three floors in the east wing. Also, find stalls with delicacies in the old manor house horse stable, which offers local specialities. The Christmas market will also offer music this year, where the Christmas atmosphere will be enhanced with a cosy Santa orchestra in the monastery courtyard. During the Christmas weekends, the café will serve lovely dishes with everything that belongs on a traditional Christmas table, and this year the café has a brand new Christmas menu! The monastery shop also comes with this year's best Christmas gift. Børglum monastery is also known from the nationwide Christmas calendar 'Ludvig og julemanden', the most viewed Christmas calendar in Danish history.

Come to the Christmas market at Holmegaard Værk between 20-21 November! Experience up to 50 stands filled with some of the country's top, budding designers and artists. Unleash your creativity, make your own Christmas gifts and decorations at the Christmas workshop. Join exciting Christmas walks through the beautiful glass city, learning more about Christmas glass and the glassworks' older traditions. Eat your fill of apple slices and mulled wine, experience the museum's fantastic glassblowers, blow some of Holmegaard's most iconic glass - from the Provence bowl to the Kluk bottle - and much, much more ...

CHRISTMAS IN DEN GAMLE BY We guarantee many experiences for all ages and a Christmas atmosphere in the streets with Christmas decorations and lanterns. Explore the exhibitions, and experience how the Danish Christmas traditions started. Enjoy a cup of hot chocolate, Christmas food or goodies from the stalls and buy historic Christmas ornaments and gifts from the shops. - The Christmas route - Visit the elves' attic - Stalls and Christmas goodies - Christmas shop and Christmas museum - Food and drinks

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COPENHAGEN

COPENHAGEN

FB PAGE

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MARIBO

26 NOVEMBER

27 NOVEMBER

28 NOVEMBER

INTERNATIONAL HAPPY HOUR

UGLY CHRISTMAS JUMPER WORKSHOP

FAMILY CHRISTMAS PARTY

International Community Lolland Falster is hosting a Happy Hour event! Everyone is invited, but we especially encourage newcomers on Lolland and Falster, Danes and internationals alike, to take this opportunity to join our network in an informal setting and start the weekend in good company. Come by yourself, with your partner, or bring the whole family. The International Community Lolland-Falster looks forward to seeing you there!

Join us for the annual ugly Christmas jumper workshop and learn how to sew, glue, bedazzle and shine this festive season in your own ugly festive sweater. There is one thing we all like to do this time of year: to get in the festive spirit. We all start hanging up decorations and buying our Christmas jumpers. As we do, we also love to make the most of it by catching up with friends and family or even taking part in a few crafts. Together, we'll handcraft the best festive jumpers that Copenhagen has ever seen. You'll bedazzle, deck, glue, and glitter to your heart's content. Using the provided tools and equipment, you'll craft your bespoke festive knitwear with ease and a smile on your face.

FOR MORE INF0: HTTPS://FB.ME/E/1PUYADX2M

Christmas Festivities for the Entire Family The Novo Nordisk Foundation and Novo Holdings A/S are excited to welcome you and your loved ones to a fun-filled afternoon of Christmas "Hygge" at Tuborg Havnevej 19. Our Atrium will be transformed into an enchanting winter wonderland for all to enjoy. The day will be speckled with Christmas activities, presents and other goodies for all the children! As for the adults, there will be plenty of warm glogg and other treats throughout the entire afternoon.

FOR MORE INFO: HTTPS://WWW.EVENTBRITE.COM/D/DENMARK--COPENHAGEN/PARTIES/

NB: Unless otherwise noted, workshops are for those 18 years of age or over. Our classes are held in English; however, we do speak Danish also.

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INTERESTED

IN GETTING THE LATEST ISSUE AT YOUR SCHOOL? If you would like a subscription ask your school or institution to send us an email by following the QR code

HOW EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS CAN HELP: By purchasing a subscription to support your international staff, students and parents Using the copies as a conversation tool between Danish and international students and staff

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GIVING SHAPE TO A NEW AGE

FROM A VILLAGE BOY IN ROMANIA DEVOURING LITERARY ADVENTURES TO THE FIRST NON-DANISH REGIONAL COUNCILMAN, NARCIS GEORGE MATACHE HAS ALWAYS BEEN HUNGRY FOR A CHALLENGE.

PHOTOGRAPHS ALEX FLUTUR - WWW.INSTAGRAM.COM/CREATIVE.FLUTUR/

TEXT MICHAELA MEDVEĎOVÁ

YOU MAY KNOW him from the posters. Narcis George Matache is the man running for reelection to the Regional Council of North Denmark. After all, what else could have become of a child that was so interested in the politics section of his grandfather's newspaper?

thing. For them, it was just another political project, and they thought: 'They are going to change their minds again in a few years.'" Narcis felt they did not invest adequately in English, good teachers, top-level skills, or connecting their international students with the job market.

HUNGRY FOR MORE

FROM A DANISH NIGHTMARE TO SPANISH RESPECT

And it wasn't just newspapers - Narcis has always loved adventure books. "When I was small, I had this crazy idea to live in every country in the world for a year. Then I found out there are more than 200 of them. That caused a little spell of depression," laughs Narcis. The wanderlust never left his soul. When he turned 18, the then village boy from Eastern Romania decided to go and see more of the world. "I wanted to experience new things. I was curious to see if the worlds presented in books match what I had imagined. I was hungry for adventure, for diversity. Just very hungry for more." He looked at where he could study in English - but also where he could afford to study. The finger on the map landed on Denmark - and specifically Aalborg. "In the beginning, coming here was purely an economic decision. My parents dropped me off at my new apartment, put a few essentials in the kitchen, and said: 'Good luck, here's the money, survive.' And drove back to Romania." His Danish beginnings were dark, cold, and lonely. Back in 2009, there were only about 300 internationals in Aalborg. "There weren't many opportunities for us. Nobody was prepared for English speakers in the city. The school did not see us as a long-term

Narcis was not impressed with his first year in Denmark. "I didn't click with anything. I hadn't evolved as a person yet. As Europeans, we are home in every one out of the 27 states. From the first minute I entered Denmark, I was home – but at the time, I didn't feel like I was." All of this made him long for a change in the air. Erasmus in Spain changed everything, prompting the natural introvert to be more sociable and changing his outlook on Denmark. "People there had such respect just for the idea of me being a Danish student. Denmark had a great image, and it translated into how people treated me. If I had presented myself as Romanian, it would have been completely different." So Narcis felt he should return to Denmark and understand why others value the country so much. Now that he has lived here for over a decade, he can say it would be hard to find a better society with a better quality of life - even when talking as a non-Dane. Yet, most internationals don't know the system and end up being excluded from it. If they don't organise, participate, and aren't a part of the decision-making, they don't exist. "But the system doesn't discriminate. On the contrary, it ensures that anyone who organis-

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campaign is something you need to keep," smiles Narcis. But for that, internationals need to be interested in voting. So often, they don't realise they have the right to vote in local elections - and many feel like they have no one to vote for. "Putting international candidates on posters helps show that running for office is not just something reserved for the Danes. It helps them realise that we internationals don't just work in services. And after a few years, others will maybe take a step towards running, too." Having international candidates helps change the Danish perception, too. It sends a clear message: They are here to stay.

SHAPING DENMARK

es in Denmark can obtain influence and change their status." He rejects the word integration, so focused on the word inclusion. He recognises he can never become "Danish" and debates the very concept. "Are you Danish when you celebrate traditions, speak the language, and eat the food? I'm never going to be that. Or are you Danish when you adopt the values and ways of organising? I want to be able to achieve my full potential in Denmark without having to adhere to the idea of becoming Danish."

"HAVING INTERNATIONAL CANDIDATES HELPS CHANGE THE DANISH PERCEPTION, TOO. IT SENDS A CLEAR MESSAGE: THEY ARE HERE TO STAY."

AN AALBORGENSER ON A MISSION Denmark has indeed changed in Narcis's eyes since the cold, dark, lonely, unhomely days of a decade past. He realised it at a panel debate in Brussels, where he presented the Danish social system. "I spoke about Denmark and Aalborg with so much passion. I realised I grew attached to this place. I cannot become Danish, but I did become a local, an Aalborgenser. I have roots here." In October, a book came out detailing how Aalborg became multicultural. Narcis was one of the key people behind the change. No wonder. When he came to Denmark, no organisations in the city accepted non-Danish speakers. So Narcis decided to start European Youth North Denmark, showing other associations what they have to gain by adopting English. Quickly making it the most prominent organisation with loads of support, others wished to follow the same recipe. Fast forward to 2018, and every organisation started to include non-Danes. While trying to raise awareness that internationals could be a voting base and should be included, the idea of the International House North Denmark was born. Behind all of this are demographic changes that put pressure on the city. For example, the number of internationals in Aalborg rose from 300 to 22,000 – this seems to be the case throughout Denmark. "After a whole year of recruitment, I managed to have 14 local and one regional nonDanish election candidates in different municipalities outside of the North." The math is simple - if more internationals vote, more parties will be interested in the group and campaign towards them. "And because this is Danish politics, a promise made in the

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A lot has changed for Narcis since he started reading political news as a child. But his interest in politics was here to stay, too. At 13, he became a member of a political party. At 14, he ran a campaign for the mayor of his village. And after his return from Erasmus in Spain, which helped him reevaluate Denmark, Narcis discovered he had the right to vote and be politically active. But finding a political party in Denmark that would accept him without Danish skills was not easy. Only Social Democrats said yes - but that they would not hold meetings in English. "That worked with me. It was the first step. They were all surprised about the 22-year-old boy coming in, "he laughs. Surprises kept coming - in 2017, he became the first non-Dane in history to run for regional elections. Of course, people were puzzled and asked him why run when Denmark wasn't even his home. But at the same time, he had a lot of support, and from Danes as well. They were stopping him on the streets, recognising him easily - as the first nonDane to run, Danish media had a curious interest in him. "They liked that I was promoting voting rights, trying to achieve inclusion, speaking positively about Denmark. They said they could see I understood what Denmark was about." Unfortunately, when the final votes were counted for the 2017 elections, Narcis missed a hundred to be elected. But three years later, someone on the Regional Council had to step away from their position. So Narcis took their position, becoming the first non-Danish Regional Councilman, inheriting the focus on psychiatry and the special sector. After the new term begins, he would like to open a new committee for the digitalisation of the healthcare system. "The age group in the Regional Council is quite high. Unfortunately, very few people understand the new digitalisation changes in the healthcare system, which took many of them by surprise during the pandemic. That's problematic. We are the ones supposed to be governing the healthcare system." He would also like to focus on regional development, culture, and climate. The November 16 election is what lies between him and his visions.

A NEW AGE The reelection campaign has been keeping him busy. He runs the Danish, English, and Romanian campaigns simultaneously and focuses on different minorities with a dedicated day, from October to November 12. Luckily enough, in a pool of almost 400 candidates running for 41 spots, he doesn't have any competitor for the non-Danish vote. But Narcis can see his message of political involvement has reached much broader. People are already writing to him about the preparation for the election in four years. He believes that by 2030, there should be a non-Dane on every local and regional council. With every campaign like his, there is a shift in perspective. "Denmark tries to ignore it, but we are a melting pot. I am not influenced by Danish culture alone. There are 155 cultures in my city. That's who an Aalborgenser is nowadays - someone that already went through this cauldron of cultures that has created a new persona. A New Age man."


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POWER COUPLE The international nature of his twenties is also reflected in his home. Narcis met his wife Monika after she moved to Denmark from Poland and was looking for a place to stay. Ten years later, they have a very cosmopolitan household. "It would be hard to see this as a blend of cultures, though. It's more that we both became global-minded. But my English has deteriorated a bit. It evolved into a strange spoken English that has influences from Romanian and Polish. So I can say it's European that we speak at home," laughs Narcis. His wife has also travelled the world. Sometimes, they would meet at the same event. "We were like a power couple. Once, we were at a climate event in Paris, where we were both invited for different reasons. All the prime ministers and big shots were there. And we got onto the stage and fist-bumped." However, Narcis feels he has done all the travelling he wanted to. Nowadays, he finds peace in gardening. That doesn't mean he's done with challenges. Very recently, the couple welcomed their first daughter. "It's a perfect way to mark a new decade of my life. It pushes you to be different, to feel new things. Like a snake shedding its skin, I think I will emerge out of this experience a different person."

FEAR OF TIME Right now, internationals represent half a million people in Denmark. By 2030, it could double. "Denmark needs to learn to live with this multiculturalism. They cannot take back all the decisions they made in the past and say that we need to go away. If they decide to make life harder for this half a million, it will just push them into politics, into making changes from within the system." Narcis believes that someday, we will see internationals in national politics. "At some point, all of us involved in politics, we will get citizenship. Then we will have access to run for parliament. If we're there, we can also be ministers. And then, maybe in 2050, we'll have the first prime minister who is not Danish." It seems that Narcis and his mission of making internationals more involved are unstoppable, that he will accomplish what he wants: to leave a mark on the world, something that would live on after him. "My biggest fear is time. The fact that it passes and I am not achieving enough, doing enough. But I can honestly say I haven't wasted any of my decades. On the contrary, everything I have done has pushed me in a certain direction." THE-INTL

"WELCOMING OUR FIRST DAUGHTER IS THE PERFECT WAY TO MARK A NEW DECADE OF MY LIFE. IT PUSHES ME TO BE DIFFERENT, TO FEEL NEW THINGS."

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COMMUNITY BUILDING IN EBELTOFT SOME WOULD ARGUE TO FEEL A PART OF ARTISTIC OR CULTURAL LIFE, IT WAS NECESSARY TO VISIT LARGER CITIES IN DENMARK. NOW THANKS TO MALTFABRIKKEN – THERE IS A NEW CULTURAL HOTSPOT IN EBELTOFT.

PHOTOGRAPHS MALTFABRIKKEN / VARIOUS

TEXT HEATHER STORGAARD

M

“Maltfabrikken has several layers, being both very local and very internationally-minded at the same time.” - Anne Märcher

MALTFABRIKKEN IS A cultural centre known as the People’s Factory in Ebeltoft. The town is most known for its tourism, popular among Danes and international visitors alike. However, with the new Ebeltoft I Udvikling (Ebeltoft in development) project, those living in the town and surrounding areas also feel a positive change in the community. I would now go as far as to argue that those living in the cities need to take a trip to Jutland’s countryside so as not to miss out on some of Denmark’s most exciting English language talks, projects and events. MANY EVENTS FOR ALL Earlier this year, Maltfabrikken hosted “Culture Impact Now!” in collaboration with The European Network of Cultural Centres and Trans Europe Halles. The result was an event in English, with speakers from Denmark, Europe and beyond. The main topics discussed were what culture means to the community in the wake of the covid-19 pandemic. Before Maltfabrikken became a cultural space, hosting an event of this scale would have been unthinkable in Ebeltoft, which shows how far this centre has come since it opened last year in the middle of the pandemic. I spoke with communications manager Anne Märcher, who said that “Maltfabrikken has several layers, being both very local and very internationally-minded at the same time.” Making communications bilingual so that both internationals and Danes felt welcome was essential to her. Being in a small town, she said the internationals got the chance to connect with locals very organically, in a way that they perhaps couldn’t in a city, which is something I have definitely experienced.

ARTIST RESIDENCIES Whilst browsing their Facebook page, I came across a talk by British artist Lily

Hunter Green, whose work focuses on honey bees. She took part in the Earthwise artist’s residency, another international project based on Mols, and agreed to chat with me. Lily told me that she was very much a city person who had previously been in Copenhagen but not in Jutland before the residency near Bogens in the Mols Bjerge National Park. Lily and I agreed that having spaces for cultural activities was very important, and as an artist, she was clearly impressed with the facilities available in eastern Jutland. “In the British countryside, we don’t have such a thriving art scene”, she told me and also talked about how international the residency had been, allowing her to meet and connect with Danes, Swedes, Norwegians, Finns and Germans. After hearing the stereotype about Danes being a bit cold, she was happily surprised to find a “really warm” welcome on Mols. She spontaneously collaborated with two Danish dancers she met at a talk in Aarhus and scientists from Aarhus University. Al-

MALTFABRIKKEN

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though her talk at Maltfabrikken mainly had been attended by Danes, she was also impressed with how keen they were to hear from international visitors.

HEATHER STORGAARD WRITER Heather Storgaard comes from Northern Scotland, grew

THE WAY FORWARD FOR SMALLER TOWNS

up in Switzerland, and lived

Although the number of internationals living in the eastern Jutland countryside is relatively tiny, artist residencies and cultural events in English allow a community of internationals and internationallyminded Danes to meet and connect. The coronavirus pandemic has led many people to question the necessity of city living, so it makes a lot of sense for smaller towns to build on this to create new or expanded communities. As a building, Maltfabrikken is a part of Danish heritage that the people of Ebeltoft were keen to preserve for the town. As a cultural space, it’s retained all of that local connection to eastern Jutland while building layers to create a clearly international direction. THE-INTL

MALTFABRIKKEN

in England and Germany. She met her Danish and soon-tobe British husband back in 2017, and they now split their time between Central Scotland and Helgenæs, a peninsula in rural Eastern Jutland. Languages and cultural studies are a big passion, leading Heather to pursue a degree in Culture and Heritage and a career in photography and translation. @heatherstorgaard


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FOOD ART

ALMOND SHORTBREAD DELICIOUS WITH COFFEE, YOU'LL FIND VERSIONS OF THIS SHORTBREAD THROUGHOUT MOST OF SOUTH-EASTERN EUROPE. PHOTOGRAPHS & TEXT: NATASHA LIVIERO / UNSPLASH

ALMOND SHORTBREAD (MAKES APPROXIMATELY 60 BISCUITS )

INGREDIENTS: 295g ground almonds 35g almond nibs 230 cake flour 75g castor sugar 226g cold butter, cubed 160g confectioners sugar

METHOD: #1 Set oven to 1500C #2 Grease two baking trays. #3 Toast the almond flour in a pan until lightly browned and fragrant. Set aside to cool. #4 Toast the almond nibs in the same pan until lightly golden. Set aside to cool. #5 Sieve the flour into a large bowl and add the cooled almond flour and sugar. Mix to combine. #6 Add the cold, cubed butter, and with your fingers, work it into the dry ingredients until the mixture re-sembles sea sand. #7 Add the cooled almond nibs and bring the mixture together, forming a ball. At this point, you can wrap the dough in cling wrap and refrigerate for a few days. #8 Divide the dough into eight pieces and roll into long strips approximately 1.5cm in diameter. #9 Cut each strip into 6cm lengths and gently shape into crescents. Place each crescent onto a baking tray, approximately 3cm apart. #10 Bake for 20-25 minutes or until light golden brown. Wait a few minutes before removing the short-bread onto a cooling rack as it breaks easily when hot. #11 While still warm, roll each shortbread in the confectioner's sugar and set it aside to cool completely. #12 Roll the cooled shortbread in confectioners sugar once again. Store in an airtight container. #13 Sieve a light dusting of confectioners sugar over the shortbread before serving.

NOTES: FOR A LESS SWEET OPTION, ONLY ROLL THE SHORTBREAD IN CONFECTIONS SUGAR ONCE COMPLETELY COOLED. THEN, TAP LIGHTLY TO REMOVE EXCESS SUGAR AND STORE. IF YOU FIND IT DIFFICULT TO SHAPE CRESCENTS, ROLL EQUAL-SIZED BALLS, FLATTEN SLIGHTLY AND BAKE AS DIRECTED. YOU CAN SUBSTITUTE ALMOND NIBS FOR ALMOND SLIVERS, ROUGHLY CHOPPED.

NATASHA LIVIERO - PASTRY CHEF Natasha is a recently qualified pastry chef who is South African by birth and Croatian by blood. She spent many years working for a wellness publication but did an about-turn at the beginning of 2020 when she joined a culinary school to fulfil a lifelong dream to study patisserie. She’s passionate about European pa-tisserie and loves spending time in the kitchen experimenting with recipes (while quibbling with her feline friends), and is always on the hunt for interesting new cookbooks.

natashaliviero

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WHAT HAPPENS AT JULEFROKOST

STAYS AT JULEFROKOST WRITER CONRAD MOLDON GIVES US A GUIDE TO JULEFROKOST PHOTOGRAPHS ISTOCK / CONRAD MOLDEN

TEXT CONRAD MOLDEN

O ON A HOT

June afternoon, I was in Sønderborg, Southern Jutland, performing stand-up comedy to a crowd of wonderfully drunk workers from a telecommunications equipment supplier. It was 26 degrees, Mexican-themed, but it was a Julefrokost (Christmas lunch party). And that's one thing we all need to understand about Julefrokost: It can strike at any time. This one was particularly mad because of COVID postponements, but it is not unusual for this special event to show its drunken face at random times of the year. Danes will use their bizarre week numbering system to sneak a Julefrokost into your life, even though it has not yet been Halloween. "There are many bookings this year," Helle will tell you. "So our Christmas party will be on Week 43." And you won't think much about it until you're eating duck with red cabbage before the clocks have even changed. Another thing to understand is that it is a great honour to be invited by a Dane to eat with them at their Christmas lunch, but it is also possible a Julefrokost may just happen to you. I was once walking with a big group of friends on a Friday evening, the group expanding as more and more randoms joined (Aarhus is a small city). Soon enough, I ended up in a stranger's apartment, eating svinekød with boiled potatoes. In such a scenario, it's best to say that you know Søren, and sure enough, there will be enough people that know a possible reliable-Søren that it won't seem suspicious. And let's be honest - it's Denmark, so even if they did discover an undercover svinekød-eater, they'd most likely just be interested in what you're doing here. However, there are taboos. Be aware that you will always be forced to eat some-

“One thing we all need to understand about Julefrokost. It can strike at any time.” - Conrad Molden

thing called ris à l'amande, a rice pudding dessert with whipped cream, sugar, vanilla, and chopped almonds. And, to make it exciting, there is a solo almond, somewhere in that mix, the finder of which will win a prize. However, if you sneak in your own almond and pretend that you found it in the food, the Danes will never talk to you again. That will be the end of your friendship. Absolutely do not attempt this. Apparently, there is a limit to their hospitality. Something else to avoid: don't tell them that nisse are "just elves". Here I agree. These mythological creatures from Nordic folklore are far more sophisticated than the American-import once-upon-atime German humanoids that decorate our globalised television screens. Nisse, do not hang baubles on the Christmas tree or bake you a nice apple pie. They engage in mischief such as tying cows' tails together, turning objects upside-down and breaking things. Nisse are real, they are called children.

Another Julefrokost tradition: you'll be forced to drink akvavit. Also known as "schnapps", this highly poisonous potion is distilled from grain and potatoes and pure evil. Just the smell from opening the bottle will make one's eyes begin to water. And your loving local friend will try to convince you that there are different flavours with distinct histories. But, sorry friend, I may not be from Denmark, but I do understand that every bottle of Aalborg Taffel Akvavit has the same flavour: benzine. So whether it is October or March, enjoy your Julefrokost experience. Do drink one courtesy shot of distilled evil, leave your almonds at home and here's a pro tip: find some fun facts to make your hosts think you are really integrated into Danish julehygge culture. "Did you know they haven't changed the recipe for Aalborg Akvavit since it was first made in 1846? Yeah, apparently they tasted it and just thought: wow, it's so delicious, definitely can't improve on this, let's keep this recipe for the next 175 years." THE-INTL

CONRAD MOLDEN WRITER & COMEDIAN Conrad is a 30+ father of two, performing in the Danish stand up scene. He got his big break with a national tour of his one-man show 'Danglish', which is streaming (along with its sequel) on the subscription service TV2 or his website. He is an amateur anthropologist, living amongst the Danes and reporting back to his international friends. He has ambitions to lær the dansk but after nine years thinks nodding and grumbling might be a more realistic survival tactic. His comedy is aimed at anyone seeking comfort, support or relief in this strange land. @ConradMolden.dk @conradmolden @ConradMoldenComedy @conradmolden

NOVEMBER 2021 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM


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where can i find a copy?

Don't miss picking up the latest issue at these public pick-up points around Denmark.

 PUBLIC PICK-UP POINTS ON ZEALAND SOCIAL BREW INTERNATIONAL HOUSE COPENHAGEN ART ESCAPE STUDIOS AMERICAN PIE ZOKU COPENHAGEN THE ENGLISH CORNER CAFE LOLLAND NEWCOMER SERVICE

VESTER FARIMAGSGADE 3 - COPENHAGEN GYLDENLØVESGADE 11 - COPENHAGEN BLEGDAMSVEJ 68 - COPENHAGEN SKINDERGADE 25 - COPENHAGEN AMAGERFÆLLEDVEJ 108 - COPENHAGEN TEATERGADE 22, NÆSTVED TORVET 3 - MARIBO

PUBLIC PICK-UP POINT ON FUNEN CAFÉ L’ILE

DALUMVEJ 3 - ODENSE SV

PUBLIC PICK-UP POINTS IN JUTLAND DOKK1 LIBRARY (INFORMATION DESK) INTERNATIONAL HOUSE NORTH DENMARK ESBJERG NEWCOMER SERVICE VEJLE NEWCOMER SERVICE HERNING BIBLIOTEKERNE BILLUND NEWCOME SERVICE IKAST-BRANDE NEWCOMER SERVICE SØNDERBORG NEWCOMER SERVICE

HACK KAMPMANNS PLADS 2 - AARHUS RANTZAUSGADE 4 - AALBORG TORVEGADE 23 - ESBJERG SKOLEGADE 1 - VEJLE ØSTERGADE 8 - HERNING KLØVERMARKEN 35 - BILLUND RÅDHUSSTRÆDET 6 - IKAST RÅDHUSTORVET 10 - SØNDERBORG

You can also read or download the latest issue online: the-intl.com

NOVEMBER 2021 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM


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HAPPY TEACHERS =

HAPPY LEARNERS PHOTOGRAPHS NORTH ZEALAND INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL

TEXT SHANI BISHOP, NORTH ZEALAND INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL

W

WE ALL KNOW that happy parents equal happy kids, but the same can be said for school. Happy teachers equal happy learners. In this article, we find out what makes North Zealand International School (NIS) such a happy place where the learner can thrive. Søren Jensen and Joanna Hansen, both teachers at NIS, share their stories and passion for teaching with us.

me something. I love to see an “ah-ha” moment cross a student’s face or read my class’s writing and see that they got it! In primary school, a class comes together like a family, and I enjoy that bond.

What’s the best thing about being a teacher? The best thing is being with children throughout the day. Every day is different, and it’s never stagnant. My aspiration for my students is for them to become lifelong learners.

SØREN JENSEN, MUSIC TEACHER AT NIS When you meet Søren Jensen, you feel this overwhelming passion for music and his students. He truly wants them to be the best they can be. Søren started teaching drums after gymnasium. Later, he enrolled at the prestigious Drummers Collective in New York City, which honed his skills as a professional musician. After studying music at Copenhagen University, he trained to be a music teacher and started teaching at NIS and NGG. In 2011 Søren wrote a book about playing the drums called ‘Kadaboum’, and it is used in music classes all over Denmark today.

What makes NIS special? That we are so international, the teachers have had similar experiences to the children, so they know what it is like to travel about and be at a new school in a new country learning a different culture. It provides a home and gives us one place where we have a shared culture. That shared understanding and culture make it an exceptional place to be. THE-INTL

Why do you like teaching at NIS? Classes are smaller at NIS, and because it’s private, I can teach classes my way to bring out the best in my students. For example, my music lessons in the international school are a great mix of music and culture, both highly valued here. The international students have seen and done a lot in their lives, so they are always open to challenges and enjoyable to teach. The IPC personal goals are very evident at NIS, especially respect for the teacher and each other.

SØREN JENSEN BRINGS HIS PASSION FOR MUSIC INTO THE CLASSROOM AT NIS. PHOTO CREDIT: SØREN JENSEN

What’s the best part of teaching?

JOANNA HANSEN, YEAR 6 TEACHER

Often it’s the internal barriers that stop students from performing at their best. I love helping students towards becoming the best musician they can be. It’s great working out how to transfer their energy as a class into creativity to produce something remarkable.

Joanna was born in the UK then moved to California when she was 13. She attended the University of California in Santa Barbara. Joanna earned her bachelor’s degree in English - later studying at the University of California in Irvine to achieve her teaching credentials before adding a specialism in maths later. During this period, she loved her placements in year 1, year two and year 5.

What events are you involved in at NIS? The Spring Concerts allow classes to showcase their musical ability, and it’s great to support the kids and see what they can achieve. I also enjoy being involved with International Day and going on overseas trips.

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What makes a ‘good day’ at school? A great day at school is when I see my class learning and enjoying their lessons. But, at the same time, they teach

I LOVE TO SEE AN “AH-HA” CROSS A STUDENT’S FACE - JOANNA HANSEN. PHOTO CREDIT: ROSENFELDT


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DRINK LIKE

THE DANES DO? PHOTOGRAPHS UNSPLASH / ISTOCK

TEXT SARAH REDOHL

Whether you prefer to stay sober or you’re the first to shout skål, there’s no denying that drinking is an important part of Danish culture.

A

ACROSS SCANDINAVIA ONE thousand years ago, neither a business deal nor a marriage could be formalised without alcohol. Moreover, not just one drink, but several, were required in Viking culture as a sign of “mutual trust and respect.” More than a millennium later, alcohol consumption remains an integral part of Danish culture. According to the European Commission, nearly 40 percent of Danish adults report regular heavy drinking. That’s nearly double the EU average and the highest in Europe. Even Danish youth top the list! A World Health Organisation report found that Danish teens consume the most alcohol in Europe within their age group. Alcohol consumption is so prevalent in Denmark that sobriety in social settings can sometimes feel isolating. Although this is probably true in many countries, it can feel exacerbated in cultures where heavy drinking is so common, and alcohol seems to be the social lubricant that greases one’s way into Danes’ social world. For usually reserved Danes, “[drinking] helps us lose control,” said Thomas Vinteberg, director of the critically acclaimed Danish film Another Round. Literally titled Druk (binge drinking) in Denmark, the film has been referred to as “a cinematic love letter to Denmark’s drinking culture.” Like many Danes, Vinteberg attributes Danes’ drinking habits to their Viking roots. DRUNKEN DANES AND SOBER SWEDES It’s true; alcohol played an important role in Viking culture. Ale was often consumed by both adults and children all day every day because it was safer to drink than water (though the alcohol content was much lower). And the drinking horns in which ale was often served? Considering they can’t be set down between sips, it’s safe to say they weren’t made for moderation. But modern-day Denmark’s Viking neighbours left the party long ago. According to the WHO report, 42 percent of Danish 15-year-olds have been drunk at least twice, compared to just 16 percent in Norway and 11 percent in Sweden. One theory behind this divergence is the strength of 19th-century temperance movements that raised alcohol prices while limiting access in Sweden and Norway. Those temperance movements never quite caught on across the Baltic and North seas; affordIF DANES' DRINKING HABITS ORIGINATE FROM THEIR VIKING ROOTS, THE EXPECTATION THAT EVERYONE PARTICIPATES MAY, TOO.

able alcohol can be purchased 24/7 on nearly every street corner in Denmark. But, high alcohol consumption comes with its own costs. According to the Danish Cancer Society (Kræftens Bekæmpelse), the overuse of alcohol in Denmark annually costs society 13 billion DKK and results in 3000 deaths. They’ve been advocating increasing the minimum legal age to purchase alcohol, but those policies seem about as popular among Danes as the 19th-century temperance movement.

ANOTHER ROUND Another side effect of Denmark’s drinking culture? The sense of isolation for those who choose to stay sober. Internationals have reported finding few non-alcoholic beverage options at the average Danish party; others report spending significant time defending their choice not to drink each evening. “Drinking is a sort of social contract among Danes,” wrote one respondent to a popular Reddit thread asking for alternatives to alcohol in Danish social situations. “It’s definitely part of our culture to expect everyone to take part in the social ritual of [getting drunk],” wrote another. However, most suggested doing one’s best to blend in: drink non-alcoholic beer, nurse a single glass of wine all night, disguise a glass of water with a slice of lime. Some may instead opt to do as the Danes do: drink more. In a 2016 study by the University of Southern Denmark, international students consistently reported seeing higher alcohol consumption in Denmark than they were used to. Their solution? Many adapted to the drinking culture among their Danish peers. A study from Aarhus University about cultural norms of alcohol use in Denmark summarised it well: “Other people expect that you are going to drink like them.” As one respondent said, it’s a nuisance if one person drinks more than everyone else. On the other hand, participants said alcohol consumption is accepted and expected in most situations (except driving, work, and some sports). So basically, if you want to drink as the Danes do, don’t drink more than others, but don’t drink nothing.

SARAH REDOHL JOURNALIST, WRITER, FILMMAKER Sarah is a journalist, writer, and filmmaker from the American Midwest. Although she holds a journalism degree from the University of Missouri, she’s been a natural-born storyteller since she could talk. Her work has taken her all over the world, from Amsterdam to Zambia and many places in between. She's travelled to more than 40 countries, living in several before settling down in Copenhagen with her partner and their two (well-travelled) cats. Prior to moving to Eu-

SHARE THE SKÅL If Danes’ drinking habits originate from their Viking roots, the expectation that everyone participates may, too. The Vikings believed alcohol to be a gift from the gods, and “just as the gods had shared it with humans, people were expected to share it with each other.” Perhaps there is a social cost to sobriety in Denmark, just as not speaking Danish or ignorance of local customs also come with a cost. I wouldn’t know; I drank like a Dane long before I moved to Denmark. But I believe whether you prefer to stay sober or you’re the first to shout skål should always be a personal choice - and I’ll bet most Danes would ‘cheers’ to that. THE-INTL

rope, Sarah worked in a variety of newsrooms, from print to radio, and taught multimedia journalism at her alma mater. @sarahredohl @sarahredohl @sarahredohl

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MY DANISH CUPBOARD EXPATS OFTEN SAY THAT REPATRIATION TO YOUR HOME COUNTRY IS THE HARDEST PART OF THE ADVENTURE. SHANI BISHOP SHARES HER REPAT JOURNEY WITH US. PHOTOGRAPHS ISTOCK / UNSPLASH

TEXT SHANI BISHOP

W

WHEN WE DECIDED to leave Denmark, I started stockpiling food. I collected boxes of fodselsdag boller (birthday rolls), rum kugle (rum balls), bags of rugbrød (rye bread) mix, Karlsen's chocolate-covered pebernødder (ginger nuts) from Irma and only available November and December, Wasa Frokost (a type of biscuit) and kanel (cinnamon). We have been slowly working our way through the readymade products. Everyone was gutted last week when the chocolate covered pebernødder ran out. Yes, I know you are meant to eat them at Christmas, but it seems a shame to only eat them then, so I bought five packets, and we ate them all summer. I promised my kids I would attempt to make chocolate covered pebernødder at Christmas, so we will see how that goes. Recently I made drømekage (dream cake) for a class meet up and krummer kage (Danish apple crumble) for a party. Everyone was eager to try both. Someone asked me if Danish pastries were better in Denmark than in the UK. I think they are different. The ones in Denmark look darker and bigger, almost a meal in themselves. The ones here look pale and are smaller. I think both are good in different ways, although I prefer the Danish ones. Once it gets colder, I'll start making all the Danish delights in my cupboard.

THE RISE OF BUSINESS One thing here that has surprised me, but maybe I never noticed before. Businesses, large and small, are pretty prominent in the UK. It starts at the airport with posters encouraging trade and is quite visible in everyday life. The innovation is most visible in supermarkets and book shops. Since we last returned in 2019, the vegan and vegetarian sections in chilled, frozen and dried have grown and are now huge. Being vegan or vegetarian used to be tricky here but no longer. There is an enormous number of products to choose from, all of which come from small businesses. We have only tried some 'non-fish fingers' so far, but I'm a foodie, so we will definitely be trying more. Another area is book shops. When you live abroad, the number and variety of books in English are limited and expensive. For children, it's usually J.K Rowling, Roald Dahl and David Walliams. When I first visited a bookshop, I was surprised by how many books there were by authors I'd never heard of or seen.

NOVEMBER 2021 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM

The influence of business is in schools too. In the month my eldest son has been at secondary school, he attended a business club where 20 students were selected to develop a business for profit and played a business game for the whole day. It wasn't like this at school when I was younger, but this is a good change.

NOISE AS PART OF THE CULTURE Societal attitudes to noise are definitely culturally based. If I had to put Denmark, Japan, and the UK on a continuum, Denmark would be at the silent end, Japan at the noisy end, and the UK somewhere in the middle. When you enter a shop in Japan, it is part of the culture for the shop assistants to say 'Irasshaimase' loudly, which means

"THERE IS AN ENORMOUS NUMBER OF PRODUCTS TO CHOOSE FROM, ALL OF WHICH COME FROM SMALL BUSINESSES." 'welcome to the shop'. When election time came around, a man and a woman would hang out of a minivan with microphones and yell campaign messages. In the city where I lived, they played music in the streets and had a siren testing system like Denmark. In the UK you hear music in shops sometimes and a tannoy occasionally in supermarkets. I think everywhere you live becomes your normal, so it's interesting to see how others live. THE-INTL


21

A SLICE OF PRIMARY SCHOOL LIFE IN DENMARK PHOTOGRAPHS ISTOCK / UNSPLASH

TEXT MONIKA PEDERSEN

S

SCHOOL IS SOMETHING almost all of us have experienced firsthand. Being part of a diverse mobile population, there will be varying ideas on schooling. If you are new to Denmark, it might be helpful to understand the Danish mindset towards schooling.

“Students are encouraged to ask questions and query the 'status quo'.” - Monika Pedersen

THE PRE-SCHOOL JOURNEY Children can start nursery school, ‘vuggestue’, at the very young age of 9 months until three years old. They then transition to kindergarten, ‘børnehave’ until six years old. The focus is on developing the basic foundations of social interaction, verbal and written communication, creative self-expression, coordination, and problem-solving in both institutions. Then, through free play, organized games, drawing and storytelling, a child’s educational pathway begins.

PRIMARY SCHOOL At the age of 6, students start primary school, otherwise known as ‘folkeskole.’ Students begin in 0 class, which is like a recap of the final kindergarten year, followed by the compulsory schooling years of class 1-9. Schooling is free unless parents opt for private options, where fees tend to be about 1000-2000kr per month. However, it is a competitive fee, as the aim is not to create elitism against Danish ‘everyone is the same’ values. In the early years of primary school, the focus continues to be on well-being, social development, and a deeper understanding of group dynamics. Unlike some other educational systems, it is not about testing, assessing, and benchmarking. Instead, students are encouraged to explore, be curious, and develop an interest in the world around them. Testing takes place only in latter years. This approach may take some international parents by surprise. It is important to note that Danish society is built on teamwork, collaborative decision making, and celebrating the efforts and successes of a group. This approach starts in these formative years and continues into adulthood and the workplace. Thus, it forms the cornerstone of Danish society.

THE CURRICULUM The curriculum has breadth. Languages are valued with Danish and English being taught, along with a third language; science and math; history and philosophy; art, music, cooking, and PE fill the schedule. There is also an emphasis on special project weeks. The regular schedule is suspended, and time is allocated for a trans-disciplinary approach to investigate concepts such as conservation, world poverty, climate change in mixed-aged groups. Students are encouraged to ask questions and query the ‘status quo’.

STUDENT WELFARE Time is allocated for extended or day trips for classes to team build. A primary class remains together for their entire folkeskole life, so close bonds are formed between the students. The parents of the class also develop a supportive network and often arrange events for the class. As a result, a sense of community exists, and class reunions are very common! The focus is on well-being with time allocated for breaks and lunch, so children can decompress or burn off excessive energy. The schooling system acknowledges the early start of 8:00 and the need to chunk up the day to retain focus.

LIFE SKILLS Life skills such as swimming and cycling

proficiency sessions are given high priority. The philosophy is to develop the whole child. Moreover, many schools do not have canteens, so students either bring a bagged lunch or order a meal online delivered at lunchtime. Students are responsible for collecting the ordered food and milk and cleaning up the classroom by sweeping the floor and removing the trash. This builds a sense of cleanliness, community and responsibility. To complement this thinking of whole child development, the amount of homework assigned is limited. Parents from specific countries often judge a school’s rigour by the discipline, academic standards, and amount of homework. And yet, in Denmark, little homework is issued unless it is for exam level classes. The belief is that the students have fulfilled the required academic hours within the day. After school is the time for clubs, activities, and family - this same ideology is seen amongst adults who maintain a strict work/life balance. The focus is on maintaining an excellent psychological and physical status. Some of these aspects may cause concern as an international, but statistics indicate that over 145 thousand students attend upper secondary school, 16-19. In the last three years, there has also been a steady increase in students attending university. Students are not disadvantaged; thus, it is worth trying a different approach. THE-INTL

MONIKA PEDERSEN INTERNATIONAL EDUCATOR Monika comes from the London area of the UK, where she worked in the state system and the international school system, as an English teacher of 11-18 students and then a section leader. She has also worked in Germany and now in Denmark. She has an overview of the British, International, and American educational systems and is currently learning about the Danish system. She has been in education for 32 years and continues to enjoy the profession. She has relocated to Copenhagen as she is married to a Dane. She enjoys jogging, waterside walks, and cooking. @monikapedersen @monikapedersen

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22

SPECIAL ASSISTANCE AT HOME OPTIONS AVAILABLE FOR RECEIVING SPECIAL ASSISTANCE AT HOME IN THE FORM OF A SUPPORT PERSON AND HOW TO NAVIGATE THE APPLICATION PROCESS.

PHOTOGRAPHS UNSPLASH / ISTOCK

TEXT SARA R. NEWELL / NIKOLAOS PAPADOPOULOS

P

PEOPLE WITH SPECIAL needs will often need assistance and support either continuously or periodically during their lives. For example, frequent hospital visits, sessions with doctors and medical practitioners, and medical emergencies. All of this can take its toll on the individual but also family members that support them. Consequently, family members also need assistance and support to continue to care for their loved ones. When a child or young adult under 18 needs special assistance at home, getting assistance and support from a person outside the home can benefit both child and family. A support person (støttekontaktperson) can be in the form of physical help (with motion impairment) or mental/emotional support (a confidante who they can talk to about personal issues). Assistance can also be provided to the family in regards to guidance or respite (aflastning). You can start the application procedure by contacting your local municipality and requesting a meeting with your child’s case worker (sagsbehandler). Sometimes it can take a certain amount of persistence to contact a case worker to request a meeting. Before the meeting, it can be a good idea to write down your child’s and family’s specific needs and why you require assistance from a support person. It can also be a good idea to talk to your child’s doctor, psychologist or another relevant specialist about your child’s needs. The case worker will ask for your consent to collect information from your child’s doctor or other healthcare specialists during the meeting. It is important to note that when you are with the case worker, you are clear and specific about your child’s individual needs so that the case worker can get a good overview of your family’s situation. If you decide to apply for a support person for your child, you do so in writing and ideally have accompanying support documents from relevant medical professionals. When processing your application, it is not unlikely that the case worker will request to speak to your child to assess your child’s particular needs and wishes (in the case of a non-verbal child, this doesn’t apply). Your child has the right to have someone present during any interview with a case worker. If the municipality approves your ap-

plication for a support person, it will likely take some time to find a support person who matches your child’s needs. In certain situations, it is possible to hire a support person the child already knows, such as a teacher or pedagog from your child’s school or a support person from a private support service company. While the term “support person” refers to support given to individuals of a younger age, a similar service that caters to the needs of adult individuals exists as well and is known as bostøtte. The application process for bostøtte follows the same general guidelines as that for a support person. In the case of individuals over the age of 15, consent from the child must be obtained (if able) to initiate the application process.

DELAYS, DENIAL AND APPEALS While the two services can be invaluable for people with individual needs, the application process can be frustrating, and it is not uncommon for an application to be automatically denied or otherwise delayed by the municipality. Moreover, municipalities can decline an application even if due process is followed to the letter.

NIKOLAOS PAPADOPOULOS is originally from Greece, but has been living in Denmark for a few years. With a Bachelor's degree in Economics and a Master's degree in Marketing from the University of Southern Denmark, along with considerable work and volunteering experience in several areas, he has always had a passion for creative writing. He now lives in Esbjerg and enjoys physical activities, especially in nature, exploring new places, and discovering new cultures and ideas.

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"WHILE THE TERM “SUPPORT PERSON” REFERS TO SUPPORT GIVEN TO INDIVIDUALS OF A YOUNGER AGE, A SIMILAR SERVICE THAT CATERS TO THE NEEDS OF ADULT INDIVIDUALS EXISTS AS WELL AND IS KNOWN AS BOSTØTTE." You have the right to appeal if your application is denied. It can be a good idea to contact DUKH, an organisation devoted to advising people with disabilities on their legal rights and advising on the assistance services applications process. As a last resort, hiring a private social worker can sometimes be helpful to assist with the official application process. If you are considering hiring a private social worker, or should you decide to hire a private support person for your child or yourself, it can be a good idea to contact relevant network groups for recommendations. THE-INTL Be sure to read this article about how to apply for disability assistance and support: https://www.the-intl.com/post/ applying-for-disability-assistance-and-support

SARA R. NEWELL is from Canada, went to high-school in Costa Rica, and has worked and studied in Iceland and Denmark. She is a disability rights activist and has a master's degree in Technological Business Development and Biomedical Engineering from Aarhus University. Sara has lived in Denmark since 2003, and lives with her husband and daughter. She hopes to contribute and share insights with others who have children with disabilities. https://www.linkedin.com/in/sararose-newell-b1904726 / https://m.facebook.com/groups/bakopomdepaarorende


23

COPING WITH EXPAT-GUILT EXPLORING THE WOES AND GROWTH OF EXPAT GUILT.

PHOTOGRAPHS UNSPLASH

TEXT AINA MASOOD

E

EVER FIND YOURSELF questioning your decision of moving to a new country, far away from your family and friends: your support system? Believe it or not, this is entirely normal. When we move to another country, the stakes are high, the expectations are grand, and the challenges seem insurmountable. But, having taken the plunge, doubt catches up with us. Did I make the right choice? Was it worth it? What about my friends and family? Would I be able to survive here? Should I move back? Can I do it? Is this even fair to my friends and family? We have all asked these questions, and while some of us have made peace with the decision, many of us still struggle with them. Expat depression is a common mental health issue among the international community, and research suggests that one of the major contributing factors is expat guilt. According to American Psychological Association (APA), guilt is a painful emotion that we experience when we feel like we have committed a wrong, have failed in an obligation and/or thought, said, or done something that reflects poorly on our beliefs and views about ourselves. Settling in and merging into a new culture and country takes time, months, or years. When the initial honeymoon period is over, and the reality starts to set in, we might find ourselves overwhelmed, unsure, insecure, lonely, and frustrated. To fulfil the image of a happy and satisfied international, we might end up hiding and invalidating our feelings. Further confusion is caused by having to live in a split reality. One reality is the life we are trying to build, and the other is the life we have left. Trying to keep our friends and family up-to-date and making new friends simultaneously is arduous and takes up a boatload of energy and time. Moreover, missing the big moments like birthdays, weddings, graduations and being unavailable to lend a shoulder, only adds to the guilt. WHAT CAN YOU DO TO MANAGE THE GUILT? Recognise that what you are feeling is guilt. Look for the signs of guilt in your

AINA MASOOD PSYCHOLOGIST Aina is the founder and CEO of R.A.I.N (Recognise, Accept, Investigate, Nurture), a company that helps universities and organisations take care of their colleagues and employees' mental health. Aina has completed her master's in clinical psychology from Pakistan. She has lived in the USA for 6 months and has been in Denmark for over a year. Passionate about mental health and destigmatising mental behaviour and dig deeper to see where it originates. For example, is it not talking to your family enough, or is it having difficulty managing the time zones? Accept that your situation has changed, and you have jumped across borders. It is bound to change your priorities, your relationships, and you. Change is hard but can be beautiful. Give yourself and your friends and family time to adapt to this change. Take your time to heal because making a move always requires giving certain things up, and you should allow yourself the time to heal from the things lost and left behind. Investigate the changes, the feelings, and the thoughts associated with the move. Ask your friends and family about what they would like to have, daily checkins or weekly calls, postcards, or pictures through social media. Try to make them a

part of the process, so they don’t feel left behind, and you don’t feel guilty for leaving them behind. Nurture the positive emotions and experiences. Try to express gratitude for the things you have and the opportunities of making new friends. Validating your feelings of being overwhelmed, loneliness, and fear is also essential to manage them better. Try to do activities that bring joy to your life, like cooking on a video call with your family or taking them on virtual trips around your new neighbourhood. Professional help is also an option if the move brings up emotions and experiences that are disturbing and too overwhelming to be dealt with on your own. It is also important to realise that seeking professional help can be very beneficial during, before or after a significant transition in your help. THE-INTL

health problems, she is working towards helping individuals and organisations be healthier, happier, and more productive. She accomplishes this by working with clients via Skype, conducting workshops/webinars with various organisations, and through research and writing. She is a professional photographer and uses her pictures to reflect on her daily life and shares them on her blog. A psychologist, writer, speaker, mental health advocate, photographer, explorer, volunteer, and a wife, Aina is making her way through the world and narrating the story of her life.

"CHANGE IS HARD BUT CAN BE BEAUTIFUL."

https://www.linkedin.com/ in/ainamasood/ https://www.instagram. com/ayena_reflections/

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JUTL AND

COMMUNITY BUILDING THROUGH ACTIVITIES AARHUS AND EASTERN JUTLAND IS HOME TO MANY INTERNATIONALLY-MINDED COMPANIES AND ORGANISATIONS THAT ALL CONTRIBUTE TO THE INTERNATIONALISATION OF THIS AREA. THIS MONTH WE INTERVIEW WRITER AND THE HEAD OF INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY TINY MAERSCHALK, WHO LIVES AND WORKS IN AARHUS.

PHOTOGRAPHS INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY / UNSPLASH.COM

TEXT INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY

I

FORENINGER AND FORENINGSLIV are key words in Danish society, and they are all about community, volunteering and diversity. The local foreninger or associations are the cornerstone of Danish culture and your opportunity to become part of local society and feel a sense of belonging.

“It is incredible how much the local sports association means for local society and brings people together.”

FORENINGSLIV, WHAT IS IT ALL ABOUT? I have to admit that I didn't know that much about Danish foreningsliv, how it is run, and the opportunities it holds when I moved to Denmark 20 years ago. Today, I am a strong advocate for the Danish clubs and associations and advise every international moving here to find a hobby and become a local club member. Ten years ago, I moved to Beder, 12 km south of Aarhus, where I found BederMalling Idrætsforening or BMI in short. BMI is the local area's sports association. It surprised me that BMI has about 3,400 members divided into 16 departments and activities. As a result, there is a wide range of opportunities for sports-oriented social gatherings in the local sports centre or at the local schools. As in Danish associations in general, in BMI, there is a solid voluntary community. Therefore, as a member of BMI, you get much more than just pure physical wellbeing. I feel that BMI delivers the good experiences that arise in the community with other people. This makes me look forward to coming to the weekly training and feel like participating in various events with other members of BMI. Experiencing the joy that a sports association like BMI can offer has a double meaning. I experience both the joy of practising the sport itself and the relationships that arise in connection with the sport. It is in-

credible how much the local sports association means for local society and brings people together.

RUN BY VOLUNTEERS Many Danish children and adults engage in organised sports activities, and it is an official political objective in Denmark that sports should be for everyone. Different to many other countries, volunteers run most sports clubs and associations in Denmark. This helps to keep the participation fee low so that everybody has the means to participate. Are these volunteers professional trainers? No, not necessarily. However, what they might lack in professional training skills is compensated for by a relentlessly radiating enthusiasm and love for the activity they are in charge of. Training styles will differ, though. I have to say that I believe that my current body movement instructor has watched the recent TV documentary on Jægerkorpset, an elite special operations force of the Danish Defence part of Special Operations Command. When we chit chat, we get ten burpees. A lack of commitment sends us on a run around the school. She takes her volunteer

training job seriously! My children, aged 5 and 10, participate in the local idrætsforening too. They have both chosen gymnastics with training at the local school's gym hall. Ella, my 10-year-old, bikes 600 m to school herself every Tuesday at 17:00. I accompany Ida, my 5-yearold, to her class on Wednesdays. As Ida's volunteer instructor is six months pregnant (say what!), parents are encouraged to assist. And everybody gladly does so, as this is an innate part of Danish culture. The kids don't question this and accept every single adult's instructions. I don't have any experience with gymnastics, so I stick mainly to setting up the equipment and turning on and off the music – I know my limits. Most local associations will round off the season with either a tournament or a show where the different sports display what they have been working on. This is usually one of the big days in the community, where social networking and togetherness are essential. Should you be interested in finding a club or association, then I can assist you. Fill out the form on https://internationalcommunity.dk/ClubsandAssociations to get started. THE-INTL

INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY OF AARHUS We of fe r a w ide ra ng e of events, seminars and online activities that help internationals get settled in Denmark. Learn more on our website or follow us on: www.erhvervaarhus.dk www.internationalcommu nity.dk @internationalcommunity Aarhus @internationalcommunity aarhus

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DEMOCRACY IN DENMARK IS A PRIVILEGE AND A DUTY

SUSAN JESSEN SPIELE LIBRARIAN Susan is a librarian at Roskilde Library, and in charge of

It is the chance to help shape the best kind of community in which you want to live – or to prevent it from becoming your worst nightmare. It starts locally, so check if you can vote!

the English section. She does English events all year; everything from expat dinners and pub quizzes, to karaoke nights

INSPIRING AND GLARINGLY RELEVANT HOW BEAUTIFUL WE WERE BY IMBOLO MBUE In a fictive African village, an American oil company has polluted the environment, children are dying, and the village is struggling to get justice. Finally, they decide to fight back, but how can they stand up against a mammoth company?

SHORT NOVEL, LONG IMPACT

TIMELY, BRUTAL AND GRIPPING

WA I T I N G F O R T H E BARBARIANS BY J. M. COETZEE

THE NEW WILDERNESS BY DIANE COOK

A Magistrate has run a

In the near future,

tiny frontier settlement

there is one natural

for decades, ignoring

preserve left called the

the impending war be-

Wilderness State. To

tween the barbarians

escape the wasted City

and the Empire whose

that is poisoning her

servant he is. However,

daughter, Bea signs up

one day interrogation

to join an experiment

experts arrive, and he

to see how humans can

becomes personally in-

interact with Nature,

volved.

living primitively.

EERIE AND THOUGHT PROVOKING

and book talks.

NEVER LET ME GO BY ISHIGURO KAZUO Hailsham is a boarding school for special children, but only years after they leave will they understand how special. 31-year-old Kathy is looking back and remembering her time there and the friend-

DID YOU KNOW?

ship and love stories

Many internationals can vote

with Ruth and Tommy.

in the upcoming local elections. For example, if you are from another EU country or have resided in the local community for at least four years. At Roskilde Library, you can join our Democracy and Pizza afternoon, where we talk and share our different election traditions from around the world. Democrazy and Pizza / Roskilde Bibliotekerne

NOVEMBER 2021 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM


26

NON–PROFIT STUDENT

ORGANISATIONS IN DENMARK ARE YOU GOOD ENOUGH FOR A TOP-TIER UNIVERSITY? YES, YOU ARE!

PHOTOGRAPHS ISTOCK

TEXT SKYLER BENTLEY HALL

T

THIS YEAR I had the privilege of participating at the Nordic Study Abroad Community Conference in the heart of Copenhagen, meeting over 120 Scandinavian students who aspire to study abroad. NSAC is a non-profit student organisation whose sole purpose is to inspire like-minded students about university studies in the US, UK, Canada, Europe, Australia, Asia and the Middle East. The destinations and possibilities are endless. GLOBAL DESTINATIONS Fifteen international universities were represented with a full day of presentations for students to enjoy, including Bocconi, ETH Zurich, Imperial, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, McGill, SciencesPo, St. Gallen, University College London, UBC, and many more. In addition, participants had the chance to connect with university admissions while interacting with students studying outside Denmark. Representatives from Project Access, Fulbright Denmark and Danish Students Abroad also offered tips to assist students with their academic journey. This inspiring event was organised by NSAC President Lasse Frank Voss and impressively dedicated and enthusiastic university students.

SKYLER BENTLEY HALL EDUCATIONAL CONSULTANT Skyler is originally from Canada, and after living in Switzerland for several years, she transitioned to Denmark with her husband and son -

NSAC ALUMNI

all proud Canadians. Skyler

Adding a personal touch, NSAC Alumni Jørn Emborg shared his insights. “Studying abroad opens up a door to the world, broadens one’s range of experiences, and can simply make for a more interesting life.” Jørn studied Engineering at the University of Cambridge, followed by two years at Yale University. Together with another Danish Cambridge Alumni, Jørn founded the Biotech-IT startup, BioLib.

has worked in the education sector for three decades and found her true passion for supporting students with their educational journey. As the Founder of Bentley Hall Educational Consulting, she ad-

BELIEVE IN YOURSELF Making a guest appearance was a Diplomat from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Klara Christensen. Klara is currently raising awareness about global climate conditions, she has strong beliefs about gender equality, and she makes great efforts to promote LGBT+ rights. Klara was an inspiration for these eager Nordic students, highlighting international studies at Oxford, Barnard College, London School of Economics and the University of Copenhagen, where she is now also teaching a course on Climate Diplomacy. “Often, the biggest obstacle for fulfilling our dreams is that most of us don’t believe enough in ourselves. It sounds cheesy, but I really think that’s a crucial component of success. And remember – the road is often full of detours and mishaps. I’ve applied for a thousand things that didn’t go through; you just need to keep going.”

INTERNATIONAL ADMISSIONS I also had the pleasure of collaborating with NYU Abu Dhabi to host a UK versus US Admissions presentation. Students were in-

NOVEMBER 2021 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM

formed about the difference in admissions procedures, including the Common Application Essay, UCAS Personal Statement, recommendation letters, financial aid, and numerous other tips when preparing a profile that stands out. Navigating university admissions can be complex, but we hoped to simplify matters with a few quick tips. Again, the inquisitive nature of the participants was impressive. Overall a thoroughly enjoyable experience, and kudos to the NSAC team for a job well done! THE-INTL

vises on career and university options globally. Skyler enjoys spending time with family, exploring new cultures, and embracing the hygge lifestyle in beautiful Denmark. bentleyhall.ca instagram.com/skylerbent

❝We were happy to participate in this year’s NSAC conference and meet Scandinavian students who were eager to learn about the global study opportunities NYU offers. The questions and comments we heard from students showed that learning about other cultures and having a global mindset is probably more needed in today’s world than ever before.❞ - Zsuzsanna Kovacs, Outreach Officer, NYU Abu Dhabi

leyhall/ facebook.com/skyler.bent leyhall


27

STAND UP AND BE COUNTED PART 3: LOCAL AND REGIONAL ELECTIONS PHOTOGRAPHS ISTOCK

I

TEXT NARCIS GEORGE MATACHE

IN THE TWO earlier editions of The International, I have presented the local and the regional councils. In about two weeks from now, you will be able to go and use your right to vote to obtain representation. The system has given us the tools (power to vote and candidate) to influence the mechanisms (the local and regional governments) that hold rights over our daily lives. We, as nonDanes, face many problems in Denmark which could be solved at a local and regional level through coordinated action and active involvement. There are 98 local councils and five regional councils in Denmark. Therefore, one would expect at least one international candidate for each council. Unfortunately, out of the 20,000 (on average) candidates (all over Denmark), less than 20 are internationals. Moreover, 10% of the Danish population is non-Danish (without citizenship), yet only 0.1% of the candidates are non-Danish. Fair representation. Not so much. The situation has been worse in the previous electoral rounds (2013 and 2017). In 2013, there were zero international candidates. In 2017, I ran for a regional council and three others for local councils. My main reason to run back then was to break the ice and convince others to participate in local and regional politics. Today, we have almost 20 candidates. I have spent an unimaginable amount of my free time talking to hundreds of non-Danes about getting politically involved. It was hard. There is little trust in the idea of “politics”, and knowledge about it is scarce. The idea to expose yourself publicly and gather the community around you can scare people as it feels like a monumental task. Being the first to do it in your community requires nerves of steel. So please, if you can, give a helping hand to the ones that made a step forward. Even a good word can do wonders. THE-INTL

WHO CAN VOTE?  European Union, Norway and Iceland citizens (from the moment you receive a yellow card).  People from outside European Union that arrived before 16 November 2017.  People from the United Kingdom that arrived before 31 January 2020.

16 NOVEMBER

NARCIS GEORGE MATACHE POLITICIAN Born in 1990 in a village in the north-east of Romania, Narcis made Aalborg his new home since 2009. Smitten by the Danish model, he decided to get involved in the local community leading to him becoming a strong voice on the topic of usage of the local political rights by the internationals. In

WHEN, WHERE AND HOW CAN YOU VOTE?  The voting day is on 16 November 2021. In your mailbox (4 days earlier), you will receive an election card (valgkort) that will indicate where your voting section is. If you don’t

Danish citizen to run for regional elections and to represent Denmark in the Council of

receive an election card, go with your yellow card to the

Europe. He holds or held lead-

nearest school, and there you will receive an election card.

ership positions in European

You vote by putting an “x” on the side of the candidate that

Youth Denmark, Europabev-

you support. You can only put one “x” on each voting list

ægelsen, Socialdemokrati-

(local and regional) (basically, you have 2 “x”). "As a local patriot with a global mindset it’s important for me that the international community is involved in the election and that we as a municipality focus on this community. That’s why I want to establish a public international school in Aalborg." - Lasse Frimand Jensen, candidate for Aalborg City Council

2017, he became the first non-

 If you don’t have time to vote on 16 November 2021, you can vote earlier. In the time between 5 October and 12 November 2021, you can go with your yellow card to the

et Nørresundby, DSU Aalborg, and Frit Forum International.

closest “bibliotek” or “borgerservice” and vote there. The

www.facebook.com/Narcis

voting procedure is a bit different as you need to write the

George.Matache/

name of the candidate. You will receive two envelopes (a blue

https://www.linkedin.com/

one for the local council and a yellow one for the regional

in/narcisgmatache/

council). You can write one name inside each envelope.

LAST WEEK IN

DENMARK

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REVENGE TRAVEL “WHILE ‘REVENGE TRAVEL’ IS THE HOT NEW TERM, IT EXPLAINS EXACTLY WHAT TRAVELLERS HAVE BEEN SAYING SINCE THE PANDEMIC STARTED. WE WILL NO LONGER TAKE FOR GRANTED THAT THERE WILL ALWAYS BE A FLIGHT TOMORROW AND AN OPEN BORDER WAITING TO GREET US. WE WILL MAKE UP FOR THE LOST TIME AND EXPERIENCES WITH A VENGEANCE.” - KONRAD WALISZEWSKI- CO-FOUNDER AND CEO OF TRIPSCOUT.

PHOTOGRAPHS UNSPLASH / ISTOCK

TEXT OPHELIA WU

A

AS BORDERS SLOWLY open with fewer restrictions, how do you feel about it? After a standstill of nearly two years, what do you hear most among your peers? “Gosh, I miss travelling”. People travel for all sorts of reasons. Some seek adventure in the unknown, some want a change of scene, some find inspiration through culture, art, and historical heritage. Of course, it’s always nice to explore a new city, and we all have that wanderlust bug.

THE FEAR OF MISSING OUT After the restriction comes the revenge travel. What is revenge travel? Have you heard of revenge buying? “The phenomenon was first verified in China in the 1980s …describes the sudden demand for foreign branded products after China’s opening to international trade in 1976 … occurred because the Chinese had been deprived of purchasing western products for many decades due to poverty and deprivation during the Cultural Revolution.” 1So it’s an increase in demand after deprivation. It is only natural that we crave the missing thrill of an expedition, the scent and air of a foreign place, and immerse in different cultures after being deprived for long. There is also a sense of FOMO and lots of catching up entailed- what has changed? Have new cafes and restaurants been popping up in a once buzzing city? How have your loved ones who are in a different country been? Very few would say no to any travel opportunities presented to them if budget is not an issue. During the lockdown, some probably had saved up more than they usually would- hence a bigger budget for travelling when allowed. According to Reuters, following the announcement of lifting COVID-19 travel restrictions in the United States, travel websites reported searches related to international travel to the United States spiked 48%, a 28% increase in UK travellers and a 24% increase in French travellers searching for hotels in the United States, comparing Oct. 8-10 to Oct. 15-17.2 Echoing Co-founder and CEO of travel app Tripscout Konrad Waliszewski said while ‘revenge travel’ is the hot new term…we are no longer going to take for granted that there will always be a flight tomorrow and an open border waiting to greet us. We will make up for the lost time and experiences with a vengeance.3

OPHELIA WU FASHION CONSULTANT & JOURNALIST els, camping and nature exploring getaways. “We’re seeing the biggest excitement for post-pandemic revenge travel initially to the sun and sand destinations,” Waliszewski said. “Everyone has had a hard year, so while they’re craving new cultures and adventures, they want to give themselves a much-needed break first… People are most excited to revenge travel to places where they can spend a lot of time outdoors without a mask.” Denmark, a country known for its variety of nature options, has seen a surge in domestic tourism too. According to a survey in August 2021 on the website statista.com, between January 2019June 2021, the number of international and domestic tourist arrivals has significantly changed trends. The lockdown also allowed space and time for industry stakeholders and travellers to rethink what it means to travel again when borders reopen and how they want to travel. What is the meaning of travelling for you now? And that is a question only you know the answer to. Wherever you revenge travel to next, enjoy and stay safe. THE-INTL

The pandemic is not over yet, but we see a whole new world emerging on the horizon. As revenge travelling surged, the preferences of travels had evolved since. Industry experts and travel websites predicted tourism trends for 2022, pointing to a new direction: sustainable travel, local community connection, road travels, domestic trav"SINCE THE END OF 2020, WE WERE SEEING A LARGE INCREASE IN FAMILY REUNION BOOKINGS FOR THE 2021–2022 HOLIDAY SEASON, WITH A 17% INCREASE COMPARED TO THE 2019 HOLIDAY SEASON. THIS SHOWS US THAT FAMILIES ARE REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO RECONNECTING AFTER SO MUCH TIME SPENT APART AND COMING TOGETHER FOR THE HOLIDAYS, AS SO MANY PLANS WERE CANCELLED IN 2020." - CAROLYNE DOYON, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF CLUB MED NORTH AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

NOVEMBER 2021 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM

Kong, Ophelia has a diverse background and upbringing. She moved to Copenhagen in 2019 after 10 years of living in London. Her fashion and journalism career began in 2007 at ELLE Hong Kong magazine, and later on as an online stylist at Net-A-Porter.com in the UK; she has worked with all sorts of creatives, brands and celebrities globally. She now works on everything fashion and communicationrelated. With her love of trav-

Lins, S. et al. (2021) ‘From panic to revenge: Compensatory buying behaviours dur-

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ing the pandemic’, International Journal of Social Psychiatry. Available at: https:// journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/00207640211002557 (Accessed: 21/October/2021) 2

A WHOLE NEW WORLD

L i ke he r hometow n Hong

https://www.reuters.com/world/us/international-travel-searches-spike-after-us-

moves-ease-curbs-kayak-2021-10-18/ https://www.huffpost.com/entry/revenge-travel-future_l_6052b724c5b638881d29a416

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elling and places her work brought her to, people she met from all walks of life inspired her to start her own business M for Minimal: a place to raise the awareness of going back to basics through conscious consumption and mindfulness with a touch of spirituality - something she has been practising since her teenage years. @opheliawu @mforminimal.mfm @opheliawu


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DANISH SHIPPING A MASSIVE INDUSTRY FOR A SMALL NATION.

PHOTOGRAPHS ISTOCK

TEXT MARIANO ANTHONY DAVIES

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THE VIKINGS CAME

from modern-day Denmark, Norway and Sweden – collectively known as Scandinavia. Their ability to build seaworthy ships allowed them to settle in Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales, Greenland, North America, parts of Europe and beyond. Their ship designs and access to oak were the keys to their success. Although the construction methods remained the same, several types of ships were produced and developed in the Viking period. The longship is the most well-known of these, and those of the later Viking Age was highly specialised vessels constructed to reach high speeds and transport troops. Their long, narrow shape made them highly manoeuvrable and fast, but this also meant a limited cargo capacity.

DANISH SHIPPING The Danish Shipping Organisation was founded on 17 January 1884 in Copenhagen. The founding fathers all belonged to a group of industrious and enterprising shipowners who ventured into the steamship business. They did that at a time when sailing ships were still a significant majority in Denmark. To best protect their joint interest, they formed the Steamship Owners’ Organisation. Half of the members of this trade and employer organisation in 2021 own ships registered in Denmark, and the other half run their activities in Denmark under other flags of State. There are over 90 members, and the Maersk Group is by far the biggest and has grown into a leading global group.

THE JOURNEY TOWARDS MODERN SHIPPING Captain Peter Mærsk Møller took part in one of the most significant changes in shipping - the move from sail to steam in the late 1800s. Born in 1836, on the island of Rømø, Peter Møller was given the middle name Mærsk after his mother, Kirsten Pedersdatter Mærsk, whose family originated from West Slesvig. However, the name Mærsk can be traced back to 1617, to Anders Nielsen Mersch, who lived in Ballum, just south of Ribe. Peter Mærsk Møller first went to sea as a cabin boy in 1850 and passed his mate’s examination in 1855. After gaining experience both on land and on the seas, he took

MARIANO ANTHONY DAVIES PRESIDENT & CEO OXFORD BUSINESS SERVICES APS Mariano has over 40 years up a position with Jeppesen, a leading ship owner in Dragør, just south of Copenhagen. Not only did he captain Mr Jeppesen’s ships, but he also became his son in law, when he married Anna in 1864. They had ten children together. Arnold Peter Møller (1876-1965) and his father Captain Peter Mærsk Møller founded what would become A.P. Moller Maersk in 1904. Before this, Arnold Peter Møller had worked in Denmark, England, Germany and Russia. Initially, the family business was mainly concerned with shipping but later diversified. Mr Møller founded Maersk Line in 1928 and acquired the company’s first five tankers that same year. He also oversaw the company’s expansion abroad, starting in the United States in 1919 and establishing offices in Japan, the UK, Thailand, Hong Kong, and Indonesia. To enhance the company’s portfolio. In addition, Mr Møller established a series of other businesses in the shipbuilding, agriculture and retail sectors. In 1962, he was awarded a concession to explore for and extract raw materials from the Danish subsoil - an activity that eventually led to the formation of Maersk Oil that started an era

to accelerate the growth of the A.P. Møller Group beyond expectation.

global experience as a bus ness executive. He spent ten years with KPMG, so far thirty

THE AP MØLLER FOUNDATION Arnold Peter Møller secured his family’s continued ownership of the company that he built and secured by establishing a foundation that now controls most of the shares in A.P. Møller - Mærsk A/S. When Arnold Peter Møller passed away in 1965, his son Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller assumed chairmanship of the family’s foundations. Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller (1913–2012) was a leader in the global shipping industry for more than half a century and played the most significant role in the growth and development of the A.P. Moller – Maersk Group, which is now one of the global leading shipping companies. His insistence on including oil exploration within their business portfolio cemented their position as a robust global player. Danish merchant shipping is the seventh-largest globally in terms of tonnage and the fourth largest within the EU. This Danish maritime cluster, known as Blue Denmark, accounts for approximately 25% of all Danish export. THE-INTL

years with British Chambers of Commerce (while also running Oxford Business Services ApS). He is a British citizen, who grew up in Kent, went to boarding school in Sussex and has a British university education. He has been married to a Dane for over 45 years and has held over 150 official anti-Brexit speeches since 2016. He both speaks and writes Danish without difficulty. oxford-business.com

"CAPTAIN PETER MÆRSK MØLLER TOOK PART IN ONE OF THE MOST SIGNIFICANT CHANGES IN SHIPPING - THE MOVE FROM SAIL TO STEAM IN THE LATE 18OOS. BORN IN 1836, ON THE ISLAND OF RØMO, PETER MØLLER WAS GIVEN THE MIDDLE NAME MÆRSK AFTER HIS MOTHER, KIRSTEN PEDERSDATTER MÆRSK, WHOSE FAMILY ORIGINATED FROM WEST SLESVIG."

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PETS IN TRANSIT PHOTOGRAPHS ISTOCK / UNSPLASH.COM

TEXT TAREK ABU SHAM

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TRAVELLING WITH OUR pets is something we all dream of doing, but rules and regulations for animal transport can be daunting and challenging to understand, often preventing us from taking our furry family members along on trips. Travel providers often place several restrictions on pet travel and animal transport in general, including the type of carrier allowed, weight and number of pets, type of pet, etc. Frequently carriers have different restrictions, as do origin and destination countries. If only it were simple to understand! According to the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration, travelling with pets is classified as "non-commercial relocation". This means that the pet is being moved because it travels with the owner. In addition/or the pet may not be sold.

TAREK ABU SHAM CEO & FOUNDER OF MYPETERINARIAN Tarek was born in Amman, Jordan and from an early age has had a love for animals. He met his spouse in Amman

TRAVELLING WITH PETS ABROAD Travelling abroad with your pet requires advanced planning. First, you should check regulations for both the origin and destination countries, especially any vaccination, pet passport, deworming and veterinary certificate requirements. MyPeterinarian offers virtual consultations, an excellent way to check in with our veterinarians before any planned travel to ensure your pet is healthy and travel-ready. Our veterinarians can also pay a house call to administer any needed vaccines, like the rabies vaccine, which is a requirement for cats and dogs in the EU. Within and to or from the EU, your pet must have an EU pet passport. Check out our website for more info on the EU pet passport and how to get one.

ARE YOU GOING TO FLY? Airlines have different rules for pet transportation. Some allow pets in the cabin; others only allow carriage in the cargo hold. Some, like RyanAir, do not transport pets at all, except for guide or service dogs.

PETS IN A CABIN (THE MOST COMMON REQUIREMENTS) The weight of your pet, together with the

and then soon embarked on an expat lifestyle that took bag/carrier, must not exceed 8kg. The carrier must be used explicitly for animal transport (well ventilated, made of robust and solid material and waterproof) and should comply with the airline's dimension requirements. In addition, your pet must be able to stand up, turn around and lie comfortably in its bag/carrier. Although some guidelines are the same, each airline also has its own. Therefore you should avoid possible complications by reading the specific guidelines of the airline you'll be using before travelling.

PETS IN THE BAGGAGE HOLD (THE MOST COMMON REQUIREMENTS) The transport box must be made of strong, solid material. In addition, the bottom of the transport box must be covered with liquid-absorbent material such as, e.g. a blanket. Some airlines, such as SAS, also allow newspapers to absorb; others do not (e.g. Norwegian). If there are wheels on the transport box, they must be removed or locked. The transport box must be equipped with two bowls for water and food or a bowl di-

NOVEMBER 2021 - WWW.THE-INTL.COM

him to Dubai, Prague, and

"AIRLINES HAVE DIFFERENT RULES FOR PET TRANSPORTATION." vided into two sections. If your pet weighs more than 14kg, it must be transported in a separate transport box. The pet must be able to stand up, turn around and lie comfortably in the transport box. If you're like most people, you'd probably want your pet right next to you in the cabin, but this is not always possible, so plan in advance and be prepared! Even if you do everything according to regulations and guidelines, you still need to keep your pet's wellbeing front and centre. While you may need a vacation, your pet may be better off at home under the care of one of our MyPeterinarian staff members, especially if your pet is young, old, super hyper, or has a lot of travel-related anxiety. We offer a great selection of pet care packages and a wide range of services. So travel with your pets only when it is essential. THE-INTL

now Copenhagen. Originally a veterinarian, Tarek reinvented himself professionally and decided to launch his own company. W it h M Y P E T E R I NA R I A N , Tarek has combined his veterinary experience with his entrepreneurial spirit. MyPeterinarian cares for pets in the Copenhagen area, offering pet sitting, walking, veterinary services and more to come soon. www.mypeterinarian.com


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Good advice Good habits There is still a lot you can do to avoid infection

Get vaccinated

Stay at home and get tested if you experience symptoms

Keep your distance

Open windows and doors and ventilate your home regularly

Wash hands frequently or use hand sanitiser

Clean thoroughly and regularly, especially surfaces that are touched by many people

1 July 2021

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engelsk

sst.dk/en