Sami Reindeer Herding Family in Northern Norway

Country

Norway

Favourited 491 times


  • rating

    Host rating

  • feedbacks

    Feedback

    11  

  • last activity

    Last activity

    18/09/2019

  • facebook friends

    Nº of Facebook friends

    593

  • Last email replied

    Reply rate

    96.9 %

  • Last email replied

    Average reply time:

    within 20 days

  • Badges

    Super Host
    Facebook verified
Contact Register
  2019 

 Min stay requested: 1 month or more

J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
  • Description

    Description

    PLEASE READ OUR ENTIRE PROFILE BEFORE APPLYING. THERE ARE MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS AND INSTRUCTIONS FOR SENDING US AN APPLICATION IN OUR PROFILE BELOW.

    Unfortunately, because we receive so many applications, if you don't send an application according to our instructions below, we can't accept it. Thanks for understanding ☺️

    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Hello! Thank you for your interest in our profile! We are a family of Sami reindeer herders living in Varangerbotn, northern Norway.

    Our family consists of:
    Myself (Ellen, the mom)
    Jon Andreas (dad)
    Kids : Nils Joavnna and
    Sirianne
    3 Dogs
    10,000 Wild Reindeer ☺️

    We live in a naturally beautiful area, with many outdoor activities available all throughout the year. Between our two districts we have over 10,000 reindeer. Because our work is with wild animals, our work depends on what the herd is doing which changes at different times of the year.

    So, we have developed this list to show you what the 2019 will entail and what a volunteer’s work will look like. The monthly list shows the big things, while the “General List” that follows are things we need help with all year long.

    Please note, our family works like a team, so in all of these jobs you will almost always be with someone ☺️
    We always have room for carpenters!
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    AUGUST 2019: Carpenter needed and working with the reindeer
    We will start to build a small grillhouse, which is a really small outdoor house where you can have a fire and cook food. We need someone with previous experience in carpentry to help us with this.

    Before we go to the reindeer fence, we bake a lot of bread and cakes to last us the entire stay. This way, we don’t have to think about basic food needs and we have lots of homemade goodies for the long days ☺️

    During the middle of August, we will start our work earmarking Ellen’s reindeer. This is a lot of fun, but the days are long and are physically demanding because we are physically handling wild reindeer. You will definitely feel the work every day after, and maybe get some more muscles! The earmarking period is usually about three weeks long.

    IMPORTANT: Please note that we will also be slaughtering some reindeer. You will NOT be asked to kill any reindeer, but you will see them die via a knife to the base of the skull (which paralyzes them) and then a cut to the throat to drain the blood. We will then skin and butcher the reindeer, and may ask for some help with this. After taking the meat back home, we will need to cut it down into smaller chunks that we can easily pull out of the freezer to eat. You will be expected to help cut down the meat. We want to give people a heads up on this so you know what you’re getting into!

    August is a great time of year to pick arctic cloud berries, which are DELICIOUS! We pick lots of them and make jam for the year. Beware, August still has a lot of mosquitos!
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER 2019: Work with reindeer
    Before we go to the reindeer fence, we bake a lot of bread and cakes to last us the entire stay. This way, we don’t have to think about basic food needs and we have lots of homemade goodies for the long days ☺️

    During the middle or end of September, we will start our work earmarking Jon Andreas’ reindeer. This is a lot of fun, but the days are long and are physically demanding because we are physically handling the wild reindeer. You will definitely feel the work every day after, and maybe get some more muscles! The earmarking period is usually about two or three weeks long.

    IMPORTANT: Please note that we will also be slaughtering some reindeer. You will NOT be asked to kill any reindeer, but you will see them die via a knife to the base of the skull (which paralyzes them) and then a cut to the throat to drain the blood. We will then skin and butcher the reindeer, and may ask for some help with this. After taking the meat back home, we will need to cut it down into smaller chunks that we can easily pull out of the freezer to eat. You will be expected to help cut down the meat. We want to give people a heads up on this so you know what you’re getting into!

    September is the best time of year to pick lingonberries and make lingonberry jam, which is AMAZING with the reindeer meat!
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    NOVEMBER & DECEMBER 2019: Work with reindeer and mechanics
    In November we will be going to the reindeer fence again to separate the reindeer herds. The days are long and cold, down to -25 degrees Celcius. We are usually at the fence for about two weeks.

    Before we go to the reindeer fence, we bake a lot of bread and cakes to last us the entire stay. This way, we don’t have to think about basic food needs and we have lots of homemade goodies for the long days ☺️

    IMPORTANT: Please note that we will also be slaughtering some reindeer. You will NOT be asked to kill any reindeer, but you will see them die via a knife to the base of the skull (which paralyzes them) and then a cut to the throat to drain the blood. We will then skin and butcher the reindeer, and may ask for some help with this. After taking the meat back home, we will need to cut it down into smaller chunks that we can easily pull out of the freezer to eat. You will be expected to help cut down the meat. We want to give people a heads up on this so you know what you’re getting into!

    We also need help preparing our snowmobiles and ATVs for winter. To do this, we need people comfortable with hauling a trailer. Also, mecahnics and aspiring mechanics are very welcome at this time to help Jon Andreas with the snowmobiles and ATVs.

    Now, we start to get complete darkness!
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    JANUARY 2020: This month I am looking for a couple.
    Reindeer work
    In January we still have complete darkness. We will be working outside with the reindeer in a fenced area, separating the herds. The days will be long and it can reach -35 degrees Celcius. We physically handle the reindeer, so the work is very physically demanding. Because of the time of year, this work can be very difficult.

    IMPORTANT: Please note that we will also be slaughtering some reindeer. You will NOT be asked to kill any reindeer, but you will see them die via a knife to the base of the skull (which paralyzes them) and then a cut to the throat to drain the blood. We will then skin and butcher the reindeer, and may ask for some help with this. After taking the meat back home, we will need to cut it down into smaller chunks that we can easily pull out of the freezer to eat. You will be expected to help cut down the meat. We want to give people a heads up on this so you know what you’re getting into!

    It will be a great time of year to see the northern lights:

    We need someone to help with the new cabin we are building. We will be painting the inside/staining. No previous experience necessary, but if you have handled a paint brush before and are detail-oriented, that's a huge plus!

    We sometimes drive snowmobiles out to check on the reindeer herds. It's really nice to be in the mountain.
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    APRIL 2020: We need a carpenter, and it's the best time to be in the mountain!
    In April we need someone with previous work in carpentry whether professionally or with a natural gift. We have a cabin 40km away by snowmobile in the mountains that’s built, but just needs the finishing touches.

    Knowledge of power tools, measuring, and building is a must. Our family will live in the cabin during this time and we’ll probably all be there for about two weeks. We think this work will take about one week to complete.

    This is a fantastic time of year for ice fishing, skiing, and snowmobiling! We spend a lot of time in the mountain overnight as a holiday. At the end of April, the reindeer start to give birth to calves!

    It would be great to have a couple for this month!
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    GENERAL WORK: All Year Long
    We will need help with the following on a regular basis:
    • Cooking and Baking
    • Cleaning and Organizing
    • Childcare (no more than a few hours at a time)
    • Driving
    • Walking our three dogs
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS
    • Minimum age of 25
    •. You did at least one Workaway stay before
    • One month minimum stay
    • Driver’s License
    • You like children
    • Fun and outgoing attitude
    • Sense of humor a BIG plus ☺️
    • In good physical shape
    • Great communication skills
    • Hardworking, responsible, and flexible with work
    • Ability to eat reindeer meat (most of our meals)
    • You MUST be a self-starter. If there’s not something going on, it’s really nice to have someone that just starts cleaning or doing small tasks to help out.
    • Good memory to help Ellen remember things that need to be done!
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    TO APPLY:
    Please send us a message with the following information:
    • THAT YOU READ OUR ENTIRE PROFILE AND MEET OUR MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS. Please include this first. We get so many messages on a daily basis that aren’t personalized, so unfortunately if you don’t include this, we can’t accept your application.
    • A few sentences about yourself and where you’re coming from
    • Why you want to volunteer with us
    • How long you intend to stay (one month minimum) and dates
    • Previous Workaways and past work experiences
    • Language Skills
    • Allergies or dietary restrictions
    • If you are available for a Skype interview before being accepted
    • Anything else you want us to know!
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Thank you so much!

    We hope to hear from you soon,

    Ellen, the family, and all the reindeer ☺️

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    Gardening
    Building
    Babysitting / child care
    General Maintenance
    Cooking / shopping
    Help in the house
    Animal care
    Language practice

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    You will be living with a Sami family (the Indigenous people living in northern Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia). You will learn about Sami culture, history, and language. We hope that you will take away new knowledge of what it's like to be part of traditions that are thousands of years old. Reindeer herding is such a complex job. You always have to pay attention to the weather. Many people forget that we aren't herding domesticated animals. These are wild reindeer which can make our job very difficult at times. We love our culture and traditions and are excited to teach more people about what life is like for us ☺️

  • Help

    Help

    You can see all of the help we need in the monthly breakdown on our profile above. Here is a quick summary of what we need:

    JANUARY 2020: Reindeer work
    FEBRUARY 2020: General housework, feeding reindeer in the mountains.
    MARCH 2020: General housework, Taking care of 8 puppies
    APRIL 2020: We need a carpenter
    MAY 2019: We need a painter
    JUNE & JULY 2019: Painting and clearing trees, repairing the reindeer fence
    AUGUST 2019: Carpenter needed and working with the reindeer
    SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER 2019: Work with reindeer
    NOVEMBER & DECEMBER 2019: Work with reindeer and mechanics

    GENERAL WORK: All Year Long
    We will need help with the following on a regular basis:
    • Cooking and Baking
    • Cleaning and Organizing
    • Childcare (no more than a few hours at a time)
    • Driving
    • Walking our three dogs

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    Norwegian, English, Sami

  • Accommodation

    Accommodation

    You will sleep in your own bedroom. Our house is set up like a townhouse which we own both parts of. We live on one side of the house and our volunteers live on the other. You have access to two kitchens and two bathrooms that you'll share with us ☺️

    We also have a car for volunteers to drive, and you can borrow that on your two days off per week if you'd like to go somewhere.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We live near the sea, and there are many opportunities for hiking and exploring the mountains in the area. It’s possible to see wild moose, reindeer, and arctic fox. In the winter, you can also see the northern lights quite often. During winter we get a lot of snow and are always using our snowmobiles. Throughout the year we visit many cabins, which is a great opportunity to get closer to nature. There’s also a small Sami museum nearby, which is very informative. Finally, on a clear day, you can look across the sea and see Russia.

    We are very remote, with only 900 inhabitants in the entire municipality. There is a village 2km away with a restaurant and a bar. Tana Bru is 15 km away, Vadsø 50 km and Kirkenes 125 km. These places have amenities like cinemas, pubs, shopping centres etc.

    The nearest airports are Kirkenes (2 hours drive) and Vadsø (30 minutes drive), although it is probably cheaper and more convenient to fly to Kirkenes.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    Two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    5 hours a day, 5 days a week. Flexible.

The northern lights, here by the sea where we live!
One of our volunteers (left), and me, Ellen (right) in the fence.
Two of our volunteers helping with earmarking the reindeer calves in September/October.
Two of our volunteers picking lingonberries in September :)
Our reindeer at the fence!
Cutting up the reindeer bodies with one of our volunteers
Me, Ellen, after shooting one of our white reindeer
Some of our volunteers helping us at the reindeer fence :)
Cutting the reindeer meat into smaller chunks for dinners
At the reindeer fence in the winter
Repairing the reindeer fence
Our son and our dogs :)

These are extra optional ratings when members leave feedback. The average rating left for each option is displayed.

Accuracy of profile: (5.0)

Cultural exchange: (5.0)

Communication: (4.5)











Host ref number: 828921139854