KVT trains at least one Finnish and English speaking camp leader for each voluntary workcamp organized in Finland, though ideally there would be always two camp leaders. The application period for camp leaders is in the spring from March to May. Sometimes camp leaders are still sought in early summer due to cancellations.
There are no special requirements to become a camp leader, but initiative and open-mindedness are enough! The only absolute condition is the English language skill, as it is the common language for the volunteers. It is a plus if the camp leaders know Finnish language and on some camps we might require that at least one of the two would speak both Finnish and English. A camp leader is not a work supervisor, but their job is to take care of the team spirit and that everyone knows what is happening. It is an advantage if the volunteer applying for camp leader positions has already participated in a voluntary workcamp or has experience in other types of group activities. We also require KVT membership from camp leaders.
It would be good for the camp leaders to be available before the camp so that they can communicate with each other and the camp host and go through the upcoming program. In addition, other volunteers coming to the camp may have questions for the camp leaders before the camp. The camp leaders don’t get paid, but trips to the camp leader training and to the camp are reimbursed and food and accommodation is provided at the camp. Camp leaders receive a certificate of their work after the camp. Students should also ask their own educational institution if they can earn credits for working as a camp leader. The camp leader will build up their work experience, develop language skills and gain unique experience in leading international groups – so give it a try if you are interested!
Our wishes for the camp leader:
- previous experience from either a voluntary workcamp or other group activities
- good English language skills
- participate in the training provided by KVT
The duties of the camp leader are:
- act as a link between the KVT office, the camp host and the volunteers
- create a sense of community in the camp participants
- participate in writing an info letter to volunteers before the camp
- participate in camp work as one of the volunteers
- assist as necessary in practical arrangements at the camp
- write a report of the camp to KVT
Every year KVT organizes training for the camp leaders before the start of the camp season, usually one training in May and a second training in June. The training deals with e.g. the role and tasks of the camp leader, group dynamics, insurance, intercultural encounters and various problem situations. In addition, the training provides information on the history, ideology and activities of KVT and our international umbrella organization SCI.
In 2021, there will be two trainings for camp leaders: the first training will be on 15-16 May and the second training on 12-13 June.
At the end of the camp season, there will also be Volunteer Weekend in the autumn, where camp leaders are invited to come to share their experiences, get to know other KVT volunteers and evaluate the success of the camps.
If you are interested in being a camp leader
Tell us 1) who you are and your contact information, 2) which camp you want to be a camp leader in (2 or 3 options are good to have), 3) why you want to be a camp leader and 4) which training weekend is suitable for you. Also tell us if you have previous experience of voluntary workcamps, other similar group activities, or if you have some other useful skills or experience.
You can read more about next summer’s camps on the Finnish camps’ website.