Question by Burton Incarnate: How hard is it to get a work visa in Scandinavia for an American?
I really want to move to Scandinavia, specifically Norway, Sweden or Denmark. what kind of jobs are widely needed there and how hard is it to get a work visa?
Answer by kaisatsu
Each country has different industries and different kinds of job vacancies. Sweden and Denmark are both EU members, which to some extent factors into their immigration policies. Norway is not, and getting a work visa for Norway is virtually impossible unless you have a job offer (or immediate relatives in Norway).
While I don’t have a lot of knowledge about the job markets in Sweden and Denmark, Norway is quite desperate for oil/gas professionals, and if you have a background in this area it can be surprisingly easy to get a job with one of the major oil companies that have offices here. Another popular option is in IT and software, and some companies like Opera hire many employees from overseas.
Aside from specialized in-demand fields, you will find that a working knowledge of the language is one of the key assets when looking for employment in Scandanavia. It can be quite difficult (though not impossible) to track down a job otherwise. Also, a lot of foreigners, particularly Americans, have difficulties adjusting to the Janteloven mindset in much of Scandinavia, where it’s less encouraged to play up your personal strengths, making job interviews a bit more tricky!
You can find more information including a few job listings in English on the Norwegian Labor Administration website:
For all of the countries, you can get lots of additional information and job listings from an internet search. In addition to the English searches (“work in Norway,” “work in Denmark,” etc) I would suggest searching in the local languages as well (“arbeide i Norge,” “arbejde i Danmark,” “arbete i Sverige”). Many of the resulting websites have English versions, and Google translate ( http://translate.google.com )supports all three of the Scandinavian languages.
Know better? Leave your own answer in the comments!
Educating Our Children for the Future
Image by 350.org
* Help break the cycle of poverty and environmental degradation by
educating the indegious Mayan children of Comalapa, Guatemala.
I am writing you just a few weeks after the completion of the construction
of a sustainable home for an indigenous Mayan family in Comalapa,
Guatemala. A total of 96 people, including members of the Earthship
Biotecture Crew, Long Way Home
local Guatemalans, and 65 volunteers from countries including Austraila,
New Zealand, Brazil, Italy, France, Germany, Denmark, England, The
Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, South Africa, Mexico, Canada, and the United
States, worked together in unison to build a ‘Simple Survival Pod’
Earthship for Long Way Home’s Guatemalan Foreman, Romeo Apen and his
family. In three weeks time, the home was complete and ready for its
finishing touches so that Apens could move into their new home. Not only
will Romeo’s home collect and filter its own rainwater and run on solar
energy, it will also use and reuse water a total of four times, which is
used to grow food in an indoor greenhouse.
The experience can only be described with words such as "amazing",
"incredible", "magical", and "heart-warming," and the project clearly
demonstrated the power that is possible when people come together for a
All of this began by a small group of individuals working together
Biotecture andLong Way Home to
help raise donations for a worthy and charitable cause: Bottle Buildings
and Bamboo Bicycles in
Through this campaign with indiegogo
a total of ,200USD was raised in one month to help secure the necessary
funds to complete the construction of the home for Romeo and his family.
The support and interest we received for this campaign from family,
friends, and many other interested parties, was nothing short of
*Today, the cause continues with The Long Way Home and the children of
[image: Los Ninos]
After spending three weeks in Comalapa, I began to realize how the work
Long Way Home does is vitally important to Compala, Guatemala. Long Way
Home Team are addressing very real issues that not only affect Guatemala
and other Latin America countries, but countries around the world, there is
an over-abundance of waste and trash that goes completely unchecked. This
later ends up in our streets, gardens, playgrounds or, even worse, our
lakes, streams, and groundwater where many people in countries like
Guatemala get their drinking water.
The problem is compounded in places like Guatemala where there is almost no
infrastructure for recycling or even basic waste disposal. Most of the
garbage goes directly into the street or, as previously mentioned, into a
lake or stream.
So what do we do about what seems to be an ever-increasing problem with no
Although there are no perfect solutions at the moment, Long Way Home Team
are making serious head way on some of the problems that not only affect
Guatemalans, but affect us all.
Thus far, Long Way Home has collected and used 262 tons of garbage for
building projects in Comalapa, Guatemala. Their primary project is a
sustainable school which, in addition to the standard curriculum, currently
teaches 46 indigenous children Kaqchikel (the traditional local Mayan
dialect), traditional Mayan culture, English and environmental stewardship.
The school will teach 350 students when the school is complete.
Additionally, they have paid upwards of 0,000USD in salary to local
Guatemalan workers employed for sustainable projects in Comalapa. These
community members are being trained to build sustainable homes and they can
use these skills to start their own alternative building business.
Because of my great admiration for what the Long Way Home is doing, I have
decided to stay in Comalapa and do what I can to help.
*Now…I need your help! :)*
*Who is The Long Way Home?*
Long Way Home was founded in 2004 when Mateo Paneitz finished his Peace
Corps service and realized his work in the small town of San Juan Comalapa,
Guatemala was not done. He brought together a group of dedicated activists
who were interested in helping this community change their future. Mateo’s
goal was to address two primary issues: the lack of appropriate waste
management strategies; and the lack of educational and employment
opportunities for local, indegious youth. His team came up with a unique
solution that would tackle both issues simultaneously: build a primary and
vocational facility out of waste materials!
The Técnico Maya school needs funding, and the dedicated staff and faculty
at the school have donated time and money to provide a multicultural
education at a low cost to students, only charging a nominal fee and
providing scholarships for those who cannot afford to pay. All students are
required to bring plastic bottles filled with trash each week as part of
The Impact*[image: Romeo]Sustainability*
The Vocational School will provide a venue for young Comalapans to learn
such trades as masonry, carpentry and bicycle repair. The workshops in the
school will serve as hands-on classrooms, and will be viable businesses
where the students will work as apprentices to professionals in each field.
The income generated by the workshops will pay the teachers’ salaries,
helping the school near its goal of financial sustainability. The school
plans include an area where students can learn alternative energy
production. Once the school is successfully producing alternative fuels,
the sale of fuel will provide additional funding for the institution.
Interns and volunteers from around the world who come to work at the
Técnico Maya Vocational School will also contribute to the financial
sustainability of the project. The fee that each volunteer pays will
directly fund educational programs at the school and supplement teacher
[image: bottles]Environmental Contribution
Using environmentally friendly construction methods such as trash bottles,
rammed earth, and earth bag, the school is a practical demonstration of how
to reuse discarded materials. The locals who participate in the school’s
construction have hands-on experience with these money-saving construction
techniques and will hopefully apply their new knowledge within the
Environmental education will be a main focus of the school’s new
curriculum. From organic permaculture to environmentally friendly
construction methods, young Comalapans will be learning responsible
stewardship of the Earth through their coursework. The addition of
alternative fuel production education should make a long-term impact on the
surrounding communities as well.
*[image: Economic]Economic Contribution*
The most immediate way that the construction of the vocational school will
contribute to the economy of Comalapa is through providing jobs for
teachers. Not only will the current Técnico Maya teachers have a more
consistent source of income, but the newly added vocational curriculum will
require the addition of several new teachers from within the community. The
long-term economic effects of the vocational school will be felt when a
group of skilled young Comalapans, uniquely trained to be environmental
entrepreneurs, enter the Guatemalan job market.
What I and The Long Way Home Need
*For this campaign, all that I am asking for is ,000USD. *A breakdown of
funds is below:
– 0USD goes towards my monthly volunteer and housing fee, which goes
directly to Long Home to help pay for their operational costs.
– The 0USD will be used for personal food and other everyday
– I am also raising an additional 0USD for Long Way Home, which
brings a total of 0USD going towards helping pay for teachers’ salaries,
school materials for the children, and the sustainable school building
Where can I donate and support this campaign?
What happens if we don’t reach our goal? Then what?
If we don’t reach our goal, I will not be able to stay with The Long Way
Home, and The Long Way Home will not get the helpful funds they need to
continue their mission of educating and employing the youth, promoting
community and cooperation through environmental stewardship, and
eradicating poverty and pollution in Comalapa, Guatemala.
Other Ways You Can Help…
If you can’t donate money, no problem!
You can help tremendously by spreading the word about our fundraiser with
your friends and family and in your social networks! Every little bit
helps! Share through Facebook, Twitter and e-mail! Thanks for your time,
support and donations! Together, we can make a difference!
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can
change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret
Additional links for your information:
Video on Long Way Home: youtu.be/WGt3sY54vyg
Long Way Home website: lwhome.org/
Question by KC: Does anyone know how the Norwegian social security system work?
I am a foreigner working in Norway on a 1-year contract. I am registered to the social security system and know that upon reaching 67 years of age, the Norwegian government will start paying me pensions.
Does anyone know the formula for calculating how much pensions I stand to receive?
Answer by MissDementia
Actually, since the reform a couple/few years back it is dependent on how many years you worked, just like any private pension you may receive from your employer. I’ve been in the US for quite a while now so I haven’t even bothered to look at the scale/percentages, but since they top out at 30 years employment I would imagine you’d start out very small and it would grow to a larger allowance with each year’s work. That’s generally true of most systems now, with only the disabled being given the larger allowances to begin with.
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