4. toukokuuta 2019

My time in Anjala

Welcome to my post about my time at the Nuorisokeskus Anjala!

After my internship at the german organisation GFE Erlebnistage in the summer 2018 I decided to continue with further training in outdoor education with a partner organisation in Finland, Anjala.

During that one month of living and working in Anjala I learned a lot about different methods and programmes. I also had the possibility to see Helsinki, Kouvola and the area around Anjala. In this post I want to tell you about the way I experienced my work and the land.

The Youth Centre Anjala- Nuorisokeskus Anjala
One of the most beautiful things in Anjala was the property of the Youth Centre. The apartments for the groups, the main building and all the other buildings are located in a very historical and beautiful landscape.

Years ago, the river which is next to the Youth Centre was the border between Finland and Russia. The property used to own the Wrede family. The old Manor and the storage make it easy to put you down the memory lane and back to the time when the Wrede family was living here. But I didn’t come to Anjala to admire the buildings, i wanted to find out how they are working with outdoor education. I already knew that the Youth Centre is working with camp schools, day programmes and trainings. But what programmes do they have? 

What is similar to the experiences I already have? And what kind of knowledge will I bring back to Germany?
During my stay I had the opportunity to accompany many programmes and I want to present my favourite ones here:

Nature Trail
The Nature Trail is a trail located next to the river with questions about environment and nature on the way. What makes the trail so special for me is the beautiful landscape you can see during the walk. It is a great possibility for participants to relax.

Escape History
This program is happening at the old manor and challenges the participants with many different riddles. It is all about finding out how the citizens can survive the war with the Russians on the other side of the river. I really like this program because it has a nice mixture of challenging the participants and informing them about the past of this land. Divided in groups they must find keys, puzzle pieces together and decode texts. At the end they must put all their results together to open the final box where they can find the solution how to survive the war…

Anjala Tarzan
Teamwork and Action: In this program you really learn to jump over your own shadow. While you are hanging in a giant swing a group is pulling you to the top of the tree. From there you can start swinging in a height of 12 meter! I did it myself and the feeling was great!

Campfire cooking
When I used to cook over a campfire with groups it was almost every time the same: pizza or soup. But now I learned a very exciting dish which is quite easy to do and but the output is amazing: Smoked fish with rice. With a small fire, a smoking box and some Trangias for the rice the dish was done in about one hour
Escape Forest
During my work I spend a lot time on preparing this new Escape- Forest program. After plenty days of preparation, we tested it with the first group, and it was really nice.
This program is quite similar to the Escape History program: It is also about solving riddles, puzzle pieces together and finding the right numbers and letters for the combination locks.
The story: A scientist went to the forest to explore the shining stones. When he got lost in the forest, he hid some hints which are telling you the story about what he found out and how he got out of the forest…


Apart from those programmes I had the possibility to accompany many other programmes: Tree climbing, GPS tracking, teamwork games, archery, fishing, labyrinth and others. I really enjoyed the difference between the programmes I already knew from erlebnistage and the new programmes I could try. That shows me again how versatile outdoor education can be.

Finland – Landscapes and more
I already mentioned that I had the opportunity to visit Helsinki, Kouvola and the area around Anjala.
With this pictures I want to show you some impressions I got:

Around the small town Anjala I found many peaceful beautiful places. 

Repovesi National Park
Hiking trip

Helsinki and Nuuksio


At the end I want to say thank you to everyone who supported me before during  and after my stay at Finland. Thank you for showing me around, to instruct me for the programmes, to translate all the conversations I couldn’t understand and for welcoming me to the daily routine of the Youth Centre!