This summer's Malev youth work program is gathering momentum, with the project's Tallinn branch ceremoniously opening the season on Tuesday.
Over 800 students aged between 13 and 18 gathered in Tallinn's Town Hall Square on Tuesday to mark the beginning of the program for the capital's branch.
Thousands more from across the nation are also set to take part. The children will be divided into groups, some situated in cities and others in rural camps.
The head of the Tallinn branch, Maarja Saavik, told ETV that the work will include restoring manor houses, picking strawberries and caring for sea-buckthorn plants.
Outside working hours, participants can make short films, with prizes for the best clips to be awarded when the program ends in mid-August.
“Malev is a great opportunity [for the children] to gain their first work experience in a safe environment, and that can be an asset in the future when they enter the job market,” said Liis Proos, an expert with the Youth Work Center.
Participants will receive training, including introductions to labor laws and writing CVs, before heading out to the camps and work places, where they will earn around 1.9 euros per hour.
The volunteer seasonal work program for high school children was created in the 60s and was over 20,000 strong in its heyday. It was shut down when the Soviet Union collapsed, but was resurrected a decade ago.