Estonia offering free cultural, adaptation programs to D-visa arrivals

Recently arrived foreigners participating in an Estonian state-organized cultural program in Viinistu.
Recently arrived foreigners participating in an Estonian state-organized cultural program in Viinistu. Source: New in Estonia

Several free cultural programs aimed at foreign citizens who have arrived in Estonia on a long-stay D-visa are taking place this month and next, and the state is incorporating counseling seminars into them focused on adaptation to life in Estonia.

Estonia's D-visa is a long-stay visa, valid for a period of up to one year, that can be issued for work, study or family-related purposes.

According to Expat Relocation Estonia director Martin Lään, who also oversees the training program, these cultural programs for foreign arrivals are aimed at boosting their interest in learning about life in Estonia and thus also supporting their adaptation to their new environment, the Ministry of the Interior and Ministry of Culture said in a joint press release.

"These events have been warmly received thus far, and interest is constantly growing," Lään said.

New in Estonia program coordinator Valeria Mihhailova said that the idea to host cultural programs including counseling seminars evolved from her five years of experience being in charge of training programs at the Estonian Institute's Culture Step.

"Together we discovered that through culture, you can vividly illustrate what is happening in Estonia and motivate people to actively participate in social life," Mihhailova said. "Such events give foreigners the opportunity to practice their Estonian and find points of contact through culture that connects and inspires them."

Through the end of this year, citizens of third countries who have arrived in Estonia on a D-visa are eligible to take part in a number of free events held in both Russian and English.

Events scheduled for this month and next are slated to take place at such locations as Kumu Art Museum, the Estonian Open Air Museum at Rocca al Mare and the Estonian National Museum (ERM), and Mihhailova said that more will be added to the calendar throughout November.

Previous events have included locations such as Viinistu Art Harbor, Anija Manor, Tallinn Zoo and the Tallinn School of Music and Ballet (MUBA).

During the cultural program, participants will also learn about how to more easily adapt to life in Estonia, with topics including the basics of the Estonian state and society, labor law as well as healthcare and medicine. Organizers will also provide participants with more information about the country's educational institutions, language support as well as various state and third-sector social services.

Click here for more info and to register for the cultural programs available through the end of 2022.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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