Internationals won’t be alone on Christmas
‘No one should be alone for Christmas’, says David Kraandijk, president of the Erasmus Student Network Groningen (ESN). So ESN came up with a special Christmas campaign.
Many internationals are stuck here because of the pandemic. At ESN, they can sign up to get together over the holidays. Originally, they were supposed to have dinner in groups of four, matched on the basis of things like hobbies and diet preferences.
‘Because of the new measures, we’re reducing the groups to three people. It’s a shame, since it means fewer social contacts, but rules are rules’, says David. ESN is also creating a Facebook group where internationals can invite each other to go on a walk or a run.
The Faculty of Behavioural and Social Sciences came up with a similar campaign. Internationals students and staff could sign up to have dinner together or take a walk around Groningen in pairs. ‘The set-up for our dinner parties already consisted of one host and two guests, so we won’t have to change anything’, says Mirjam Buigel-De Witte with the faculty board. ‘But we’ll let them decide if they would rather go for a walk than have dinner.’
People can sign up for the ESN Christmas campaign on their website. Registration is open until December 21. Dutch students can also sign up. ‘If they can’t go home because their parents are infected, for instance, they’re more than welcome’, says David.