Online meetings almost every day, hundreds of emails sent and memes shared about COVID-19: this was part of the reality of those who had the opportunity to be telecommuting in a particularly stressful year. But Estonia wants to make 2021 totally different and launches a contest aimed at Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) specialists who work remotely, with accommodation offers for the next six months, while taking the opportunity to discover the beauty of the Nordic country and recover from 2020 The deadline for applications ends this Thursday, December 31, with the winners to be announced on January 5.

With the name Skip 2020, the goal of the Work in Estonia foundation initiative is clear: “jump” this year, as if it were a nightmare, and restore Estonia’s mental health. And how can you do it? You must submit your story on the official website of the initiative, giving an account of what motivates you to “hang up” in 2020, making it necessary to disclose other information such as mobile phone number, email and country of address. In addition, you still have to choose the three preferred regions where you would like to stay.

Nasva and Soela are two of the five regions where you can stay, with the duration of accommodation being different in each region. The first available period runs from March 1 to May 31. It should be noted that only accommodation is offered, and travel and meals are not included.

See the gallery with some pictures of Estonia

In the end it is up to a jury to choose the winners. Either way, anyone can vote for their favorite stories available on the campaign website.

What does Estonia have to offer?

Located in Northern Europe, Estonia is one of three Baltic countries, along with Latvia and Lithuania, and is separated from Scandinavia only by the Gulf of Finland.

Estonians are known for their close relationship with nature and the term “friluftsliv” is proof of that. The concept reflects a passion for the outdoors and encourages, for example, hiking outdoors, which can help promote mental health for anyone. Perhaps also for this reason, the inhabitants of Estonia are known for their happiness.

What about temperatures? Get ready for a temperate climate. Summers are mild and humid, and winters are cold, with guaranteed snow. In the summer months, the average temperature is around 20ºC, while in winter the temperature is around -5ºC. Note that, while in the summer, the days are long, especially during the solstice, several days in the winter months have less than six hours of sunlight. Spring is generally a dry and mild season, although it can still snow in April and May, but autumn is a wet and windy season.

In fact, nature is not lacking in the country, which has far fewer inhabitants than Portugal: just over one million. 51% of Estonia’s territory is forest and 23% of the country is made up of wildlife reservoirs.

According to the campaign, you also have agile government services and reliable internet coverage for remote work, even in the most rural corners. It should be noted, for example, that Estonia was the first European country with online voting, and was also the “home” of many startups, with unicorns dominating.

For those looking to better balance work and personal life, Estonians are also known for making it one of their mottos. In the country, there is a clear idea that life outside work is to be enjoyed, with no “competitions” about those who work more hours. The objective is, yes, for quality work. English is, in this country, the “official” working language.

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