A youth group entering its twelfth year hopes to fight racism in the next generation of Icelanders by bringing together young immigrants and nationals.
The group, called Adrenaline Against Racism, is heading to the Westman Islands this year to start this year’s programme.
The essence of the Adrenaline Against Racism, Rev. Bjarni Karlsson explains, is to mix young immigrants and young Icelanders from different schools and take them out into the countryside to spend a few days together. During this time, the group – this year comprised of 28 kids – will relax together, but also face challenges in a natural setting that require teamwork and communication.
“When everyone’s completed the task at hand and come home in one piece, friendships are created,” he said.
This year at the Westman Islands, the kids will learn first of all about the period in Icelandic history when Turks used to sail up to Iceland to kidnap the locals. This period gave rise to the law that made it legal to kill a Turk in Iceland; a law that remained on the books well into the 90s.
Although the immigrants youths taking part might struggle with Icelandic, Bjarni says, “The main language is friendship.”