Survey Results 4: International Contact
International contact growing up
Growing up, 11 respondents had frequented an International School. 9 respondents frequented Danes Worldwide Summerschool, in which Danish children living in countries all over the world were collected in Denmark and taught Danish language and culture. Finally, a couple mentioned frequenting the Danish churches, Scandinavian communities and international clubs.
International contact today
Today, two respondents answer that keeping contact with the international environment is not very important. The reasons for this is explained by a very strong connection to the Danish society, and expressing a wish for living the mono-cultural life - the idea of engaging in international societies seems unappealing in comparison to complete immersion into a culture.
Eight respond that international contact is quite important while five responded that contact to the international environment is very important. One was undecided, and no one felt that it wasn't important at all. Those who found it" quite important" or "very important", frequently explained that it was a part of their identities. A couple mentioned the importance of keeping up-to-date with international affairs, to keep learning and keeping an open mind. Finally, some answered that they kept in touch with the international environment "for the fun of it".
All of the individuals who found it to be very important to maintain contact with the international environment also wish they had more international contact today.
Fulfilling the need for international contact
To fulfill the need for international contact, 5 individuals specifically mentioned web-related activities: emailing, surfing and chatting. Other activities mentioned were "travelling", working for NGOs promoting intercultural exchange such as IAESTE, volunteering as a "buddy" - entailing helping out exchange students. In general, interaction both with friends abroad and strangers is important in order to maintain contact with the international environment.
The maintenance of international contact is, obviously, dependent on whether one finds it important. There does, however, seem to be a trend that individuals eventually settle down in a community and feel satiated with regards to international contact. The ages for this change, but I suspect that the way they envision their future may have something to do with it.