Governance and Society

New arrivals in the Faroes: “The biggest challenge is the language and not being part of a Faroese family”

According to Irish Times, the Faroe Islands aim to avoid Europe’s mistakes on immigration.

The Irish newspaper emphasizes that the Faroese government has been quick to introduce integration measures to ensure that new arrivals can settle into a society that, for much of its history, has been a highly homogenous nation.

However, not all is well in the state of Denmark – and new arrivals might still find it rather difficult to integrate into the Faroese society.

Rainer Latupeirissa, a construction worker from Indonesia who has been living in the Faroe Islands for 10 years having married a Faroese woman, states that his biggest challenge has been the language.

Mr. Latupeirissa points out that the Faroese government ought to put greater emphasis on improving its language program course.

“The biggest challenge has been the language. It is not even close to my mother tongue,” he says. “My hope for the future is that the government’s language course can be improved, even to the extent that people are able to get a Faroese language diploma of some level; perhaps to be able to use that to study further in the Faroes.”

Kinga Eysturland, a Polish immigrant who has been living in the Faroe Islands for the past seven years, points out that her biggest challenge is not being part of a Faroese family.

“My husband is originally Russian, which means that neither of us has any relatives in the Faroes,” she says. “Having a Faroese spouse and being a part of a Faroese clan is crucial to be able to integrate successfully. The Faroese society is still very tribal, nepotism is common and without having any Faroese connections, things like getting a job or making local friends are difficult.”

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