HOW FINLAND IS SAVING THE WORLD FROM STRESS
- Rent a Finn encourages travellers to learn true happiness from the Finns
- Visitors have until 14 April 2019 to apply to visit Finland
Helsinki 18 March 2019: Visit Finland is inviting people from around the world to experience how the Finns live in true harmony with nature through their new initiative, Rent a Finn.
This summer, Finnish citizens will work as happiness guides and welcome visitors into their homes, showing them how to connect with nature and understand the Finnish art of relaxation.
The application period for guests is open until 14 April 2019.
Studies show that nature can balance our minds and alleviate stress. Even a short walk in nature lowers your blood pressure and pulse while boosting endorphin levels. In 2018 the UN ranked Finland as the happiest country in the world*, thanks to its special connection with nature.
Heli Jimenez, Senior Director, International Marketing, Business Finland said: “Many travellers choose to visit Finland because of our uniquely peaceful nature and tranquility. The Rent a Finn campaign is in response to the global travel trend of living like a local, which is all about sharing genuine experiences with ordinary people.
”Pure nature is a part of life in Finland. We go outdoors in any weather, let our babies nap outside and spend a great deal of time in nature in general. Our happiness guides all share a certain awareness, a great love of nature and an appreciation for slow living.”
The Rent a Finn initiative has initially enlisted eight ordinary Finns to work as happiness guides for travellers. The guides, who were chosen from among hundreds of applicants, will welcome visitors for a few days and show them their own ways of relieving stress in nature.
Linda Räihä, one of the happiness guides, explains, “Time runs differently on our island. It seems to slow down somehow, and there is never a need for hurry.”
“There are many ways to connect with nature from working in your vegetable patch, boating, fishing, heating up the sauna or foraging for mushrooms and berries in the forest.”
The visits will take place during summer 2019 and will be free of charge for travellers.
The Rent a Finn initiative is being assisted by Hintsa Performance, a Finnish high-performance coaching company, who believes sustainable performance is created through a balanced lifestyle. Their methods of boosting human performance have been tested in organisations around the world, and their clients range from Fortune 500 leaders to Formula One World Champions.
The Rent a Finn website includes a test based on Hintsa’s methods. It helps you to see how balanced your life really is and offers advice for reducing stress and maintaining your mental wellbeing.
Annastiina Hintsa, Chief Operating Officer from Hintsa Performance said, “Our modern life is full of stimuli, and unwinding can be a challenge. Spending time in nature helps you reset and recover. Seeing where you stand is the first step towards reducing stress and creating long-term performance”.
Hetta Huittinen, Head of International Media & PR, Business Finland, firstname.lastname@example.org, +358 40,033 9597
You can download press images here. Remember to credit the photographer and source Visit Finland.
Rent a Finn
- Rent a Finn is an experiment by Visit Finland, part of Business Finland, where ordinary Finns work as happiness guides for travellers visiting Finland during summer 2019
- The application period for travellers is 18 March – 14 April 2019
- Learn more and apply at rentafinn.com
Visit Finland works to develop Finland’s travel destination brand, marketing Finland to travellers abroad and help companies in the travel industry go global. We cooperate with travel destinations regions, businesses in the travel industry and other export promoters and embassies, Visit Finland is part of Business Finland.
Business Finland is the Finnish innovation funding, trade, investment, and travel promotion organization, headquartered in Helsinki. Business Finland is fully owned by the Finnish Government. Business Finland employs 600 experts in 40 offices globally and in 20 regional offices around Finland. Business Finland is part of the Team Finland network.
*UN World Happiness Report 2018 http://worldhappiness.report/ed/2018/
The Good Country Index 2019 http://goodcountryindex.org
Rent a Finn Happiness guides
Get to know them.
Esko, the Mayor of Rovaniemi, the hometown of Santa Claus, located next to the Arctic Circle in Lapland, spends most of his summers with his family in their summer cottage. It is probably the most traditional way for the Finns to enjoy summer days.
“I’m happiest spending time in nature with my family. Water in all its forms and fishing are also important to me.”
Hanna is an IT-marketing professional, who currently studies tourism economics. She is passionate about Finnish Nature and sharing it’s wonders to travellers. She lives in the Metropolitan Southern Finland, but has spent most of her summers sailing in the Archipelago and winters skiing in Lapland, so she is more than familiar with many wonders of Finnish nature.
“Enjoying the sound of the waves and the beautiful sunsets on some deserted island in the middle of the sea is where I find my happiness from.”
Juho was born and raised in Japan. Today Juho, his fiancé Marjukka and their dog Dobby live in Kirkkonummi, near Helsinki. Juho is an urban farmer and he works in both digital media and health tech business.
“Simple life in nature inspires me. I value experiencing nature through all the senses. Being present without making a sound or doing something physical in nature. Building a fire, breathing in the morning dew or feeling the soil under my feet.”
Katja is a social services student and a yoga teacher who lives in a very idyllic wooden neighborhood of Helsinki, called Käpylä. She wants to show her guests how to experience nature within the city limits.
”Meditative moments in nature. Lush forests, calm lakes and saunas. Magical encounters with nature and wildlife, such as deer and birds.”
Laura & Joni
Laura, Joni and their dog Watti are an active outdoor family who live in Sodankylä,Northern Lapland. They take daily walks in the forest and spend their weekends hiking and bicycling in the summer and skiing in the winter.
“We left Southern Finland to live closer to nature in Sodankylä. Our happiness stems from silence and nature’s constant presence. We enjoy the small-town atmosphere. We have our privacy without being completely isolated.”
Linda & Niko
Finnish couple Niko and Linda are living their life to the fullest in the middle of the Baltic Sea with their chihuahua Helmi. The couple used to live in the City, but went to the sea and Archipelago so often that they decided it was easier to move house. They currently live in Utö, the southernmost island of Finland.
“Time runs differently on our island. It seems to slow down somehow, and there is never a need for hurry.”
Petri is a physiotherapist and a nature-lover, who lives with his wife Sini and their dog Ruu in southwest Finland, in a small village called Mathildedal.
“A natural silence that enchants your mind. Being alone and present. Or a blissful post-sauna beer.”
Timo is from Lapland, currently living in Southern Finland, in a city of Hämeenlinna, with his wife Päivi and their dog Mosku. His work is very closely connected to nature, as he manages museums and exhibitions for the National Parks and Wildlife Service Finland.
“The sounds of nature, tranquility and gently lapping waves ground me. I want to share this feeling of happiness with the world. There are so many fantastic places in Finland that only locals can show you.”