Take control and change your surroundings
If things are not working, you can do something about it. You can change your surroundings without changing to new surroundings.
There are plenty of different organisations, residents’ houses and residents’ committees in which you can take part in the development of your surroundings. Being part of the activity in your neighbourhood also strengthens the feeling of belonging. Take control of your surroundings and change it to your liking!
Grass-roots democracy is essentially teamwork and actively influencing your own immediate surroundings. You can influence your own study programme by joining the activity of your subject society. If you want to take a stand on issues affecting the whole University, you can do that through the Student Union. In the interest societies you can boost your activity in the things closest to your heart. The city of Oulu runs residents’ houses in several neighbourhoods. They are a good way to get to know your immediate surroundings. Student Housing Foundation of Northern Finland (PSOAS) runs residents’ committees, which operate to improve neighbourhoods with student housing.
You can carry out big projects or you can improve the comfort of yourself and your neighbours step by step. You could draw inspiration from the Kallio-liike in Helsinki, which is a neighbourhood community aiming to build solidarity among its citizens. You could also brighten your fellow residents’ day with a flash mob or some other cheerful event with likeminded people.