Monday, 16 October 2017

Family Tree DNA - The Forefathers of Estonians

The fascinating field of genetic research had led to the discovery that all ethnic Estonians can now trace their ancestry back to one of five men. These men came to settle in Estonia during different periods in time and their descendants are all among us today. If you wish to unlock the secret of your DNA then participating in the Family Tree DNA  - 'The Estonia Project' may be the thing for you!

The Estonia project is a dual Y-DNA (paternal) / mtDNA (maternal) project, which is mainly created for ethnic Estonians, descended from paternal and/or maternal line from families that have their earliest-known origins in what is now Estonia. Over past centuries, territory of Estonia or parts of it belonged politically at various times to: German crusaders' and their descendants' states, Kingdom of Denmark, various Christian bishops, Kingdom of Poland, Kingdom of Sweden and Russian Empire. Populations moved to and from the neighbouring states of Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Poland, Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Finland. DNA of families of Estonian origin could exhibit Finno-Ugric, Baltic, Western European, Eastern European or other characteristics. This group will allow those who have a family ethnic and geographic origin in Estonia to compare their DNA with that of their geographic neighbours and, possibly, find family matches.

The below video is about the male lineages of Estonians and is aimed at Estonians living abroad to participate in the genetic research.



I took the DNA test and it revealed some interesting results. When I told my sister she was quite disappointed to discover that we are only 3% British. As our mother's family are originally from England we naturally assumed the result would be closer to 50%. We were mistaken. It appears we may be descended from Norwegian vikings on my mother's side, which, I think is quite a good thing. I've always considered myself to have the heart of a warrior - I don't like to give up on things I believe in and I am very protective towards those I love. Makes sense to me! Unfortunately I have yet to discover which of the original five men I am descended from. This can only be determined from the Y chromosome in the male line so looks like I need to get my father tested! The test costs $99 US.

Once you take the DNA test you can see all the genetic matches and contact those people if you wish. I discovered that my closest relative in an man called Per in Sweden. We have since corresponded.  


To find out more and to participate in the Estonia Project, please click here:
DNA test - genetic ancestry of Estonians

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Travel back in time onboard Tallinn's retro blue trams

As part of the Republic of Estonia's 100th birthday celebrations, six retro trams will soon be in service in Tallinn.  All the trams will bear the name of important Estonians of the first Republic of Estonia. This beautiful blue tram is dedicated to Estonia's first President, Mr Konstantin Päts.


The trams will operate on tramline 3. 
They will take you to the green area of Kadriorg.

Interior


President Päts served five times as Estonia's head of state.
More information about Mr.Päts can be found here: Konstantin Päts

Saturday, 7 October 2017

A. Le Coq Beer Museum in Tartu gives the most comprehensive overview of Estonian beer history and its culture


Tartu was the birthplace of the Estonian beer industry and it has been a beer city for almost a thousand years. The Beer Museum opened on 1st July 2003 in order to preserve the history of industrial beer brewing. It is located in the malt tower on the original A. Le Coq site built in 1898. The museum features the story of beer brewing around the world from the beer culture of ancient Egypt to the present day. On display are more than 2000 items including equipment used for making beer at home as well as old industrial brewing equipment. Also featured among the museum’s collection are many bottle caps, bottles, mugs and barrels used throughout the ages.

Entry to the Beer Museum is 10€ for adults and guided tours are available in Estonian, English and Russian.  To learn more about the production of beer, you can view the historic timeline here.

A. Le Coq is the oldest and biggest drinks manufacturer in Estonia. For more information about the A.Le Coq Beer Museum, please refer to their official website: Beer Museum

Friday, 6 October 2017

Estonia leads the way in e-governance

Today 32 European countries agreed upon common goals for e-government development over the next five years. The European ministers responsible for e-government unanimously approved and signed a joint declaration in Tallinn, now known as the Tallinn Declaration. 

The overall vision is to strive to be open, efficient and inclusive, providing borderless, interoperable, personalised, user-friendly, end-to-end digital public services to all citizens and businesses – at all levels of public administration.


To read more about the Tallinn Declaration, please click here: Tallinn Declaration on eGovernment

Aljazeera: Estonia's experiment with digital IDs




Estonia has been called the most advanced digital society in the world. It has led the way with ID cards, online voting and electronic government services, but with all this comes greater exposure to cyber attacks. This Aljazeera report explores Estonia's digital society.

Sunday, 1 October 2017

The Estonian Society of Sydney to Celebrate its 90th Birthday!


If you are going to be in Sydney this week then get ready to party for the Estonian Society of Sydney is set to celebrate its 90th anniversary! There is no doubt that that is will be a highlight of festivities at Estonian House this year!

Save the date! Saturday 7th October 2017 from  5:30 pm.
Dinner  will include a sumptuous three course meal - classic Estonian-style canapés, dinner buffet and a celebratory birthday cake. 

Entertainment will come directly from Estonia including Meelis Punder and Antti Kammiste.

The theme for the night is ‘Black and White’ but anyone who chooses to wear blue will certainly be most welcome!

Tickets 

General admission: $65
Members of the Estonian Society of Sydney Inc: $55
Children 12-17 years: $55
Children 11 years and under: Free

Venue: Eesti Maja, 141 Campbell Street, Surry Hills, NSW 2011

Contact Details: info@sydneyeestiselts.com.au Tel: / 0408 698 986 Tiina Alvre 



Monday, 25 September 2017

How to fill out an Estonian passport application form

It is passport renewal time for me once again yet it doesn't seem that long ago that I was in the Estonian Embassy in Berlin submitting my paperwork. Time certaintly flies by when you're busy! If you are a second or third generation Estonian like me who is not fluent in the Estonian language and sometimes needs assistance understanding certain words on forms, then this may help. Below I have provided a translation of everything you need to write on an Estonian passport renewal form. Use it as a guide to complete the form then attach a photo and sign within the signature box. For first time applicants, you will also need to provide additional information.

It is only possible to apply for a new passport via mail if less than 5 years have passed since applying for the previous passport and taking of fingerprints. It is always possible to apply for a new ID-card via mail. 

The form must be written in Estonian using block letters and black ink.


Estonian passport application form explained - 

On the left corner attach your passport photo, the right corner is the signature box. 


Isikutunnistus  - ID card
Eesti kodaniku pass - passport 
kehtivusaja lõppemine - expired

Taotleja isikuandmed - applicants details

Eesti isikukood - Estonian ID number
Eesnimed - first names
Perekonnanimi - last name
Sünnikoht - birth country
Sünniaeg - birthday (DD/MM/YYYY)
Sugu - gender - mees (male) naine (female))
Kodakondusus - citizenship

Taotleja kontaktandmed - applicants contact details

Tänav, maja, korter, linn või küla, vald - street, house, unit, city or town, county
postiindeks - postal code, maakond - state, Riik - country,  telefon - phone number,  e-post - e-mail address

Taotleja vanemad  - Only to be filled in by first time applicants

Dokumendi väljastamine - document issuing
Isikutunnistus (ID card) – location where you would like to pick up your ID card
Pass (passport) – locarion where you would like to pick up your passport

Taotleja seadusjärgne esindaja - only applicable when applicant is younger than 15 years old

Kõik taotlusesse esitatud andmed ja taotlusele lisatud dokumendid on õiged. Olen, teadlik, et valeandmete ja võltsitud dokumendite esitamine on karistatav (basically means that you state that all information in this form is correct). Päev/kuu/aasta (DD/MM/YYYY) taotleja või taotleja seadusjärgse esindaja allkiri (your signature)

Täidab ametnik (this you will leave empty, it’s for the official person)

Sample form

More information about Estonian passports can be found here: Politsei.ja Piirvalveamet