ROOTED International Student House Application Form
Since the summer of 2015, we, as a Protestant Reformed Church in Utrecht, have been subletting 10 rooms to students in the houses we own at the Wittevrouwensingel 31, in Utrecht. Our beautiful building is not just a regular student house. It houses an international community that is hospitable to both foreign and Dutch students. We are convinced that housing students from all kinds of countries and cultures creates an inspiring and enriching environment.
The students not only form an international community but a Christian community as well. This means that they want to live together in a way that is marked by the good news of Jesus Christ. The atmosphere the community aims at, concentrates on two core values: Grace and Truth. Or, one could also say: we relate lovingly to each other, but also dare to challenge one another.
In our house, there are a number of fixed habits that are expressions of the Christian identity. For example, prayer before dinner. Also, there is a connection with the local international Christian fellowship ‘Christian Union’ (IFES). Christian Union frequently meets in the living room of the student house.
The students in our community have knowingly chosen to commit a large portion of their spare time to the community and the other (international) students.
Community means frequent attendance.
Every Tuesday night it is House Night! Around 7 PM, all 10 students first have dinner together in the living room downstairs. So many countries means a lot of variety in what you eat! At the end of the meal we review the general aspects of living in a community. This meeting is also a chance to ask “respectful” questions about things or practices you find confusing in the house. Because in a culturally mixed house, once in a while you will also encounter differences of opinion on how things should be done. This could lead to avoiding the other. Or it can lead to growth – much preferred! This is also a time to work out ideas together with regard to House Activities or (welcoming) events for other foreign students. After dinner, it is time for some community- and/or faith building activity, organized by one of the roommates. Afterwards and during the other most other evenings of the week, it is time for the famous Dutch ‘gezelligheid’ – meaning time for a game, watching a movie or just hang out and have a good conversation.
One weekend a month, a House Activity is scheduled. As a community, together you will do something fun and/or socially useful. From a late and lazy brunch to a ‘roll up your sleeves’ activity in a volunteer project. Discover the Utrecht canals by boat, or visit one of the other big cities in the Netherlands.
Every member of the house has a task in one of the house ‘committees’. (Planned) initiatives are organizing activities in the neighborhood and amongst international students. Besides this we are helping to organize the activities of the Christian Union international student biblestudy group.
Among the ten students there is also an eldest. He/she will take initiative in organizing the House Meeting. She is also available for a conversation if you do not feel comfortable at home, for whatever reason. This eldest has guidance sessions with a member of the student committee of the Singelkerk several times a year. If needed he can also call for their help or advice in a specific situation.
If you recognize yourself in the statements below, you may fit in our community!
• You are willing to be actively involved in the community life of the student house; you are prepared to engage in open-minded and transparent relations with the other students in the student house.
• You are a Christian and you help in shaping the Christian identity of the student house.
• You are studying in Utrecht and are staying here for at least 6 months uninterrupted, in case of an international student or at least two years, in case of a Dutch student.
• You are always present at house nights, house meetings and house activities and make sure you don’t plan other obligations.
• You are not a board member of one of the local Dutch Student unions, because this can lead to overstretched commitments.
• You are willing to participate in one of the house ‘committees’, like joining/organizing Christian Union, organizing activities for other international students in town or activities with the neighbors.
It is helpful but not necessary when
you have a vision for developing the house as an international student community and are motivated to, for this end, work together with the Singelkerk Student Committee.
What’s in it for you…?
The Singelkerk Student Committee and the student pastor take care of the conditions that are necessary to create a community where each student, both Dutch and international, gets a chance to:
• relate to students from other cultures that are mutually enriching, and
• find a home during your study period in the Netherlands, where you share and celebrate your life with others and may find true meaning.
All tenants first get a 6 months’ contract. We assume that this contract will be prolonged after this ‘trial period’ until the end of your period of study in Utrecht. Unless… you are not fully participating in the student community life. So, we will evaluate your presence in the house when the trial period is ending. Next to your general attitude and fit in the community we will look at more concrete factors, like:
1. Whether you attend the Tuesday House Night.
2. Whether you are involved in the monthly House Activity on Saturdays
3. Whether you are taking responsibility and initiative in the house ‘committee’ you are in.
House and rooms
In the student house, there are five rooms available for international students. These rooms are furnished and have an all-in price, ranging from € 375 to € 475 per month. The other five rooms are rented to Dutch students. Those rooms are not furnished and the prices range from € 240 to € 375 per month.
In addition, there are a large common room and a kitchen. The house consists of two sections, that both exit in the common room. The left side of the house is the ‘male section’ with 4 bedrooms. In the right side of the house is the ‘female section’ with 6 bedrooms. Both sections have their own sanitary facilities. For facility services, there is a facility manager who works in the service of the Singelkerk.
If you want to apply for a student room in our house, we kindly ask you to fill in the application form below. In this form we also would like you to write a (short) motivation in which you describe:
• Why you would like to live in this house,
• What you would like to learn, and
• What you can contribute to the Christian international community.
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The ROOTED International Student House
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