A wide range of specialist counseling and support is available for international couples and families living in Finland. The situation is much more difficult in most other countries.
The following websites and information sources offer various forms of support and aid for different problem situations.
The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland supports Finns around the world. Finnish parishes offer church services and ceremonies as well as pastoral care in Finnish.
Ministry to Finns abroad (in Finnish)
Helpline (in Finnish), maintained by the church, gives you an opportunity to talk on the phone about issues that are weighing on your mind. The line’s goal is not to provide the caller with ready-made answers. Instead, your discussion partner helps you to find solutions that suit best your life situation.
The Virtaa välillämme (‘Current between Us’) activities, run by the church, offer couples’ courses and events for young adults in different parts of Finland. The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland’s Ecclesiastical Board has a website on Christian marriage and couples, you can find Parisuhteenpalikat (Building blocks of relationships), which help couples to discuss their relationship and its potential dilemmas.
The Finnish Seamen’s Mission and the Evangelical Lutheran Church cooperate in providing social, cultural and diaconal services for Finns travelling and residing overseas. Moreover, they carry out international Christian work at Finnish ports.
The Couples’ relationship center Kataja ry (in Finnish) collects information on couple relationship work carried out in Finland and follows developments in work on relationships and particularly couple relationships. The association also develops methods and ideas while organizing and developing training for instructors.
The Central Union for Child Welfare coordinates information, activities and expertise on children, children’s rights and child protection from Finland to overseas and vice versa. It represents Finnish child protection in international forums and serves as an expert organization. In addition, the union serves as a link for its member communities to European and international organizations in the field.
The Mannerheim League for Child Welfare (MLL) focuses on domestic child protection. However, the organization has also built networks in Europe and the rest of the world, with companion groups especially in Sweden and Estonia. MLL is one of the founding members of the International Forum for Child Welfare, (IFCW).
The Family Federation of Finland’s Kotipuu is an expert and resource center of family life, parenting and children’s upbringing. The federation’s website provides information on couple relationships as well as on legal matters connected to marriage and domestic partnerships.
Tukinet (in Finnish) is an online crisis center. Its staff members and volunteers provide personal counseling, provide access to various discussion groups and offer information through a service directory and material bank.
Apua eroon (in Finnish) seeks to provide support in the different stages of a divorce. The online service aims to offer a wide range of views in the subject.
The Central Union for Child Welfare offers support in matters connected to divorce in families with children.
Single-parent Families (Yhden vanhemman perheiden liitto ry) is an association that provides single parents support in parenting as well as shared joys, survival tips and information on their rights.
The Abducted Children Finland NGO is a nationwide child protection and human rights organization for the social needs of families battling with international child abductions and difficult custody disputes. The NGO is a member organization of the Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters, and it cooperates with other bodies doing multicultural family work.
Nyyti is a support center for students, aiming to promote and support their mental wellbeing and life management skills as well as to influence matters related to the subject. Nyyti’s activities and services are based on research and clients’ needs and are developed based on studies, the philosophy of the learning organization and Nyyti’s values. Services are developed to promote mental wellbeing and health and prevent illness. They can also be used by Finnish society more broadly.
Nettiturvakoti/Netti Shelter (in Finnish) is an online service run by the Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters. It is particularly focused on children’s and teens’ status in families. Through the Netti Shelter, you can apply for help by email. On the website, you will find contact information for shelters, homes and other support centers.
Nettitukinainen, the help service of the Rape Crisis Centre, offers crisis support and legal counseling in Finnish for those who have experienced sexual violence overseas. The website provides discussion support and information on what to do in various situations. The service aims to offer free professional help for victims of sexual violence and abuse, their family and friends as well as those who meet victims through work.
Therapion Consulting is a company specialized in online psychotherapy and psychology services. You can access the services through email, chat, phone or net phone call.
The Vastaamo Psychotherapy Center is an online counseling service where you can consult social and healthcare experts about issues in the field.
Contact information of private family counselors and further information material:
Relationship counseling, particularly for international couples and families:
Helka Silventoinen, tel. +358-40-961 1897
Reports for Multicultural Marriages seminars, organized in connection of the Finnish Expatriate Parliaments sessions, and other material is available on the website of the Migration Institute of Finland.
The website of the European Judicial Network is maintained by the European Commission. The site provides for instance the following information: Divorce and legal separation