Municipalities receive special subsidies to develop and implement guidance and counselling services for immigrants
The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment has granted municipalities EUR 3 million to develop guidance and counselling services for immigrants. The subsidies were awarded to 21 projects implemented by municipalities, which aim to improve the integration and employment of immigrants.
In the spring, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment organised a call for applications for municipalities to develop guidance and counselling services for immigrants and to implement the services launched in recent years. Subsidies were awarded to 21 projects that aim to improve the integration and employment of immigrants by developing guidance and counselling services and the related multi-sectoral cooperation.
Approximately EUR 3 million were granted to projects between 1 September 2022 and 31 August 2023. Most of the funded projects develop guidance and counselling services regionally or in cooperation with several municipalities. The projects take place in the largest cities and regional centres where a significant number of foreign-language speakers reside.
The subsidies are also used to support the development of a national network of guidance and counselling services and to implement the services. Thanks to the multi-channel and network-like operating models and cooperation, guidance and counselling can also be offered in the neighbouring municipalities of the project cities.
Projects improve accessibility of guidance and counselling services
The projects implemented by municipalities will develop the availability and accessibility of guidance and counselling, communications, competence of counsellors and cooperation models, and integrate guidance and counselling into the service structures. The call for applications also emphasised the implementation of development work, which has been supported by discretionary government grants in the previous years
The development work will draw on the conclusions and recommendations of the report produced by Owal Group Oy for the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment in 2020.
Common features determined for guidance and counselling services
The funded projects are based on regional and local development needs. A service design project has aimed to define the national features of guidance and counselling services by identifying the local strengths and operating methods in low-threshold services. Identifying the common features aims to support the development of guidance and counselling and the establishment of services in municipalities.
The service design project is implemented in cooperation with the KEHA Centre’s support team for multidisciplinary services and the consulting company Gofore.
Hanna-Maria Hyttinen, Senior Specialist, tel. +358 29 504 7203