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Child protection

Each child has the right to particular protection. Each child is entitled to a safe and stimulating environment of growth so as to be able to develop in balanced and various ways. If a child’s living conditions at home are not sufficiently safe and the parents neglect child’s care, or if a child or an adolescent personally endangers his/her own wellbeing, the municipal child welfare authorities have the duty to help the child.

Anyone can take contact

Anyone who notices that a child or a teenager is in need for help can take contact with the Social stand-by service or the Social welfare office for families with children. A child or a teenager himself/herself, the parents, relatives or neighbours can ask for help. The reason for worry may be for instance the use of intoxicants, mental health problems or the neglect of child’s care. A child welfare report can also be made anonymously.

A request for inquiry into the child’s situation is made with a child welfare report. A child welfare report itself does not make anyone client of child protection services.

By phone

  • On weekdays 9 - 15: tel 040 568 5520
  • At other times: tel. 0500 625 990

A child welfare report is a request for a child welfare inquiry, on the basis of which the child’s need for urgent child protection has to be evaluated immediately, and a decision has to be given in 1 to 7 days on starting the inquiry into the need for child protection.

Assessment of need for support

Once a child welfare report comes to the knowledge of the social welfare office, a social worker has the duty to find out whether the child or the family in question needs support provided by the child protection services. The need for immediate support is clarified immediately: the social worker has to decide in a period of seven work days whether a circumstantial assessment of need for support should be carried out concerning the child’s situation.

As a client of child protection

If it comes up during the assessment of need for support, that the child’s situation meets the criteria of child protection, it is possible to get support from the social worker of child protection, intensified family work unit or other open care services.

When a child becomes a client of child protection, a social worker is appointed to be in charge of the child’s case and a client plan is prepared for the child. The need for support, services and the things subject to be influenced as well as the estimated period of time required to reach the targets are recorded in the plan. A client plan is made and checked in cooperation with the child and the child’s guardian and, if necessary, with another person taking care of or representing the child.

Open care services

Child protection is mainly organized by means of the support measures provided by the open care unit. Open care support measures include, among others, children’s day care, social work of child protection, intensified family work, support persons and families, rehabilitating and therapy services, placement of a whole family in family or institutional care, holiday and recreational activities, assistance provided to child’s free time activities and family’s financial situation, peer group activities, and child’s placement in foster care as a support measure taken by the open care unit.

A child or a teenager in foster care

The support measures provided by the open care unit are not always sufficient, and sometimes the problems of the family and the child’s situation are so serious that the child’s own interest requires taking into custody. A child who has been taken into custody is placed in foster care: the child moves to live away from home, generally in a foster care family or in a child welfare institution.

A child has to be taken into custody when the child’s health and development are at risk to be seriously endangered and the measures provided by the open care unit have been considered insufficient or impossible to be applied. Another ground is that foster care is in the child’s best interest.

Should a child be in immediate danger or otherwise in need for urgent placement and foster care the child is urgently placed away from home. An urgent placement can last 30 days and be extended by a decision with another 30 days, and thus it can last a total of 60 days as of the beginning of the placement.

Child protection guidance team Luotsi working in the area of foster care looks for the service or for the care place needed by the child or the teenager together with the family and the social worker.

Child protection guidance team Luotsi
Tel. 040 670 1221, office
Tel. 040 800 4200, recruiting new families

Family support centres
There are four family support centres in Tampere: Päiväperho and the family support centres of Kissanmaa, Kuusikko and Leinola. Services provided by the family support centres include open care support measures provided by child protection, family rehabilitation and children’s care in a ward.

Family care
Family care means the organization of child’s treatment, education and care away from own home in a private home. In foster families children get safe family-like treatment and have close permanent human relations.

Family homes and child welfare institutions

It is not always possible to place a child in family care or in a family support centre in Tampere near the child’s family, and therefore, a foster care place is searched in a family home, municipal establishment or public school home.

When a child has been taken into custody and placed in foster care, the handling of the child’s issues is transferred from the Social welfare office for families with children to the Social welfare office for foster care and aftercare.

Social welfare office for foster care and aftercare
Tel. 050 523 7286, office
33520 Tampere


The measure of custody is not taken for a precise period of time, it is valid “for the time being", in other words, as long as the child needs it. Custody ends at the latest when the child reaches the age of 18. It can be ended even earlier if there are not any more grounds for it.

After the end of custody, the child or the teenager is supported by aftercare. The child welfare authorities have to support the child and the teenager after the end of custody until the young adult becomes 25 years old.

Leading workers

Services of foster care and aftercare of child protection:
Service Chief Minna Kuusela Tel. 050 359 4001

Services of open care of child protection:
Service chief Heikki Sillanpää Tel. 044 423 5478

E-mail addresses are of the format [email protected]

See also