Contact information
The Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters
Asemamiehenkatu 4
FIN-00520 Helsinki
Tel. +358 9 4542440

Executive director
Riitta Särkelä
Tel. +358 9 4542 4410, +358 50 63663

Development director
Sari Laaksonen
Tel. +358 9 4542 4443, +358 40 7469984



The Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters

The Federation helps families to change -brochure

The Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters, founded in 1945, is a nationwide child welfare organisation that helps children and families in difficult and insecure situations and prevents domestic violence.

The Federation is the central organisation for its 30 member associations. The member associations across Finland maintain 10 mother and child homes, six homes focusing on treatment of drug and alcohol-related problems and 12 shelters. Some of the associations focus on community care services. More than 10,000 people, approximately 4,000 of whom are children, use the associations' services every year.

As society has changed, the Federation has concentrated more on providing support for the family as a whole. It is particularly concerned with helping families in need and with the prevention of problems.

The work of the Federation is financed out of funds awarded by the Slot Machine Association (RAY), profits made by the Children’s Day Foundation maintaining the Linnanmäki amusement park, and funds raised by the Federation itself. The activities are financed out of charges for the use of the centre.

”Every child has to be saved for life”

The Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters is the voice and advocate of children and families in difficult circumstances in our society. We stand by families and are not afraid to tackle problems. In the days when single mothers needed support and shelter, a way out from disgrace, we founded homes for them. When domestic violence came out from homes and turned from a private problem into a social one, we created networks to help both victims and offenders. We do not merely talk about problems, we take action to change the lives of our customers as well as the society.

The current social development challenges us to build a more equal society, where a sense of community is enchanced and the weakest members are looked after. A total of 30 member associations across Finland provide professional help and voluntary support for families in need. The associations offer opportunities for people to be empowered by experiences of inclusion and equality.

Every child has the right to be safe and have a good life. Help offered at the right time prevents social exclusion and provides an opportunity for a fresh start.

Homes and shelters

The mother and child homes are one form of child welfare aimed at supporting parenthood and at helping families to find their own resources and strengths. A mother may enter the home while pregnant or with her baby, and the father can also stay there if necessary. Care is then planned according to the family’s needs. The home seeks to foster good child–parent bonding and to teach parents step by step how to cope with life and looking after their baby.

The shelters are service centres in which persons either suffering from or threatened with family violence can find help in overcoming a crisis. All the parties involved in the family violence situation receive attention, the primary objective being to safeguard the interests of the child at all times.
The shelters are on duty round the clock. The Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters opened its first shelter in 1979.

Community Care

The community care services include

  • Alvari family welfare in the client’s home
  • A Baby blues service for exhausted families with babies
  • Counselling and groups for abusive men
  • Family groups
  • An sos and counselling telephone service
  • Discussion and action groups
  • Kiddies’ clubs
  • child contact centre
  • Housing services

An agreement is made with the client’s local welfare of.ce on the charges for the mother and child homes and shelters. The community care services are financed partly by the Slot Machine Association.

Member associations of the Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters:

Etelä-Karjalan perhetyön kehittämisyhdistys ry
Etelä-Pohjanmaan Ensi- ja turvakotiyhdistys ry
Helsingin ensikoti ry
Kaapatut Lapset ry
Kanta-Hämeen perhetyö ry
Keski-Suomen ensi- ja turvakoti ry
Kokkolan ensi- ja turvakoti ry
Kuopion Ensikotiyhdistys ry
Kvinnohusföreningen i Jakobstadsnejden rf
Kymenlaakson Ensi- ja turvakotiyhdistys ry
Lahden ensi- ja turvakoti ry
Lapin ensi- ja turvakoti ry
Lapsen Kengissä ry
Lapsen Oikeus Väkivallattomaan Elämään LOVE ry
Lyömätön Linja Espoossa ry
Oulun ensi- ja turvakoti ry
Pienperheyhdistys ry
Pohjois-Karjalan ensikoti ry
Porin ensi- ja turvakotiyhdistys ry
Pääkaupungin turvakoti ry
Raahen ensi- ja turvakoti ry
Turvallisen vanhuuden puolesta - Suvanto ry
Tampereen ensi- ja turvakoti ry
Turun ensi- ja turvakoti ry
Vaasan ensi- ja turvakoti
Vantaan turvakoti ry
VIOLA - väkivallasta vapaaksi ry
Vuoksenlaakson Ensi- ja turvakoti ry
Ylä-Savon Ensi- ja turvakotiyhdistys
Äidit irti synnytysmasennuksesta ÄIMÄ ry