For the year 2019, a total of 19,5 million euros have been allocated to 28 shelters that accommodate altogether 202 family places. The funding of the shelters has been increased in few years (2017-2019) by 45 per cent. The shelters are open for anyone — women, men and children of all ages —who have experienced or have been threatened of domestic violence. Children usually stay in the shelter with a parent. The above-mentioned law enabled also adults with no children to enter a shelter while previously shelters accepted only women accompanied with children. The shelters cover geographically different parts of Finland and include places for the Swedish speaking minority, as well as migrant women and children. The majority of the shelters are also accessible for persons with disabilities.
In 2016, the National Institute for Health and Welfare piloted a so-called remote shelter project for sparsely populated areas which involved establishing a 24/7 remote shelter in connection with a social and health care unit. Psychosocial support for shelter customers was provided from a central shelter via remote access. The operation of the remote shelter in the pilot area has been made permanent from 2017 onwards with the help of Government funding. The aim is to have similar remote shelters in other sparsely populated areas in the future. A shelter is meant to be a short-term refuge during a crisis. The length of the stay is always based on individual needs. A shelter has staff available 24 hours a day and victims can go there either on their own initiative or on referral. It is possible to go to a shelter anonymously. Staying in a shelter is cost-free to the client.
The shelters are financed and overseen by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health while the National Institute for Health and Welfare is responsible for the national coordination and development of the shelters.
Source of Information