21.12.2016

A report on the past of child welfare

A report on the past of child welfare

From 2014 to 2016, researchers in history, ethnology, and social work at the University of Jyväskylä conducted a study on foster care in Finland between 1937 and 1983. The study was commissioned by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, and it was the first of its kind in Finland. In discussions in the Finnish Parliament, the lack of previous research on the topic was stated to be a problem. The study’s unique research material included approximately 300 interviews.

One aim of the study was to establish practices to prevent grievances, violence, and maltreatment in present and future foster care. The study report contains several proposals on how previous mistakes in child welfare could be avoided in the future.

Since its inception, the report has provoked much debate. However, the real impact of such projects emerges only after they have been completed.

The report is available to read in the Institutional Repository for the Government (in Finnish).