Child welfare aftercare

We support children and young people who have been taken into care or who have been in foster care and their networks after foster care has ended.

Child welfare aftercare supports children or young people who have been taken into care or placed in foster care for more than six months as well as their networks after foster care has ended. The wellbeing services county is always obliged to arrange child welfare aftercare after foster care and long-term open care placement have ended, regardless of the child's age. The service is voluntary for the customer. As a rule, the wellbeing services county where the child or young person resides is responsible for arranging aftercare. When the child returns from foster care to their parents, the aim of aftercare is to support the family in the changed situation. In this case, the family is supported by child welfare measures. A young person becoming independent during aftercare is supported in arranging housing and independent living, health-related matters, social relations, financial matters and applications for assistance as well as in plans for studies, work and other aspects of life. Aftercare can also provide support for parenting when the young person has children. A social worker is responsible for aftercare, who will draw up a client plan for aftercare together with the young person, i.e. an aftercare plan. If aftercare begins immediately after foster care when the young person turns 18, an aftercare plan is drawn up and work is commenced in good time before the end of foster care. In addition to the social worker, the young person in aftercare is supported, for example, by social counsellors. During aftercare, meetings are set up with the young person at the office and, if necessary, in the young person's own home or elsewhere. During aftercare, the young person may receive financial support for hobbies and meeting relatives and loved ones. If the young person in school applies for social assistance, they are not required to take a student loan. If the young person has saved up funds to become independent during foster care, these can be used to support independent living by planning their use together with a social worker. If there are no such funds, the young person may be granted financial assistance for aftercare. The young person's own network or other network is also welcome to cooperate in their aftercare, if the young person so wishes. When support for aftercare expires at the latest when the young person turns 25, they will be referred to other services, if necessary

Conditions for receiving the Service

A child or young person can receive aftercare after foster care has ended. Aftercare must always be provided after a child has been taken into care and after open care placement when the placement has lasted continuously for at least six months and the child has been in placement alone. Child welfare aftercare is most commonly provided to young people aged 18-25 who are becoming independent after foster care, and its planning is already started during foster care. However, children who return home from foster care as minors to live with their family are also entitled to aftercare when it has been less than five years since the child welfare client relationship ended. Aftercare can also be provided in other situations on special grounds. The conditions and criteria for aftercare are provided in Section 75 of the Child Welfare Act (417/2007).

The service is free of charge.