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What is the Youth Academy?

We promote the participation of young people by collaborating with schools, educational institutions, businesses and communities. We improve the abilities of adults to work with young people and strengthen youth participation.

Here at the Youth Academy we believe that when a young person feels included, their trust in their own influence, other people and society is strengthened. That is why we use projects, service design and gaming pedagogy to create solutions which allow young people to influence the things that matter to them.

We are closely connected to schools and youth leisure activities. Our experts have extensive skills in and experience of inclusive ways of working, facilitation and interaction. Collaborating with us allows our partners to offer young people the space to do things, learning experiences, and varied opportunities to influence the work of organisations. 

Our funding comes from projects, and in addition to public funding we also receive support from foundations and corporations. 

Extensive experience in promoting participation

The Youth Academy was founded in 1994 by national youth and sports organisations. The aim was for the Youth Academy to reach the young people who weren’t involved in societies and hobbies. The core aim of our work is to ensure that all young people are connected to phenomena in society that is meaningful to them and feel that they are able to control their own lives.

The Youth Academy Board 2022

The board is made up of representatives of our member organisations, and it steers the work of the Youth Academy.

Saara Hyrkkö, Chair
Tomi Härmä, The Finnish Youth Association
Anton Hietsilta, The Union of Local Youth Councils in Finland
Heljä Pitkänen, The Finnish Federation of Settlement Houses
Jari Pulkkinen, The Church Council
Marika Sarha, 4H in Finland
Maria Ulvinen, The Finnish Olympic Committee
Deputy member:
Sami Säynevirta, The Finnish Nature League

Our member organisations:
The Church Council / Family matters
The Finnish School Sport Federation
The Finnish Nature League
The Mannerheim League for Child Welfare
4H Finland
The Cultural and Sports Association of Finnish Vocational Education and Training, SAKU
The Finnish Federation of Settlement Houses
The Finnish Youth Association
The Union of Local Youth Councils in Finland
The Guides and Scouts of Finland
The Finnish Workers’ Sports Federation
The Finnish Olympic Committee
The Finnish Epilepsy Association
The Peace Education Institute