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Tapojärvi’s annual donations of EUR 10,000 go this year to support the recreational activities of children and young people in Jällivaara and Sodankylä.
Jouni Salminen, a detective youth worker in Sodankylä, says that their customers are almost always disadvantaged, and their financial situation is extremely poor. Christmas presents are sorely needed by many young people.
“In Sodankylä, detective youth work has been in operation since 1995. When you’ve been doing this job for 30 years and you get a surprise like this, you can’t really find the words,” Salminen sighs happily.
“It seems somehow incredible that we in Sodankylä’s freezing Arctic detective work received such a sizeable donation from you. The aim is to use the donation for common sports and outdoor equipment, for example, so that as many underprivileged young people as possible would benefit from them in the future.”
The donation funds allocated to Jällivaara will also be spent on purchasing hobby equipment. According to Sara Källgar, Administrative Manager of the Municipality of Jällivaara, the municipality wants to support children’s and young people’s hobbies and enable different sports to be practiced regardless of the income level of the family.
The gift money donated by Tapojärvi will be used to purchase e.g. canoes as well as skating, skiing and riding equipment. A large part of the money will also go to support arts and crafts activities.
“Leather tools, for example, are expensive and many children cannot afford them. Leather work is an important part of Jällivaara’s culture and heritage. We want to make it easier for all children to have access to this hobby.”
“When you’ve been doing this job for 30 years and you get a surprise like this, you can’t really find the words.”
The group activities of Sodankylä’s detective work have always been sports clubs, of which floorball is the most popular. There are floorball clubs four times a week. Salminen says that in addition to floorball equipment, there is also demand for skiing equipment. Hikes and camps are also popular. Detective youth work organises 3-4 camps in wilderness conditions every year, so at least backpacks, tents, sleeping pads, sleeping bags, warm clothes and camping cookers are on the procurement list. The Sodankylä – freezing Arctic detective youth work website also has pictures of these clubs and excursions on Facebook.
In addition to acquiring various sports and outdoor equipment, the property for the use of youth work also needs renovation.
“This autumn we received a hall space from the municipality that does not have any furniture, tools or crane, and the heating of which only works with the help of an old wood heater. We will also spend part of the grant on furnishing the hall and purchasing equipment.”
The employees and customers of Sodankylä’s detective youth work are thankful, as there will be a lot of nice things next year that many people could not even dream of before November.
“Next year, we will take pictures for you of the renovated halls, floorball and bike activities and wilderness trips,” promises Jouni Salminen.
What’s up with those who received the donation last Christmas?
The municipality of Polvijärvi, which received the donation last year, considered the use of the gift sum for a long time. The municipality decided to spend the entire sum on the construction of Pumptrack, which is available to all residents. Pumptrack is especially intended for children and young people, but it is also suitable for the whole family’s physical activity.
“The track is a great place to improve your balance and learn new skills together with others. In addition, it is suitable for users of all ages and levels,” explains Sirpa Halonen, Leisure Coordinator at Polvijärvi.
In addition to cyclists, the asphalt-surfaced tracks can be used by kick bikers, skateboarders, roller skaters and kick boarders. The track is suitable for small kick bikers as well as professionals. The tracks will be designed to meet everyone’s needs. As skills increase, there are always new challenges on the track that allow meaningful exercise on the track year after year.
“We will also apply for Leader funding for the design and construction of the track. In addition, the municipality of Polvijärvi contributes to the design and construction costs,” Sirpa Halonen adds.
The finished track will be equally available to all residents and investing in it will bring joy for years to come. The progress of the Pumptrack project in Polvijärvi is communicated on the website of the municipality of Polvijärvi.
In Italy, Terni and Narni children’s hospitals received new furniture and testing methods
With the donation money, Terni children’s hospital acquired new furniture for the paediatric ward to improve the comfort and functionality of the ward’s lobby spaces. In addition to storage and seating furniture, a drawing board and sports mats were purchased for the lobby spaces to support children’s physical activity while waiting for doctors.
New scoring systems were acquired for Narni’s paediatric neuropsychology ward to help identify and distinguish a child’s autism from a developmental disability at the youngest possible age, and to facilitate diagnosis and provide guidance on how to treat various neurological developmental disabilities.