Culture for children
Culture for children means educational courses in the arts and culture, and cultural heritage for children and young people, the provision of the arts and cultural heritage to them, and art and culture produced by children and young people themselves. Culture for children entails both the experience of art and culture, and acquiring related knowledge and learning skills. Culture for children relates to activities for children and young people under 18 years old.
The promotion of the culture for children is a priority for the Ministry of Education and Culture.
The Ministry endeavours to implement the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the rights of children to have access to art and culture as enshrined in the Constitution of Finland. Art and culture are integral to an all-round education, and especially important for the personal development of children and the young in general. The Ministry supports cultural work for children that is first-rate in terms of its arts and culture content, child and young person-oriented, provided by professionals, accessible to all children and young people and respectful of cultural diversity, and that promotes creativity among the young.
The Ministry's goal is for art and culture to be a permanent element in the lives of children and young people as a result of the work of children's arts centres, organisers of basic courses in the arts, arts institutions and departments, museums, theatres, orchestras, libraries, heritage associations, and other organisations and institutions involved in the arts and culture.
To accomplish its goal, the Ministry sponsors the work of 26 regional children's arts centres, the Association of Finnish Children’s Cultural Centres and Taiteen perusopetusliitto (the Finnish association for basic education in the arts).
The forms of financial support available include the project grantsmade available every year by the regional arts councils.
Children's culture prizes
Every year the Ministry of Education awards the Children's Day Prize. The prize is awarded to two organisations for their work in promoting artistic endeavour and education in the arts. The Ministry asks the regional arts councils for suggestions for recipients of the prize. The prize has been awarded since 2000.
The Children's Culture State Award granted each year by the Arts Promotion Centre Finland is described more fully on the Centre's website.
Culture club activities based on the wishes of children and young people
Since 2016, the Ministry of Education and Culture has promoted children’s and young people’s participation in cultural activities by offering opportunities for taking part in various arts and culture activities during the school day. The provision of such opportunities during the school day is based on the wishes that children and young people themselves have expressed. The activities are organised by professionals in arts and culture. Leisure activities have been organised in daycare centres, too.