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Responsible for the service City of Helsinki

Early education and care options

  • Service
  • Helsinki
  • Public service

Daycare is offered in municipal daycare centres and in private daycare centres.

An electronic application to municipal daycare must be sent four months prior to the need for care.

In order to apply for private daycare, you must contact the desired daycare centre directly.

1. Child in daycare centres

Early education and care is offered in municipal daycare centres and in private daycare centres.

A child can attend a daycare centre

- no more than 5 hours per day

- 5-7 hours per day

- over 7 hours per day.

An electronic application to municipal daycare must be sent four months prior to the need for care.

In order to apply for private daycare, you must contact the desired daycare centre directly.

You can apply for private care allowance from Kela in the case of private daycare.

1. Family daycare

Family daycare can be

- group family daycare in facilities maintained by the municipality or in private facilities

- three-family daycare at the home of the families

- family daycare at the home of the caregiver.

An electronic application to municipal family daycare must be sent four months prior to the need for care.

For information on local private daycare providers, please contact the family daycare coordinator of the area.

You can apply for private care allowance from Kela in the case of private family daycare.

1. Playgroup club activities

Clubs are organised by municipal daycare centres and playgrounds.

All clubs are free of charge.

The clubs are intended for children of 2-5 years of age.

The clubs operate 1 to 4 days per week for approximately 3 hours per day.

In addition to municipal clubs, there are private clubs that entitle you to apply for a service voucher.

1. Hiring a nanny in the family's home

A family can hire a nanny in their home and receive home care allowance or private care allowance.

The family finds and chooses the nanny.

Before the job begins the family or the nanny books an appointment for an interview at the Department of Early Education and Care.

More than one family can hire a nanny jointly, thus, forming a so-called care ring.

The families forming a care ring can apply for home care allowance or private care allowance from Kela to hire a nanny.

1. Caring for a child at home

When caring for a child at home, you can receive home care allowance and the Helsinki supplement.

In order to be eligible for home care allowance, the child must be under the age of three not attending...

To whom and on what terms

Care may be given to a child who has not reached the age of compulsory education.

Day care may also be given to a child who has already reached the age of compulsory education, if special circumstances so require and care cannot be otherwise arranged.

A fee is charged for the service.

Providers of care at private day-care centres price their own services.

Background information

Care at a private day-care centre is provided by companies, communities or NGOs, supervised by authorities and regulated under the Early childhood education and care act.

For example, private day-care centres may offer early childhood education and care in different languages or following a specific pedagogical model, including Montessori or Steiner education. They may emphasise different hobbies or religious education.

The child’s parents may apply to Kela for a private day care allowance to cover some of the fees. This allowance consists of a care allowance, a care supplement affected by the family’s income and the possible municipal supplement. Some municipalities pay a municipal supplement to support child care.

Basic information

Responsible for the serviceHelsingin kaupunki
The service is provided byHelsingin kaupunki
Area Helsinki
Available languagesFinnish, Swedish, English
Text edited by: City of Helsinki
Updated: 11/18/2019