NGOs as Employers in Finland: A Case Study of Jyväskylän Katulähetys in the City of Jyväskylä
This is a qualitative study which examines one NGO as an employer in the Finnish city of Jyväskylä. The case study NGO is Jyväskylän Katulähetys and empirical data for the study was collected from 16 employees and from an official of the NGO using questionnaires, interviews and participant observation. All the respondents were aged between 26 and 53, and they had been unemployed between 1.5 and 10 years. The data was analysed through content analysis and the findings revealed that, the NGO employs predominantly long-term unemployed people from disadvantaged groups such as alcoholics, drug addicts and ex-convicts, on a 1-2 year contract basis. As a result, the NGO was found playing an important role in the employment of long-term unemployed people in the city of Jyväskylä because, they face difficulties in getting employed both in the public and private sectors, due to their lack of academic and professional qualifications. However, the skill development training of the NGO was found to be inadequate for enhancing the employability of their employees in the open labour market at the end of their contract. Thus, the study concluded that for the NGO to become a potential employer in the city of Jyväskylä, it must improve the skill development training of their employees, and also increase collaboration with other stakeholders that are working towards the same objectives.
Keywords: NGOs, Third Sector, Finland, Employment, Unemployment, Employment Subsidy
Dr Thomas Babila Sama, PhD
PhD Student, Unit of Social and Public Policy