Reader ‘s opinion The young person may have to wait for help for weeks

Young people even have stagnant experiences of how “drugs are now easier to get than help from mental health services”.

In Helsingin Sanomat difficult access to mental health services has been highlighted. It is important to disclose children’s and young people’s own experiences of access to services, their adequacy and effectiveness.

During the time of inclusion in the developer group, experiential experts in child protection have pondered how impressive and far-reaching it is to get help just when you need it yourself. On the other hand, young people experience loneliness, despair and alienation in a situation where they do not receive help or have to wait for reception time for several weeks. Young people even have stagnant experiences of how “drugs are now easier to get than help from mental health services”.

It is always not just a question of the amount of money but, above all, what it is used for. What additional costs for child protection are actually spent? Three million can be a significant amount properly targeted, but a negligible investment scattered here and there.

How young people feel that existing services are right for their situation can only be ascertained by asking themselves. The service should also be of uniform quality and everyone should have the same access to help. How to ensure that the only route to mental health services does not pass through a child protection clientele? And are the services available if the young person is “safely in custody” in the institution?

Professionals have a lot of skills and insight to implement new services. On the other hand, customers have first-hand knowledge and experience of what kind of service would be as useful as possible in their situation. Service providers, on the other hand, should have the ability to act and respond agilely to changing needs. Collaboration between professionals, customers and decision-makers to develop services is one way to increase the effectiveness of services. It requires a new kind of attitude and a desire to create a dialogue between the service provider and the users of the service. As a result of development work, a child or young person can, at best, become part of their own life and part of a more functioning society.

Maya Waitara

and a number of other young child welfare experts

Inclusion Time Association’s development group

Reader opinions are speeches written by HS readers, selected and delivered by HS editorial. You can leave a comment or read the principles of writing at

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