Immigrants in Pirkanmaa
At the end of 2015, the total population of Pirkanmaa was 506,114, of whom 21,485, or 4.2%, were foreign-language speakers. About 6.5% of all foreign-language speakers in Finland live in Pirkanmaa. As some of the immigrants have received Finnish citizenship, the proportion of foreign-language speakers describes the number of immigrants better than foreign citizenship. The most common foreign languages spoken in Pirkanmaa are Russian, Estonian, Arabic, Persian and English.
The greatest numbers of immigrants in Pirkanmaa have been recorded in Tampere and its satellite municipalities (Nokia, Ylöjärvi, Pirkkala, Kangasala, Lempäälä) as well as in Valkeakoski and Sastamala. There were 225,118 residents in the City of Tampere at the end of 2015, of whom 15,266 were foreign-language speakers, accounting for 6.8% of all residents.
Drawn by family reasons, work or studies
Immigrants arrive in Pirkanmaa for family reasons as well as to work and study. There are international degree students at four higher education institutions in Pirkanmaa (University of Tampere, Tampere University of Technology, Tampere University of Applied Sciences and Valkeala campus of Häme University of Applied Sciences).
Pirkanmaa also has experience of immigration for humanitarian reasons. Quota refugees have been received by such municipalities as Tampere, Lempäälä, Pirkkala and Punkalaidun; the latter is the base for a highly acclaimed project titled Immigrants in the everyday life of rural areas. Reception centres and group homes for asylum seekers currently operate in different parts of Pirkanmaa.
Advice and guidance in Pirkanmaa
The City of Tampere has an information point for immigrants, Maahanmuuttajainfo Mainio, which offers advice and guidance services for everyone in 16 languages. The city’s Talent Tampere network promotes encounters between employers and international talent as well as clarifies and coordinates existing services.
Active third-sector stakeholders offer versatile activities that promote (two-way) integration in Pirkanmaa and Tampere. They include the Finnish Red Cross, Mannerheim League for Child Welfare, Setlementtiyhdistys Naapuri association, Multicultural Youth Centre Kölvi for boys maintained by Setlementtinuoret Häme District, Tampere Evangelic-Lutheran parish and the Finnish Refugee Council (Organisation Incubator and Community Mediation Centre).