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Promoting wellbeing and the ability to work

This service promoting wellbeing and the ability to work responds to the extensive need of support among long-term unemployed people and those with reduced employment capacity. The service has improved the functional ability of more than 270 clients especially in terms of their mental functional capacity. The service has activated clients, improved their labour market skills and helped them find employment or start education or training.

Implementation of the good practice

This good practice is an assessment, support and training service that helps the client transition towards working life. Clients receive coaching individually and in groups. Work with clients is divided into a three-month assessment period and a nine-month rehabilitative training period.

During the assessment period, clients have one individual session per week. The sessions consist of an assessment of the overall situation, supportive discussions, reviewing the client's work experience and educational background, jobs search training, plans for education or training, and deciding on the next step.

During the assessment period, clients also have group meetings once a week. The content of the group days (duration 5 hours) is related to life management, the ability to work and function, working life skills, physical activity groups and rehabilitative events. Clients are also encouraged to qualify for a variety of permits and licences required in working life. The project pays the training required for the permit or licence. Clients are also offered the opportunity to see a physician for a health or wellbeing assessment. It motivates them to take care of their health.

During the rehabilitative training period, clients have both individual sessions and coaching in groups. Individual meetings take place at least once a month and they include supportive discussions with the client, directing the client to examinations, treatment or rehabilitation as necessary, searching for work or training places, supported employment and monitoring the progress of the employment relationship, and workplace instruction.

The monthly group training session includes career coaching, IT training, activities that promote the ability to work and function, recreational events and cooperation meetings in which also the employment authorities take part.

An appropriation allocated for pay subsidies was used in this good practice. With the help of the appropriation, clients had the opportunity to work in a pay-subsidised employment relationship for six months.


  • Clients found that their work ability improved. On a scale of 0 to 10, they estimated that their work ability had risen from 6.8 to 7.3.
  • 45% of clients found that their mental functional capacity had improved
  • 38% of clients found that their physical functional ability had improved
  • 37% of clients found that their social functional ability had improved
  • Clients became more active and their ability to take initiative improved during the assessment period and during the rehabilitative training period
  • Clients' position in the labour market improved.                             

How to take advantage of the good practice

This good practice can also be copied for other target groups and the content can be tailored according to the target group. The initial phase of the service can serve as an initial assessment in the forthcoming growth services.

Competent personnel are important in the implementation of this good practice in both health care and social welfare.


Tuomas Koskela, North Ostrobothnia Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment. +358 295 038 506, tuomas.koskela(at)ely-keskus.fi

Further information on the project:

Structural Fund Information Service S20058
Priority axis 5. Social inclusion and combating poverty
Specific objective 10.1 Improving the ability of those outside employment to work and function