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Vuoden ulkosuomalainen 2017 -tunnustus

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Vuoden ulkosuomalainen 2017 -tunnustuksen Suomi-koulujen puolesta
vastaanotti Firenzen Suomi-koulun opettaja, Firenzen Suomi-Seuran puheenjohtaja Katia Brunetto. Kuva: Matti Porre/Tasavallan presidentin kanslia
Vuoden ulkosuomalainen 2017 –tunnustus Suomi-kouluille luovutettiin Kultarannassa Suomi-Seura ry:n johtokunta on myöntänyt Vuoden ulkosuomalainen 2017 -tunnustuksen maailmalla toimiville Suomi-kouluille. Vuoden ulkosuomalainen -tunnustuksen jakoi tasavallan presidentin puoliso Jenni Haukio Kultarannassa 15.6.2017.  Samassa yhteydessä ulkosuomalaisparlamentin edustajia tapasi presidentti Sauli Niinistön.  Suomi-kouluja on noin 140 (40 maassa) ja niissä opiskelee yli 4 000 ulkosuomalaislastan ja –nuorta. Suomi-Seura on valinnut vuodesta 1993 lähtien Vuoden ulkosuomalaisen. Tunnustus tullaan jakamaan kaikkille Suomi-kouluille elokuussa 2017 pidettävillä Suomi-koulujen opettajien koulutuspäivillä.

Juhlat - Our 40th Birthday

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We had a party! This was the scene at the Victory Hall in Mobberley on Saturday as we waited for remaining guests; we had around 100 in the end. Anyone wandering in by mistake would have looked on and probably thought it was a pretty typical social event, but maybe noticed the Finnish flags and the not very local accents. Would they have known it was Finnish? If they had, would they have been able to point to Finland on a map? Perhaps not; the UK has so many diverse communities these days, and the Finnish one isn't the most numerous by any means. But here was a nice cross section of the many Finns who have come to settle in the North West of England, Manchester in particular.

By July the School itself has long since finished for the year, and many of its members have gone away, some to enjoy Finland's here-one-moment-gone-the-next summer. I'm exaggerating - Finns may tell you it's like that, but summer is often a blessed time in Finland and I can well remember being a…

A few days to go! Get your tickets now!

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That's right, our big 40 Year Anniversary party is only a few days away, this coming Saturday! And we do have a few tickets left, so if this little reminder makes you realise you can come after all, don't hesitate, leave us a message on our Facebook page, and we'll sell or reserve a ticket for you, no problem.

Where is it?"I've never heard of Mobberley!" No, I hadn't either, but Kari found it for us and it's very easy to find, close to the airport, M6 and M56, near Knutsford. It's called Victory Hall; it looks like a nice place, with everything we need. What do we get? Well, there will be a few words to start with, some awards, along with some artwork by school members on display. Then, we're in for a fabulous treat, a buffet featuring some top quality traditional Finnish food, followed by music, a raffle and more.

It'll be nice to see people. Some old friends are coming, as well as current members, not to mention visitors from the wider N…

Our 40th Anniversary Party!

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Here it is, coming very soon!
The time is near, for the Manchester Finnish School's big celebration of 40 years in existence.
It's a helluva thing, when you think about it. Not so much the sheer length of time, because many clubs and societies and voluntary groups carry on for decades or even the odd century. But it's an impressive status because it represents a very special continuity, of Finnish people in the North West and in Manchester in particular. The first generation came here and set up the School in the Sixties, and many are still around - in fact, one is still teaching, brilliantly, and inspiring us all! Many more have come to Manchester since; some have eventually gone back to Finland, but many have stayed for good (the craziest of all crazy Finns??).

So, we're having a party. It will kick off with a few worthy words, some special awards and such, but the main aim is to celebrate with fun and good food. We certainly haven't forgotten the kids, either, …

Modern Life!

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Modern Life! – Finnish Modernism and the International Dimension is an exhibition still running at the Helsinki Art Museum (it's situated next to the big cinema in the Tennispalatsi, next to Kamppi) until the end of July - and parts of it will continue until later on in the year. If you're in Helsinki during the Summer or passing through, I'd encourage you to take a look. Although the title may not tell you very much, it's a major part of Suomi 100 and for myself, it was eye opening. The thing is, when you start to learn about Finland and its history, you hear a lot about the struggle for independence and in particular, the Winter War. Those are certainly extraordinary stories, but surely far more impressive is what Finland has achieved in peace. In population terms, Finland is tiny, and yet, as this exhibition at HAM shows, it has had a major impact all over world culture.
The exhibition is wide ranging and you will be familiar with many of its elements, especially su…

Suomi-koulun oppilaita ei tietojemme mukaan ollut terrori-iskun uhrien joukossa

TIEDOTE

Manchester, 23.5.2017 klo 12 BST

Suomi-koulun oppilaita ei tietojemme mukaan ollut terrori-iskun uhrien joukossa

Manchesterin Suomi-koulun tietojen mukaan eilisiltaisen terrori-iskun uhrien joukossa ei ollut suomikoululaisia.

On todennäköistä, että suomikoululaisten kaveripiirissä on perheitä, joihin terrori-isku on vaikuttanut. Ohjeita kriisitilanteiden käsittelyyn suomeksi ja englanniksi saa mm. seuraavilta sivuilta:

suomeksi: http://yle.fi/uutiset/3-8762408
englanniksi: www.thetimes.co.uk/nspcc/index.html

Otamme sydämestämme osaa terrori-iskun uhrien omaisten suruun ja toivotamme suomikoululaisille ja heidän vanhemmilleen voimia asian käsittelyyn. Ulkosuomalaisen yhteisön jäsenten tuki toisilleen on tässäkin asiassa korvaamatonta.

Konsuli ja lähetystö avustavat tarvittaessa ja heihin voi olla yhteydessä, jos ei esimerkiksi saa omaisiin yhteyttä.

Lähetystö: Riitta Kukkonen, riitta.kukkonen@formin.fi, puh. 0799 0887 846.
Manchesterissa kunniakonsuli: Chris Rostron chris.rostron…

Vappu 2017

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Vappu is the traditional Finnish 1st May festivity, but because of our fortnightly school sessions it's rare that we manage to celebrate it on the actual date. And it's Manchester. The stereotype is that it rains all the time, which just isn't true. But at this time of year the weather is often 'changeable' (or some such euphemism) and we've not been able to do anything at all, except a desultory escape to the pub. (Remember, click on a picture to see it larger)

So, our nearest possible date was 6 May, and after school we headed across Sale to Worthington Park, to the corner with lots of picnic tables. The weather... It was sunny and warm the day before, and would be pleasant again a couple of days later, but you'll notice lots of warm tops in the pictures. Thankfully it didn't rain, and we probably decamped sooner than we might have done. Pity. But Heidi and Lawrence brought a mini barbecue (and some very nice sima) and everyone was grateful for that. …

Manchester's Finnish Festival of Orienteering

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The Honorary Consul of Finland in co operation with Manchester and District Orienteering are putting on a themed weekend of Orienteering activities in order to celebrate and make the UK Orienteering Community aware of the 100 years of Finnish Independence.
The weekend (Friday 13th to Sunday 15th October 2017) will show how traditional Finnish forest orienteering as enjoyed in Finland and the UK has developed. The themed weekend is being promoted to the whole UK Orienteering Community as a Festival of Orienteering celebrating Finland's 100 years of Independence.
Notably, for the urban event we will have local Finns at strategic points around the town to inform the general public what the event is about and to promote Finland at the same time and hopefully wearing Suomi 100 T-shirts. The Local Council in Stockport representing over 250,000 residents are keen to help promote Finland's 100 year celebration as part of the urban event being held in the Town Centre.
The wee…

What bear?

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Victor has been coming to the suomikoulu for a long time, and has had time to explore many of the more interesting nooks and crannies across Finland. He's become an expert on Finland's railways, and uses them to get about. 
Towards the end of summer last year, he could be found up near Kuusamo, visiting a wildlife refuge while staying with friends.
Their guide was an affable old gentleman, who set up the encounter we see here. One hopes it's just a trick of camera perspective that makes Victor's new acquaintance seem so close! (click on either of the pictures for a larger view)
Victor was very struck by their guide's relationship with the bear. He made sure that there was always a good distance between the group and the animal. But isn't it funny how sometimes a wire fence can seem a bit inadequate? However, he was quite happy to wander into the bear's enclosure himself - obviously the bear knew him and they were perfectly familiar.
All interesting wildlife …

Manchester Consular Association Gala Dinner 17/11/17

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From Chris Rostron:

Manchester Consular Association's (MCA) Annual Dinner will be a celebration of Finland's 100 years and will be looking to the future on Friday 17th November 2017.

The event will promote Finland to the countries represented by the MCA's Consul Generals, Honorary Consuls representing over 30 countries,  also local dignitaries: such as the Lord Lieutenant, who represents the Queen; the High Sherriff, who represents the British Judiciary; the Lord Mayors and Mayors representing the Local councils in the Manchester Area.

The Ambassador of Finland in the UK is the Guest of Honour and the Honorary Consul of Finland will be the President of the Manchester Consular Association. Their speeches will help raise the profile of Finland by showing how Finnish products are part of everyone's daily life, and promote Finland, its achievements and future direction at the event.

Secondly, the event will provide a Gala occasion for the Finns in Manchester and the surround…

Laskiaispullat

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And no sooner is one seasonal cake baked and eaten, than we have another!
This week, the suomikoulu organised a competition to see who could bake the best laskiaispulla, and these were the entries. Heidi won, quite rightly - anteeksi, I can't remember which one of these was hers, but I suspect it was A - but Kari and Ria-Noora came close with some tasty looking bakes.

Heidi told us about a dispute, which goes way back, as to the proper filling for the laskiaispulla, almond paste or raspberry jam, and we also held a poll to find out what people thought (result not yet in, but it looked as if raspberry jam was shading it).

I had a go, and it was time consuming - grinding the cardamom, and of course kneading the dough and performing all those unholy rituals trying to persuade it to rise - but fun. I'll definitely do this again - after seeing the other entries I know what I'm aiming for!

Runebergintortut

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Hyvää uutta vuotta!
And with no pause for breath, let me show off this baking effort - it's my first ever attempt at Runeberg cakes ie. Runebergintortut :)

They'll be available everywhere in Finland at the moment (properly baked ones, that is!). They're traditionally baked to celebrate Runeberginpäivä, the 5th February. J.L. Runeberg is regarded as Finland's national poet - he wrote the original Swedish words for Finland's national anthem - and is an excellent excuse for these tasty treats. I've become quite an addict, since I've often been in Finland at this time, and I've sampled the gamut from posh ones at Stockmann in Helsinki, to vegan/organic ones at an 'alternative' cafe in Joensuu. Which were actually very nice, but then home baked is always best, isn't it?

So I thought, what about baking some myself? And why don't you have a go as well, if you never have? I found I already had several recipes in various books. They do vary, so h…