Valona Elderly Services and STEP Education (Kirkkopalvelut ry)

KIRKKOPALVELUT is a Christian church related national co-operation and service organisation, which aims at building a just society, organises education and care services, and promotes the wellness of people. It is the background organisation of STEP Education and Valona Elderly Services, where the volunteering activities will take place.

VALONA ELDERLY SERVICES provides 24/7 care and support for elderly people. The aim of Valona Elderly Services is to provide good everyday life for elderly people by providing them with services planned according to their needs and wishes. Valona provides supported accommodation, health care, meals, and recreational activities for their elderly customers.

STEP EDUCATION (STEP-koulutus in Finnish) is a private educational learning institution, which offers different professional education, study programs – and also preparatory training, and short courses for people with special needs. Although being a mainstream vocational college, STEP Education offers and develops educational services also for immigrants and people with special needs caused by learning problems, mental disabilities, etc.

Activity topics

elderly people, health, education and training, disabilities, inclusion


The volunteer will mainly work at the Valona Elderly Services, which is located at the campus area of STEP Education in Pieksämäki. Pieksämäki is a small town in Eastern Finland. STEP Education is located 1,5 km away from Pieksämäki town centre. Nearby is a beautiful park, lake, and a small beach, so the location is great for a person who enjoys nature and peacefulness.

Volunteer’s role and tasks

Volunteers will work mainly at the Valona Elderly Services supporting and organising activities for the elderly people living at Valona centre. Volunteers will support the staff in organising recreational activities for the elderly people, for example, related to arts&crafts, or music, or going out for a walk. Volunteers also support the elderly during meal times and with beauty&wellness activities related to hair, hands, or feet. Volunteers can introduce their skills and interests to bring joy to the everyday life of elderly people. Volunteers will NOT have responsibility for any health-related issues (like medication or physiotherapy) and will always work in cooperation with the permanent staff members.

Volunteers will also participate in the activities of STEP Education and especially in the “Arjen Suola” group, where students with special needs study arts&crafts, music, home economics, and physical education. The aim of the studies is to support students’ personal growth and communication and teamwork skills. Volunteers will assist the teachers and instructors with organising educational activities and providing support for students with special needs. During the summertime STEP Education also organises courses and trainings for different groups of people, where volunteers can also participate and assist.

The role of the volunteer is to bring intercultural aspects to the everyday life of the Pieksämäki campus community, especially the elderly people and students with special needs, providing them a possibility for language practice and intercultural learning.

Volunteer’s profile

We are looking for a volunteer who is motivated to work with elderly people and has a respectful attitude toward them. It is important that the volunteer is open-minded and has good social and cooperation skills. Some knowledge or experience about working with elderly people or people with disabilities is an advantage, but more important is an open and positive attitude towards learning to work with these groups of people. It is also important that the volunteer is interested in supporting elderly people and people with disabilities to have good everyday life and learning experiences.

Accommodation, food, and transportation

Accommodation is provided at the student dormitory building situated in the STEP Education campus area. The volunteer will have a private room, but the kitchen, bathroom, sauna, and laundry will be shared with other volunteers and students. Most of the meals will be provided in the student restaurant. When the restaurant is closed during weekends or holidays, the volunteer will receive a food allowance. Volunteer lives and works in the campus area, so no daily local transportation is needed.


The premises of the voluntary workplace unfortunately are not suitable for volunteers with physical disabilities. If you are an applicant with a sensory disability, please contact Maailmanvaihto at for discussing in more detail if a volunteering period could be possible for you.

Website of the organisation

STEP Education:
VALONA Elderly Services:

How to apply?

Unfortunately, we don’t currently have any open positions. Please, check again later!

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