where to start, when planning to move to Finland?

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chris h
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where to start, when planning to move to Finland?

Post by chris h » Thu Jun 19, 2003 2:13 am

this appears to be a great site!

i have many questions and it does not help being poor on the computer.

i am a british fireman wanting to live in finland, with my finnish wife.
what possibility would it be to join a large town fire service, i understand that there are mainly part time firefighers in finland.
my language is basic but i am willing to do what it takes to learn the language.
how easy is it to get on a language course full time?

i also remove dents from cars, its a big business in the u.k would there be any requirement for this skill in the bigger towns( do finns love there cars like us brits?)

i would be most grateful for answers to my questions.
cheers chris h



where to start, when planning to move to Finland?

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Sara
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Post by Sara » Thu Jun 19, 2003 11:56 am

Hi Chris!!

For the fireservice I would think you need to know the language with the risk of some situations. Someone will probably know better than me on that though.

Language courses are running all the time, you can pick them up at the university, small colleges and I think there are a few free courses around. It would probably be good if you good try and learn a bit more from your wife before you move, and perhaps you could consider buying a Finnish text book you could work through at home.

I think the dent removing business is probably a good one to be in, especially in the winter :wink:

When are you hoping to move?

Do you know all about the need for residents permits here?

Also welcome to the group!

There are quite a few Brits about so you'll feel at home here :D


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neil
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Post by neil » Thu Jun 19, 2003 12:06 pm

Hi Chris,

Welcome to .. You'll probably find that to continue to be a fireman, you'll need to spend several years here re-training unless there is some sort of EU conversion you could do but I doubt it. It takes 6 years here to become a police officer (insane I reckon) so I guess to become a fire fighter would be something similar to that.

Panel beating is the way forward in my opinion. Cars here are ridiculously expensive so people are keen to look after them. I am sure you could even get work in a garage here somewhere in the capital area fairly easily.

As for actually applying, you're probably better off taking some holiday in August/September and coming here in person. Either that, or do what a lot of other 'imported men' do - and that is just move here lock stock and figure the rest out once your here. It might mean a period of unemployment (6-12 months) but you'll get sorted out eventually.

Good luck :D
Neil

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PeterF
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Post by PeterF » Thu Jun 19, 2003 1:05 pm

Fluent Finnish is a dead cert requirement for any Emegency service employment, one of several reasons is the radio communications language is Finnish.
Panel Beating is best bet..but even with that work the lack of good Finnish could be a problem unless you are self employed ..I have yet to go to a car repair workshop and not had to speak Finnish..motor mechanics dont seem to rate English high on their must learn list :roll: .their Finnish vocabulary is a bit special also.... :wink: lots of words Äiti did not teach them :D some of them are almost the same in English..."Mis on mun fuurkin vasara?" :roll: "siirä sun fuurkin auto!" :roll:


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neil
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Post by neil » Thu Jun 19, 2003 5:20 pm

Panel Beating is best bet..but even with that work the lack of good Finnish could be a problem unless you are self employed
I beg to differ. If it is a garage that employs more than a couple of guys you would not necessarily need to interface with the general pubic at all.

I knew an American chap who was here but who has since moved back and he was a mechanic and was working for Sisu on their lorries as a maintenance person and he got on just fine.

If Chris was to start his own business here how would he commuicate with his customers at all? Surely being in a garage with others will be more beneficial?

Or perhaps its just pot-luck? :?

If you're wanting to come here then just sack it all in at home and come here and be unemployed for a while. You'll get full benefits since you're married. Get a cable internet connection and hang out/help others on this website and apply for jobs at the same time and you'll be right as rain :wink:
Neil

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PeterF
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Post by PeterF » Thu Jun 19, 2003 5:42 pm

neil wrote:
Panel Beating is best bet..but even with that work the lack of good Finnish could be a problem unless you are self employed
I beg to differ. If it is a garage that employs more than a couple of guys you would not necessarily need to interface with the general pubic at all.

I knew an American chap who was here but who has since moved back and he was a mechanic and was working for Sisu on their lorries as a maintenance person and he got on just fine.

:wink:
What I meant was he would need to communicate with the other staff e.g. the other mechanics and the workshop foreman...how does he get his work allocations and how does he discuss problems :?:
Sisu is a big organisation.. if the foreman speaks English your US friend was fortunate, but how did he communicate with his work mates in the coffee room etc :?: ...try talking English to the foreman in Stockman Auto, Delta or Lansi auto :roll: I have..if there is not someone near by that they can call on who speaks English they just walk away shaking their heads.. So I speak Finn-glish.. In smaller workshops..then if one is lucky.. there might be the chance of the young friendly guy who actualy want to practice his English...
back to advice .. I would suggest come here wander around the area where you intend to live find and walk into the "autohuolto" places and check them out..good luck


chris h
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Post by chris h » Thu Jun 19, 2003 8:45 pm

cheers people!

loads of good advice!
today i heard back from the emergency fire training principle in kuipio, he explains it would be know problem getting employed as a firefighter if i can speak the the language.
that my stumbling block!

so does anyone have an idea how long it may take a slow englishman to put his basics into sentances?

how easy is it to apply to one of these language courses?
and who do i apply to for finacial assistance?

i am not a panel beater, i fix smaller dents with various tools, this prevents the vehicle going to the panel shop, reducing the garages cost .

yes i was thinking of my own business, my partner could arrange the visits i do the fixing intially.

what help would i be able to get to set up my own business?

i am getting the aim of this, but i am sorry if i am going on a little, its all this helpful information.

thanks again people!


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Sara
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Post by Sara » Thu Jun 19, 2003 9:04 pm

chris h wrote:cheers people!

so does anyone have an idea how long it may take a slow englishman to put his basics into sentances?
you would be able to join the university for free (no fees) but depends if you want to do other courses too!


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Jun 19, 2003 10:16 pm

chris h wrote:so does anyone have an idea how long it may take a slow englishman to put his basics into sentances?
Well, if you take P who's been here good 20 odd years he manages to mangle his speech into such gibberish half the time if I didn't know he was speaking Finnish I'd tell him to stop speaking Geordie... Then again D, whose been attending some Finnish classes in London and come here I need not plug my ears, rather just correct him on the infliction of the verb in a certain situation... theres a bloke from the UK landed here in the 1970's and he's been script writing for Finnish tv some odd 20 years too.

The trick is to de-program yourself and speak slo-o-o-o-w-w-w, I tell O he sounds like a retarded Swede on acid if he speaks so fast. :mrgreen:

Education is free in Finland, and they acommodate immigrants, but unless you can understand what the people are saying you'll end up like the British tourist who got pinned under a falling billboard - people yelled at him to watch out, but as they yelled in Finnish...
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


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Post by Guest » Wed Jul 16, 2003 5:37 pm

If you check with the unemployment office in your area, you can get a full-time day course there.
It starts at 10.00 in the morning and continues until 17.00. Every day. Instruction language is Finnish, and only if you REALLY don't understand (after sign-language, drawing, cursing and fighting) they will tell you in English :ochesey:
It's a killer, but you will learn fast.


Caroline
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Post by Caroline » Wed Jul 16, 2003 6:50 pm

Chris H:

The length of time it takes to become fluent in Finnish depends on the individual, but in my case, even after having had years and years of successful prior foreign language studies, it took me about 5 years (both living in my native country and in Finland) to get to the point where I am now: can carry on a conversation at fairly normal speed, but have to listen carefully to the speaker, and I still use the dictionary often. I have used Finnish daily in a 6-month long work practice environment, as well as in a 2-month long "työvoimakoulutus" job promotion business training course, and both experiences were highly rewarding but EXHAUSTING. I would tend to reason that it is difficult enough to communicate in Finnish in a casual work or study environment where there are no emergencies; forcing yourself to quickly master something just so that you can carry on the same kind of work as in your home country is probably biting off more than you can chew. Don´t forget that coupled with job stress, you´ll also have culture shock and homesickness to deal with- before long you´d be headed for sairasloma. The reason why young Finns have little trouble finding all kinds of work in the UK, is because they start studying English as kids.

I´m not saying that your idea is impossible, but I do suggest that there are easier ways to challenge yourself, i.e. your business idea. Finland needs more businesses.

All the best to you, whatever you decide,

Caroline
Former expat in Finland, now living in New Hampshire USA.

Remembah whea ya pahked ya cah!


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Phil
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Post by Phil » Wed Jul 16, 2003 9:10 pm

neil wrote:. It takes 6 years here to become a police officer (insane I reckon) so I guess to become a fire fighter would be something similar to that.
...Helsinki University of Technology has a two-year Cowboy degree. ONLY two-years!!


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