Pirkan Helmi in English

Pirkan Helmi is a non-governmental organization that works in the field of rural development. It is founded in 1999 to encourage rural residents to develop their own communities, environment and business. Pirkan Helmi is one of the 53 local action groups (LAG) implementing the Leader initiative in Finland.

The work in Pirkan Helmi is based on extensive co-operation between Pirkan Helmi and the local residents, communities, enterprises, organizations and municipalities. The principles of impartiality and confidentiality are central working methods.

Pirkan Helmi has a board and paid staff. The board is equally represented by 1) private residents, 2) local communities, business and associations, and 3) municipalities. The board has 16 members and it resolves which projects will be funded through Pirkan Helmi by evaluating the project applications.

Executive Manager, Project Advisor and Project Worker take care of the everyday work in Pirkan Helmi.


Pirkan Helmi operates in the southern part of Tampere region. The region of Pirkan Helmi consists of the municipalities of Valkeakoski, Akaa, Urjala and Pälkäne. The total area of the region is 1930 km² and there are about 48 270 inhabitants. In addition, there is also many leisure time residents of the area. There is lots of food processing, small scale industry and traditional handcraftsmanship in the area, and also wood processing and paper industry. There are lots of opportunities for housing, leisure time as well as entrepreneurship. The region has good connections to Tampere, Helsinki and Turku by highways, together with the busiest railway line in Finland.


Local action group’s work is always based on a development strategy drawn up before the beginning of each programme period. All projects receiving funding must be suitable to the Pirkan Helmi development strategy. A successful project is characterized by the following qualities: It is based on an actual need, own funding and temporary funding have been arranged and it must originate from among the local population.

The public funding for the Leader-projects comes from the European Union, the government of Finland, and the municipalities of the region. In addition to public funding, also the private sector provides funds. For the part of non-profitable development and investment projects, private funding can partly consist of voluntary work.


Our cooperation network, which has been created over twenty years of operation, is diverse and wide-reaching from local actors up to the international level. We consider international cooperation to be an important part of our operations. We have been involved, for example, in projects financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and in ERASMUS-financed projects, but we are also interested in projects financed by other parties. The most important criteria for assessing international and interregional projects are: the project is in support of the goals of the development strategy and brings added value for the development of the region. We also evaluate resources, know-how and goals when weighing our possibilities to participate in co-operation project.


If you are interested in project funding or co-operation, please contact us by email and we will serve you in English:

Executive Manager
Eliisa Vesisenaho

Project Advisor
Anna Kulmakorpi

Watch introduction video of Pirkan Helmi on Youtube. 


Pirkan Helmi also manages the local EUROPE DIRECT Häme & Pirkanmaa information centre. The service is produced together with neighboring local action group Linnaseutu. EUROPE DIRECT Häme & Pirkanmaa is a part of Finland's EUROPE DIRECT network, which in turn is part of the Europe-wide network of EU information centres. The purpose of the information centres is to increase interaction between EU decision-makers and citizens and to encourage citizens to participate in the debate on the future of the EU. Citizens can send us questions about the EU's operating policies, programs and priorities, and participate in events dealing with the future of the EU. We also go to schools to give presentations, organize debates about the EU and deliver official publications. All our services are free for citizens. The network is managed by the European Commission.

Contact us via email: europedirect@pirkanhelmi.fi

Or you can contact the centralized EUROPE DIRECT service: