University of Oulu, 2016

Kummi Family Programme for Students

Become part of the Kummi Family Programme

The Kummi Family Programme is open to international exchange and Master’s degree students of the University of Oulu. Students participate for a maximum of one year even if their degree programmes may be longer than that. For exchange students, priority is given to students staying in Oulu for a full academic year. The programme is not open to Finnish students.

Students live independently and not at the kummi family's home.

Students participating in the programme will be connected with a local family and become “kummiteltavat." Spending time with kummi families gives students the opportunity to immerse themselves in Finnish culture while sharing their own culture with the family. It is up to the students and families to decide how they spend time together and there are several options to choose from. For instance, you could go berry picking, make dinner together, host a movie night, attend a hockey game, spend a weekend at the kummi family’s summer cottage or walk the kummi family dog with your kummi siblings.

Please note that the Kummi Family is not expected to provide you with special and costly free-time activities such as trips.

Participation in the Kummi Family Programme requires commitment throughout the programme. Before you apply, please consider carefully whether you will have enough time to participate in the programme. You should be able to invest at least four hours per month to spend with your kummi family.

We wish that the student

  • is genuinely interested in the Kummi Family Programme;
  • is prepared to be actively in contact with the kummi family;
  • is willing to commit to the principles of the programme.

How to apply?

Applications for the 2020-2021 Kummi Family Programme will most likely open in summer 2020. Please read through the principles of the programme before submitting your application. The programme starts in the autumn semester and runs from September to May each academic year. Kummi families and students commit to the programme for one year at a time.

Kummi Family, who are they?

A kummi family is a local family that wishes to spend time with an international student of the University of Oulu. Families have diverse backgrounds regarding their family status, interests and hobbies. Spending time with the student offers the family a chance to share their everyday life, learn about other cultures, and practice language skills.

Families come in all forms from single parents to larger families of all ages. Some have children or pets while some do not. Some have lived abroad while some have not. What they all have in common is that they live in the Oulu area and have an interest in spending time with an international student.

Matching the families and students

Matching the families and students will take place in September. We pair families and students based on the information in the application. The more you share about yourself in your application, the easier it is for us to match you with a family. Please note that The University of Oulu may not be able to provide a family for every student. All students will be notified as to whether they have been matched with a family or not.

The students who are matched with a family will get an invitation to attend a get-together for kummi families and students in September. In this meeting, students will meet their kummi family for the first time. Make sure to exchange contact details with your kummi family at the meeting!

Contact information

For more information, please contact us at

Last updated: 28.10.2019