Voluntary military service for women
Are you interested in military service? You may apply to the voluntary military service for women if you are a Finnish citizen, 18-29 years old, and your state of health and other personal characteristics are suitable for undertaking military training. You may complete the service in all units and tasks available in the Finnish Defence Forces. Please consider that you need to have completed the military service by the end of the year when you turn thirty. This applies to both men and women.
Women may undertake the voluntary military service in all the services and branches. The requirements for the women’s voluntary military service include Finnish citizenship, 18-29 years of age at the service start and a state of health and personal suitability for military service.
Everyone starts from the same line
The training contents and requirements for women’s voluntary military service are identical with those set for men. Both women and men have equal opportunities to qualify for leadership training and for a prospective military career. The quotas for service tasks are free from gender bias and rather dependent on the set requirements and suitability. Women start their service conterminously with men. Further information on conscript training can be accessed online
Having completed the voluntary military service, the women remain part of the Finnish Defence Forces’ reserve and may receive orders to attend refresher training exercises on the same grounds as their male counterparts. Following 45 days of service, the women will remain subject to the Conscription Act until the end of the year in which they turn 60. Read more about the refresher training exercises.
This is how you apply for the service
1. Think about when you want to start the service and in which type of task
It is possible to apply for the July contingent of the ongoing year as well as the January or July contingents of the following three years. Please note that the July contingent of the application year will feature only a limited number of positions. Varied brigade-level units of the Finnish Defence Forces provide versatile service duties and tasks for those undertaking the conscript service. However, not all the duties and tasks can be carried out in every brigade-level unit. Become familiar with the service tasks.
2. Fill out the digital application: "Application to voluntary military service for women"
The application is accessible at the Finnish Defence Forces’ E-Service available at https://asiointi.puolustusvoimat.fi/. At logon to the E-service, verification requires mobile banking identification, electronic identification card, or mobile identification.
In the application, report your wishes concerning the service time and service location. Please keep in mind that submitting the application involves two phases. First, you provide in the E-service answers to questions relating to conscript service and your state of health. Then you save the draft, print out the filled-out application version, and book a medical examination by a medical practitioner.
If needed you can access the application application form here. Please note that you need to print out all the pages in order to be able to sign them.
3. Have your medical examination completed
Book a medical examination at your own municipal health centre, and remember to indicate that this examination is for fitness for military service. Please bring to the medical check a print-out of the application’s draft version and the form "Medical statement on the applicant’s state of health", to be filled out by the medical practitioner. The medical certificate form is available here. You can request reimbursement from the Finnish Defence Forces on the costs of the medical statement attached to the application. You request this compensation in the E-service as part of the same digital application. Please remember to ask a receipt or proof of payment while at the health centre!
4. Finalise your application no later than 1 March
Following the medical examination, please access the E-service again and attach the medical statement to your application. This done, the application with its documentation is now ready for submitting. The application with documentation attached must be submitted by 1 March. Your own Regional Office will help you out before and after the conscript service. You can look up the contact information here.
5. In case you apply for special forces, please see here for application instructions.
Based your application, you will be invited to attend the selection event
The selection event will provide you information on the voluntary military service, you will be interviewed and your state of health will be checked. Your Regional Office will organise the selection event during the course of April.
The selection criteria include accounting for the person’s state of health and personal qualities. In addition, those qualifying must be deemed suitable for undertaking military training to become (a) part of the Finnish Defence Forces reserve.
Prepare for the service
In case you become selected, you will be given an order to enter service in the selection event, or alternatively, this order will be sent to you in the post following the selection event. This order will clarify when and in which brigade-level unit you are to start the service. This order to enter service also doubles as your travel ticket, so please look after it with care.
Before entry into service, it pays off to increase physical fitness and tend to matters relating both to one’s health and finances.
In case you have second thoughts
As ordered to enter service, you must report, in writing (by email or in the form of a letter in the post), before your service is due to begin that you will refrain from starting the service. Once your service has begun, you may give notice within 45 days that you will discontinue your service. Following this time period, you have become liable for military service.
Within this 45-day time frame, the commander of a brigade-level unit can also revoke the order to enter service on the grounds of an injury, illness, evident unsuitability or other similar reason.