Opinmäki learning centre won the International Association of Educating Cities Award on Good Practices on Living Together in Cities in spring 2016. The award jury appreciated that the residents had participated actively in the planning of Opinmäki and the Suurpelto residential area. The award also highlighted good practices created in Opinmäki and collaboration between the different actors of the centre. In Opinmäki, people of all ages with different cultural backgrounds have been are able to learn together and meet with one another.
The City of Espoo was granted the award in Rosario, Argentina on June 4th 2016. To mark the International Day of the Educating City on November 30th, the award was handed out to the Opinmäki residential community in a festive event on Saturday 3rd of December 2016. The award was received by representatives of the different actors of Opinmäki; cultural services, the library, sports and youth services as well as representatives of the local residential association Suurpelto Association. Students of the Espoo Music Institute performed songs. The festive event simultaneously opened a Christmas event in Opinmäki, where different actors filled the learning centre with arts and crafts. The Christmas event – also visited by Santa Claus – was organised in cooperation by Suurpellon Martat, Suurpelto Association, Espoo International School and its parent association, Päivänkehrä school, AKKU and Suurpellon markkinointi Oy.
The International Day of the Educating City has been established by the International Association of Educating Cities (IAEC) to create awareness of the importance of education in the city and make the commitment of local governments to education visible. Its first edition was agreed to be celebrated on 30 November 2016. The City of Espoo participated in the Day with a support message voiced by Mayor Jukka Mäkelä. During the day, more than 140 Mayors from 17 countries contributed with a message for education.
Director of Education Kaisu Toivonen, Chairperson of the City Board Markus Torkki, Chairperson of the Suurpelto Association Eira Mononen and the CEO of Opinmäki Pekka Vikkula in the award ceremony. Photo:Espoo Finnish Education.
The five-person singing group of the Espoo Music Institute performing in the award ceremony. Photo: Espoo Finnish Education.