Photograph

Wivi Lönn

Vaalijalka (1) Sortavala (112) Hospital (1) Deaconess Institute (1) 1920 (21) 1930 (20) Tapiola sanatorium (1) Wivi Lönn (1) 1927 (15) Vakkolahti (5) 1910 (16) Jenny Ivalo (1) Sortavala Evangelical Society (1)


The project to build a hospital for the Deaconess Institute was initiated by the Sortavala Evangelical Society. The Domestic Mission Society of the Church of Finland stepped in to realise the project after the Deaconess Institute established by Finnish teacher Jenny Ivalo was incorporated into it 1906. The group of buildings designed by architect Wivi Lönn was completed on the shore of Vakkolahti bay in 1907. The hospital building consisted of two parts, one of which was used by the Deaconess Home and the other housing the hospital itself. The building has, in parts, three floors, with a wooden top floor and two lower ones built of stone. They are clearly visible in a photo taken from the lake side of the building in 1910, before the painting of the hospital.
Care provided by the Domestic Mission Society of the Church of Finland was not limited to the Hospital of the Deaconess Institute. Institutions maintained by the Domestic Mission Society in the town and rural municipality of Sortavala provided care to thousands of orphans, old people, mentally disabled children, people with mental health problems and epileptics throughout Finland, and the activities were continuously beind developed. For example in 1920, the society bought the Vaalijalka estate not far from the centre of town. The estate was used as a location for children's homes and, in the 1930s, a settlement for boys "showing potential for development". An institution for idiotic children was also established in the Vaalijalka area: the first building was completed in 1930 and the second a year later with support from the government. The Tapiola sanatorium for epileptics was completed in 1927 outside of town. It was intended as a special colony for men who were capable of working. Later, women and children were also admitted as patients.

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