The Faroe Islands are considered to be a family-friendly society with a safe and peaceful environment and generous child and parental benefits and child care provision.
The accompanying spouse or cohabiting partner of a foreign researcher with a work permit in the Faroe Islands is free to take on any job position.
Job vacancies can be found in the local newspapers or in the Employment Registry . Everyone with a Faroese ID-number is also free to post his or her CV in this registry. In some cases the research institutes may assist with finding a job position for the accompanying spouse.
Another option for the accompanying spouse will be to study.
Same sex marriage
Same-sex marriage has been legalised in the Faroe Islands.
Female academic employees have the right to leave with normal salary for 24 weeks when having a child. The leave can begin 4 weeks before anticipated birth.
After the first 14 weeks from childbirth the mother and the father can divide the remaining weeks of leave with normal salary between them as they wish.
After the 24 weeks of leave with normal salary the mother or the father is entitled to leave with pay from the Parental Leave Fund until 46 weeks after birth.
The father is entitled to 4 weeks of leave together with the mother. If he goes on leave within the first 14 weeks after birth he will receive benefit from the Parental Leave Fund.
The grant from the Parental Leave Fund is based on the average salary received during the last 12 months prior to giving birth. The grant cannot exceed DKK 25,000 per month.
For Nordic citizens income earned in another Nordic country counts as basis for grant from the Parental Leave Fund.
After the paid leave, the mother or the father has the right to unpaid leave until 52 weeks after the birth of the child.
Parental Leave Fund (in Faroese)
Single parents are entitled to child maintenance from the parent who does not have the child on a daily basis.The maintenance can be paid in advance by the Department of Social Services if the person liable to pay the maintenance does not pay on time.
Single parents also have the right to a special public subsidy.
Health services during pregnancy and childbirth and health services for children up to the end of school age (16-17 years) are free of charge.
Children’s nurses examine the children in their home regularly up to the age of 18 months. If the child or the family has special needs, the nurse´s home visits can continue up to school age.
Foreigners moving to the Faroe Islands with small children must contact the children´s nurse in order to receive home visits.
General Practitioners provide medical checks up to the age of 5 and vaccinations according to a vaccination programme.
School nurses provide regular medical checks and personal interviews as well as parental guidance and information.
Gigni (in Faroese)
The municipalities provide day care for children up to school age. Day care can be provided in private homes or in day care centres.
Children with special needs can receive specialized pedagogical assistance in the day care centres.
Parents can register their children for day care six months before they move to the Faroe Islands.
After school care is provided in most municipalities for children in the early school years.
Parents have to pay a fee for day care for their children. In some mucipalities the fee will be reduced if the family has several children in day care.
The education system in the Faroe Islands is made up of three main levels: elementary school, secondary school, and higher education.
Education is compulsory for at least 9 years, normally beginning at the age of 7.
Faroese is the language of education in all Faroese schools. School children who move to the Faroe Islands are entitled to 20 additional lessons in Faroese.
All education in the Faroe Islands is free of charge.
The public elementary schools offer 9 years of compulsory basic education and an elective 10th year.
In Tórshavn Municipality, there are 10 public elementary schools and two private elementary schools.
Some public elementary schools also offer a special primary school class for six-years old children.
There are several types of secondary schools in the Faroe Islands building on the education received in elementary school.
Secondary schools can be divided into three groups: technical, business, and general education.
The diplomas awarded by the Faroese secondary schools are equivalent to those awarded in the Danish educational system.
Diplomas from the general secondary school and diplomas after a three years´ course in technical and business schools give access to higher education.
Higher education is offered at the University of the Faroe Islands. The university has five faculties and offers a number of degree programmes.
Bachelor degrees are awarded after three years of study. Master degrees build on bachelor level qualifications and are awarded after two years of study. Ph.D. is a three-year research degree awarded after the defence of a doctoral thesis after three years of study.
Vocational academic education is offered at the Business College.