Ruijan kvääniliitto – The Norwegian Kven Association is a national voluntary organisation for all who consider themselves to be of Kven or Finnish descent. The organisation was established in 1987 and now has more than 1000 members. We have a total of 14 local organisations, mainly in Troms og Finnmark, but also in central eastern Norway and central Norway. We also have a separate nationwide youth organisation, Kvääninuoret – The Kven Youth, which has just over 100 members in total.

An executive committee is elected at the National Congress and is the organisation’s governing body between national congresses. The chairman of Ruijan kvääniliitto for 2020 – 2022 is Kai Petter Johansen, who is affiliated to the local organisation in Kvænangen/Naavuono.

Ruijan kvääniliitto is Norway’s biggest Kven organisation and represents a significant proportion of Kven opinion-bearers and Kven cultural and language users in Norway.

Kvens in Norway have national minority status and are protected by legislation and obligations pursuant to:

  • the European Council’s Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities
  • the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages
  • the United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, 1966, particularly Art. 27
  • the United Nations International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, 1966.
  • the UN Human Rights Committee’s interpretations of the covenants and optional protocols
  • the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, particularly Art. 30