AF Bostäder’s caretakers have a broad job description with responsibility for everything from ongoing maintenance, repairs and inspections to taking care of outdoor environments. But the most enjoyable – and most important – is the social responsibility. Caretakers at AF Bostäder are to promote social sustainability, help the students settle in and contribute to wellbeing and security in the housing area.
“For many of them, the student housing at AF Bostäder is the first accommodation of their own,” says Linda Tjernström, former caretaker at Parentesen. “Besides the studies, it is the first time for them to take care of everything involved in running a home. We get questions about everything imaginable, such as rent matters, laundry rooms, cleaning and washing up or how to clean out a floor drain. Those who live on a corridor have joint responsibility for cleaning, so we help them to plan and organise – if it’s needed.”
“Many are far from home and their families, not least the international students,” says Max Lindahl, caretaker at Delphi and Kämnärsrätten. “In that case, it is important to have good social connections and good dynamics. We offer support in discussions about how we show consideration for each other, find ways to reach agreement and make joint decisions. We can also help to resolve conflicts and provide practical advice on matters concerning wellbeing and security. Everyone is to feel involved in their own housing and have the right to peace and quiet in their home.”
“As caretakers, we also work on developing the communal spaces,” says Sven-Erik Lönnqvist, former caretaker at Marathon. “We have a budget to use for activity rooms and social spaces. For example, we have set up a table tennis room, pool room and lounges for studies and socialising. It could also concern hammocks and mood lighting for the trees in the courtyard. It is much appreciated, and the students often put forward their own proposals, which we try to comply with.”
“An important part of the job is to be alert if someone seems to be lonely or feeling down, and in such cases ensure that the person concerned gets help. We always ensure that we are very visible, getting around among the students and talking to as many as possible. We regularly arrange events for everyone with communal get-togethers over coffee and cake, and activities in the courtyard, such as boule or a barbecue, something that has proved popular, particularly during the pandemic. The students are great to work with. As caretakers, we give a lot of ourselves, but we always get back a thousand times more,” concludes Linda Tjernström.
Latest update June 14, 2022