Återbruk for students
Återbruket, the LiU system for the reuse of furniture and other equipment, was an immediate success when it opened in April 2016. It’s now time to take the next step. Under the auspices of the student society Navitas and with economic support from the climate fund, Studentåterbruket is now starting to take form.
Every year in June, many students leave behind student life, the city, and their lodgings. Many have obtained furniture for temporary use, just for the period of their studies, and want to sell it when they move. However, demand is low at the beginning of the summer. New students don’t arrive in Linköping until the start of term in August, and it’s then that they need both housing and furniture. In addition, many international students move to Linköping for even shorter visits.
This gap over the summer was something that student Eva Vollmer had her eyes on. Eva is a master’s student in social work with a focus on sustainability and entrepreneurship, and is active in the Navitas student society, which promotes sustainable development.
Micke Nilsson, who runs Återbruket at LiU, was thinking along the same lines. He was working closely with the then environmental strategist at LiU, Anna Karin Unger, who introduced him to Eva Vollmer. And then things moved rapidly.
“The first time we met was in October last year”, says Micke Nilsson. “And we received the go-ahead in February. We submitted an application to the fund for climate offsetting and it awarded us SEK 50,000, which we will use for start-up costs such as transport and signage.”
Navitas will organise the operation of Studentåterbruket, which will be open on certain days and times in the week. Micke Nilsson, who built up the LiU Återbruket, will support them along the way.
“They can pretty much just copy the concept and logistics of Återbruket, with an online market place in the LiU collaboration system Lisam. We will let Studentåterbruket take over the storage space we have used in the A Building basement. This is a perfectly suitable location, and it has access by a lift.”
Students can donate furniture to Studentåterbruket, or sell it to another student. In the latter case, the transaction is between the buyer and the seller. Navitas will not be involved in these transactions and will not deal with any money.
“Navitas has carried out a survey among students, and many of them are very positive to the idea of a student-based reuse system”, says Eva Vollmer. “And I have also had enquiries from international students who want to know when we will start operation.”
It was initially planned to start this summer.
“But there’s not enough time. We’ve decided to aim for the end of the year, instead”, says Eva Vollmer. “During the summer we’ll draw up policy documents and guidelines for how the system is to work. And we’re now looking for staff to employ at Studentåterbruket.”
Translated by George Farrants
Last updated: 2019-05-13