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Today in “Let’s meet”, we would like to introduce you to Manuel. Manuel is from Portugal and has been living in the Netherlands since 2018. He studies International Land and Water Management. Manuel works as a Handyman at Nano in Wageningen besides his studies. “I’ll take on any chores that come my way, like repairing home appliances. Consider the changing of a light bulb or fixing a leaking faucet. I also do handiwork around the building like replacing a pipe or fixing doors.”

Manuel started working as a handyman at Nano, because he wanted to gain experience in repairing various appliances. “I think it’s important for me to be able to repair everything in my house, without having to hire someone else to do it. Plus, I think that Socius Wonen is the right environment for me to further develop myself. You get a lot of responsibility and you learn how to deal with complex issues or situations.”

Social contact I get from residents is what makes my job as a Handyman fun:. “I like it when the residents show interest in me and in the work I do. I also like it when the residents are happy with the results and invite me in for a coffee. I love coffee!” Besides the social contact, Manuel enjoys seeing progress in his work: “I notice that I am really learning stuff and I feel proud that I’m constantly gaining experience as a handyman.”

Aside from being a handyman, Manuel is also a resident at Nano. “I like the fact that Nano has a lot of young residents. This makes it easier to talk to others and you can make friends quickly.” Within Nano, Manuel is part of a residents committee. “Before the corona crisis, I organised a lot of social activities, including 3 big parties. The parties are my fondest memories of living at Nano, because not only residents came, people from outside the building also joined in. It is a great way to meet new people.” In these crazy times Manuel has occasionally organised a barbecue, with appropriate social distancing of course.

Due to the corona crisis Manuel has found new hobbies: “I spend a lot of time in my own room and think it’s important that my room is the best living space possible. As you can see, I have a large aquarium and a lot of plants. I think it’s interesting to learn more about looking after plants. We have also started a community project with a number of residents, namely creating and maintaining an aquaponic.” An aquaponic is a fish aquarium with plants or vegetables growing on top. The fish provide nutrition for the plants, and the plants provide oxygen.

Additionally Manuel thinks Nano’s location is beautiful: “We have a lot of forest in the neighbouring area so I often take my mountain bike out for a little spin. I also go for regular walks in the area.”