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Covid-19 update: We would expect you to have quarantined for 14 days before entering our home, or to provide a negative PCR test taken 5-10 days after the last exposure, or to provide evidence of double vaccination. You should practice strict social distancing while staying with us, ie wearing masks and not spending prolonged time indoors with other people. For the same reason, we are only looking for long-term visitors right now. Please address the measures you are currently taking, and the ones you are willing to adopt, in your message of application. For a useful basis for our discussion see the links below. Let me know if you have any questions!
We're a single parent and a 3.5 year old building intentional community. We live in a quieter corner of Berlin-Schoeneberg/Wilmersdorf, an area in west Berlin that gives you easy access to cultural spots as well as parks and urban nature. Grunewald and Wannsee are relatively close, and we live right by the U7, which takes you directly to Hermannplatz and other stops in Neukoelln. We live on our own but usually have a care collective - a large network of chosen family and friends who meet with us regularly to help out with the baby and form part of our lives. Most of us are people of colour and lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer or transgender, and involved in arts or activism of some kind. Due to Covid-19, we're socially distancing but stay in regular contact with the fam via zoom and occasional hangs in the park, playground or in our backyard.
I am working from my home office, getting my second vaccination in July, and have been physically distancing since March. Jade is in a small daycare nearby while the numbers are very low, unless there's a lockdown or case at the daycare in which case she stays home. We are looking for a pod that is as “droplet bonded” as possible.
Your main task is to watch Jade. You will also help out around the house as fully as any adult flatmate would. Shared tasks include cooking, cleaning, laundry, shopping, and other errands. While watching Jade, you will play with her at home or in the park or playground. You will clothe her, feed her, make her lunchbox, or pack her bag as required.
Things kiddo is learning right now:
Putting on & taking off clothes (this could easily kill 1h...). Going to the toilet. Hand washing. Tidying up. Making ties and bowties. Counting in different languages (1-15). ABC and number songs and puzzles. Cutting with scissors. Drawing & writing: Humans, animals, circles, squares, triangles, simple letters (her name would be nice!), numbers 1-3. Gymnastics (handstand, flips…). Dancing, singing and making music.
The child is raised multilingually in English, German, Thai and Patois. Please state any skills you have in these languages. Please also state any experience you've had looking after babies this age and living communally with others as a flatmate.
Applicants with background in the African and Caribbean diasporas or Thailand, as well as applicants with lived experience in the LGBT, queer and trans of colour communities that make up the care collective (as described above) are preferred.
We usually live in Toronto (Canada) but are staying in Berlin until summer 2022. If you are planning to visit Toronto in the future we'd also love to hear from you!
You can google the following articles as a good basis for our discussion:
How to form a pandemic pod
COVID CARE: A way forward to opening up social circles
Community COVID pod agreements
Babysitting and creative play
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
You would experience being part of something bigger. Care collectives bring us closer to social justice: to a world where parents stay in community, where adults and children are in community with each other, where children have abundant access to people of many generations and experiences. They provide support and practise interdependence in a context where there is often a significant lack of support for parents (family not in the country, no partner etc.). And they let folks who may not otherwise have this opportunity experience and gain skills for hanging out with babies.
You would experience living in one of the amazing world cities out there. The place has all the culture, art and scenes you could wish for. Its social movements - from queer and trans politics to Black Lives Matter - are inspiring.
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
You would help out with the kid a maximum of 25 h a week. In addition, you would be expected to chip in with the chores independently and self-directedly as a leading member of the household.
THINGS FOR HELPERS TO KNOW
- Small kids & new parents are fragile creatures. Please respect our attempts at domestic hygiene and do what you can to stay healthy. Bring weather-appropriate clothes, especially in winter (it can get way below 0 degreed). Please wash your hands first thing when you walk in, before touching the baby.
- On any given date you might spend your time feeding the kid, playing with the kid while I'm cooking, stretching, bathing or getting some work or life admin done. You might take the kid to the park, or you might play with them at home while I'm running some errands outside.
- Do things that need doing (but be mindful of your own boundaries and capacity): If there is a stack of dirty dishes, load them into the dishwasher, if you're the last person up in the evening and you've had a late-night snack, wipe down the surfaces and take out the rubbish, if it’s lunch time, heat up food, if there’s laundry, take it downstairs, take out the recycling when you go out. The point is, just dig in and help out, don’t wait to be directed. I'll pay for food, rent and bills but you'll be expected to chip in with shopping, cooking and cleaning as an independently motivated helper and flatmate.
This host offers a language exchange
This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
You can contact them directly for more information.
We live in a large 2 bedroom apartment with a separate shared living room and kitchen at the centre of the City, walking distance to many great places to check out. The apartment is in a friendly old-school Berlin apartment building. You would have your own room with a large closet you can fill.
Allergy advice: I don't have pets and am a non-smoker. There's laminate in the living room, kitchen and entrance area, so no carpet (though it can get dusty from the street). We try to be scent free, so please don't bring any soap, hair or body products that have perfume or chemicals in them.
Close to the subway and buses that connect you instantly to the downtown. Lots of groceries and shops nearby. Walkable to cafes, libraries, community centres, public swimming pools and parks. Forests and lakes are within cycling distance.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
I have fast internet. I also work from home so will require use of the living room for my home office some of the time. You have your own large bedroom with a desk, and we can also work out times during which you can use the common areas for yourself.
5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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