Purpose of the project:
In 2013, a particular emphasis was placed on helping young people feel good in shopping centres. For many young people, shopping centres are important places where they spend time on an almost daily basis. This affects the daily work of shopping centre personnel, as some young people may question authority. We believe that a young person who feels good and appreciated also behaves well, which is why we wish to develop our interaction with young people.
Citycon entered into cooperation with the national youth service organisation Nuorten Palvelury in 2013, and this work will continue in 2014. Specific situations and potential problems facing individual shopping centres were reviewed in workshops. The objective of the campaign is to increase the tenants’ and service providers’ understanding of young people and youth in general, and to create harmonised, locally adapted procedures for each shopping centre’s security guards. This training introduced the participants to new ways of working with young people. The related methods help guards cope with their work, while keeping interaction civil and improving the overall atmosphere of shopping centers.
The results were monitored e.g. by the amount of complaints issued by the tenants about the disturbance caused by youngsters - the complaints reduced. And by the amount of warnings the security guards had to give to youngsters- complaints reduced. All in all the atmosphere of the selected shopping centres in this regard improved. This project brought us the 'shopping center act of the year' award in Finland.
“Young people are an important focus group in many ways; they’re just as much our customers as adults are. But we also want them to feel good at our shopping centres. At the same time, we want to make sure that everyday interaction between young people, guards, tenants and other customers goes smoothly. We’re not experts in youth work, which is why Nuorten Palvelury is a vital partner for us.”
- Marko Juhokas, Senior Vice President, Development and Sustainability