In a few days, all households will receive 190 euros as compensation for the increased energy costs. Energy suppliers must ensure that the amount reaches their customers. A further 190 euros will follow in December. Not everyone needs or even wants the money. Charities are already getting the amount donated.
The aid organization Kansfonds has set up a special campaign to which people can donate the compensation amount. And the donations keep coming already inside: “You can feel that this campaign really meets people’s needs,” says Regina Engels from Kansfonds.
The energy supplier Vandebron this week informed its customers about the energy compensation and suggested that they donate the money to Kansfonds, Fattigdomsfonden or the Food Bank. “We received 72,000 euros in a short time,” says Engels.
Most people donate 190 euros, the amount for the compensation. The Poverty Foundation and the Food Bank have also received “dozens of donations” of the compensation amount, or double: 380 euros. They don’t even ask for donations. The Poverty Foundation calls it “biased” to do so. The food bank expects people who want to donate to find their way to the local food bank.
Questions about donation
Vandebron decided to put the proposals in the customer email after several customers had asked if the energy supplier could transfer their compensation to another customer with a high bill. “Unfortunately, we cannot do that, and we felt the need to help the customers internally. Therefore, we have included three proposals in our email,” replies Vandebron.
Vattenfall also plans to mention the Chance Fund in its email to customers. The company also allows employees to donate their energy compensation internally through the Vattenfall Foundation.
Kansfonds makes the extra money available immediately through twenty partner organizations in its own network across the country in a special winter fund. “We have chosen organizations that Kansfonds knows that the money will end up with immediately. The first three hundred thousand have already been distributed. These are donations supplemented by money that we ourselves make available,” says Jansen.
One of those organizations is the walk-in center Meester Geertshuis in Deventer, where people who need urgent help receive a maintenance allowance. “We can do that for about six weeks, while structurally helping people out of poverty during those weeks,” says Marianne Kok, coordinator at Meester Geertshuis. Living allowance is given, for example, when a washing machine breaks down in a poor family with three children. “We don’t keep families waiting and help immediately. At the same time, we request special help or help with a budget coach, for example.”
Energy bank registrations are growing rapidly
Vattenfall also mentions the possibility for its customers to donate the money to the Energy Bank. According to the energy bank’s chairman, Barry Jansen, the local energy banks have received several hundred applications a week since the energy crisis.
The compensation is nice, but more public guidance is needed for a structural solution to energy poverty
The Energy Bank, which has been around since 2015, helps people structurally reduce energy costs by looking at where their homes can be insulated. The energy bank can also help you look for schemes and enter into a good energy contract.
“The grant is very nice. It’s just not a structural solution. It can all be much more targeted. There are really sufficient resources to make it more sustainable and become more energy efficient. Different municipalities are already doing a lot, but more guidance is needed from the government,” says Janssen.