Throughout the winter, Nijmegen Municipality will help residents, entrepreneurs and institutions experiencing financial problems due to the energy crisis. Until 31 March 2023, the city council will offer tailored solutions to mitigate the consequences of the energy crisis for those who run into problems as a result. Among other things, through an emergency fund for residents, opening of public buildings and expansion of the energy trainers and fixers who help with energy savings. The most important thing is that people and parties who get into trouble report themselves – for example to one of the founders, to a financial expert in the neighborhood or Ondernemerspunt Geldzorgen – so that they are helped as quickly and efficiently as possible.
The focus is on helping residents, entrepreneurs and institutions with money concerns and on saving energy.
Emergency fund for residents
There will be an emergency fund for residents who can no longer cope due to the high energy costs, despite the municipal and state regulations. This is for the winter period and applies to all residents. Also for residents who are now in trouble and are otherwise less dependent on help or asking for help. Residents are supported by adaptation from this emergency fund, based on basic principles. For example, a test of other solutions, of other facilities such as special assistance or attention to energy savings.
Emergency fund social institutions and associations
It is still unclear how the government supports social institutions and associations, but they are hard hit by the increased energy prices. The municipality is therefore setting up an emergency fund. These parties can appeal this provided they have tried everything to save and save where possible. There must also be social relevance and economic necessity. They may then be entitled to a one-off contribution from the emergency fund.
Development of energy meters, energy fixers and trainers
To help residents save energy, energy fixers have been active in three districts since the autumn. These fixers immediately introduce saving measures in the house. There are also energy coaches who give tips on how you can save energy easily and cheaply. Due to the energy crisis, the municipality wants to increase the number of fixers and trainers. Professionals who are in frequent contact with residents can also follow an e-learning on energy saving and extra people are deployed at the energy desk.
Stimulate initiatives by (aid) organizations in the neighbourhoods
Several organizations in the city are already collaborating to combat the consequences of the energy crisis. Think of the Food Bank, the House of Compassion, the Vincentius Association and animal welfare organizations such as the Animal Food Bank. They are eligible once, so they can offer even more help. Think about extra food packages, expanding energy advice and expanding meals or packages.
Opening and use of public buildings
Residents who are out in the cold at home due to energy costs can go to community centers and meeting places in the neighborhood. That way, they don’t have to heat up at home and here they can also meet each other. The idea is to offer neighborhood activities and coffee, tea or a soup here during normal opening hours. There is a tailored offer for each district or district, which is coordinated by the social directors and social partners such as Bindkracht10.
Intensify communication about money concerns and energy savings
In order to help residents, entrepreneurs and institutions as best as possible with their problems, it is important that they report as early as possible. Think of the Ondernemerspunt Geldzorgen for entrepreneurs and the stipples and financial experts in the neighborhood for residents. At the same time, it is important that everyone saves as much energy as possible, if possible. Communication about money concerns and energy savings is therefore intensified.
Investment and follow-up
The city council makes 5 million euros available to tackle the energy crisis in Nijmegen. The largest part of this is for the emergency fund for the social institutions and the emergency fund for the residents. Now that the board has made a decision, everything will be taken up as soon as possible by the municipal organization and partners, so that residents, entrepreneurs and institutions are well aware of all options and can act as soon as possible. Everyone is informed about this personally and via municipal channels or contact persons. In the meantime, residents of Nijmegen who are now getting into trouble can continue to report. For example, with a financial expert in the neighborhood. For entrepreneurs there is Ondernemerspunt Geldzorgen. For more information, see the Entrepreneur and money care page