The search for creative solutions that provide access to sustainable and non-polluting energy is one of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. At Endesa and the entire Enel Group we have subscribed to this goal through a public commitment, which contributes to considerably improving the living conditions of disadvantaged people.
The ideas for finding these solutions can become a reality if they come through the right channel, and if they have the support of institutions that safeguard their development and a team of people with the necessary knowledge and commitment to implement them.
The programme “Social Innovation to Tackle Fuel Poverty”, created in 2015 by the NGO Ashoka and the Schneider Electric Foundation, complies with these premises, as it focuses on identifying and promoting social innovation projects that respond to the most urgent challenges regarding fuel poverty and sustainability across Europe. It also aims to reduce the existing economic barriers among the most vulnerable social groups, to ensure accessibility to technology and infrastructures, to promote energy efficiency and to educate people on the responsible and sustainable use of energy.
In the previous edition, the winning initiatives coming from the Czech Republic, Poland, Italy, Belgium, France and the United Kingdom, focused mainly on improving the visibility of fuel poverty and on educating people on the subject, as well as promoting a circular economy, energy saving, funding for electrical equipment and energy efficiency. Therefore, the winning projects discussed the construction of houses with organic materials, which allow for more energy to be saved as well as respecting the environment, and the conversion of waste materials into biofuels that provide energy at low cost.
This year saw the launch of the second edition of this programme, now with the global collaboration of the Enel Group and Endesa in Spain and Portugal. The 2017-18 edition of the initiative aims to identify, involve and support between 15 and 20 organizations that tackle fuel poverty in Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece and Germany, and which propose social initiatives with innovative solutions to help communities affected by this issue.
The competition for the presentation of projects for this edition is open from Monday the 12th of June until Sunday the 1st of October 2017. The initiatives selected to form part of the programme will receive twelve weeks of training equal to 300 hours of tuition, as well as the opportunity to participate in meetings and networking events within the European Social Entrepreneurship network, with the aim of developing an efficient strategy to increase the visibility of their projects.
Furthermore, the winners will be announced between the 13th and the 17th of November 2013, during the celebration of the 23rd COP23, The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, taking place in Bonn (Germany). In addition there will be a two day summit in April 2018 in Rome (Italy) for the presentation of the strategies used in their development.
Thanks to initiatives like this, good ideas can become great solutions in improving people’s lives. At Endesa and the entire Enel Group we want to support organizations and entrepreneurs who promote these projects so that they can become a reality.