Background to the programme
ALECOB has found that energy is not a priority for young people when choosing a house and that it is a criteria that rarely comes into account in the final decision. However, the cost of energy occupies a growing place in the budgets of people on low incomes (who are the public targeted by ALECOB). In order to avoid an increase in unpaid bills which weren't properly planned for, it seemed important to educate these young people on the question of energy during a visit or when moving into a house.
Objectives of the programme
-Targeted public: young people with the intention to live alone.
-Inform young tenants on the use of energy in their homes and energy saving behaviour
-Prevent situations of energy poverty from arising by giving them the tools to manage their energy from the moment of the first move to independent living, so that good habits are in place from the beginning.
-Establish and visualise their budget and their needs.
The guide was written in collaboration with young people involved in "Preparing Your Appearance at Work", as part of a year long monitoring program on self-confidence and image which had several contributors. They were tasked with reading the document as it was being drafted and to share their observations to improve it and to better adapt it to the target audience.
This booklet provides answers to several issues related to energy when people begin living in their first home:
-How to choose an efficient house? What are the important issues and what are the technical characteristics linked to energy which need to be 'inspected'?
-What steps to take towards water and energy suppliers?
-How to track my consumption, maintain the appliances and reduce my energy bill?
Delivery of the guide by advisors of the Local Project during the first steps towards finding accommodation or by ALECOB during visits to the Energy Info Space.
Quantitative and qualitative results from the implemented actions
-3000 guides distributed by all the organisations who requested it: CDA, CCAS, social workers, charities, Claj de carhaix, Ulamir de l’aulnes, estate agents, notaries, Tourist Office...
Energy is an element that is only very rarely taken into account in the choice of housing, particularly by young people. A guide that enables them to learn about this theme, is an innovative approach. In addition, this guide has been prepared through participation: in order to improve the impact of the guide as well as its use by the public for whom it is intended, it has been conceived by consulting a group of young people in "Preparing Your Appearance at Work". They are the ones who shared their needs and expectations for this kind of document, and they also participated in its production.
Partnership(s) developed in the context of the programme
General Council of Côtes d'Armor, General Council of Finistère, General Council of Morbihan
Local Project of Central West Brittany
Don Bosco Foundation
Difficulties and/or obstacles encountered during the programme’s implementation :
-Evaluation of the real impacts of the guide on the energy usage of young people and their choice of accommodation: it is difficult to monitor the real effectiveness of this guide in the lives of young people after its distribution.
Solutions used to overcome the difficulties and/or obstacles :
-With their agreement, to speak with people to whom the guide has been distributed by a CESF (Social and Family Economy Advisor) of the local project, to conduct interviews retrospectively and evaluate their use of the guide. Difficult to implement, few results could be taken.
Suggestions for future improvement :
-Broaden the scope of distribution in Brittany, but partnerships must be found with cROUS, for example, who are not present on the COB and also funds must be found for reprinting. There were many requests to organisations in Brittany to have new copies of the guide.
Summary of factors responsible for the programme’s success :
-Participatory approach: taking account of young people's ideas, participation in the production of the guide
-Partnership between the project manager of ALE and the CESF of the local project.
-The distribution partners have done well and have distributed the document well.