Residents work for social cohesion in Kanaleneiland
‘Voor je Stadsie’ (‘For your Neighbourhood’) is a program that supports societal initiatives in the city. In South West Utrecht, ‘Voor je Stadsie’ has set up an action during the summer of 2020 to make the neighbourhood more beautiful, social, green and fun. During this action, the program ‘Voor je Stadsie’ supports inhabitants in collecting money, aid and/or materials in order to achieve their great ideas for the neighbourhood. ‘Voor je Stadsie’ offers personal guidance for executing (crowdfunding) activities.
Zorg van de Zaak has offered financial support for campaigning in order to achieve the idea.
Multiple initiatives have been proposed which give the neighbourhood a positive impulse in their own way. Aside from supporting the campaigning, Zorg van de Zaak Foundation has made a contribution to three initiatives.
BikeFlip is a circular bike company. The company offers a subscription for secondhand children’s bikes with an exchange and repair service: so it is a sustainable children’s bike subscription! Bikes from the depot in Utrecht get upcycled, which makes this initiative completely circular.
Through co-creation with parties such as de Fietsmeester, bike lessons are provided for people who are not able to get these themselves. After the biking course is finished, the students can get a subscription at BikeFlip for a decent price. In various areas in Utrecht, many people do not own a bike due to a lack of money, or simply because they don’t know how to cycle. Through this easily accessible initiative, owning a bike becomes more obtainable. And when the bike becomes too small, it can be exchanged for a larger one.
LunchMaatjes (‘Lunch buddies’) works towards providing affordable and healthy lunches for primary school pupils. The first pilot took place on Kindercampus Molenpark in Lombok. The concept is now being expended to included other neighbourhoods in Utrecht as well, including Kanaleneiland. The initiative is being guided by ‘Voor je Stadsie’ now, in order to become more self-sufficient by working out a revenue model.
Stad van Vrede (‘City of Peace’) is a foundation which works together with the inhabitants of Kanaleneiland to ensure interconnection and integration. Various initiatives have been set up by this foundation to achieve this interconnection and integration. These initiatives vary from handing out clothes to offering work and study places in the community centre Huis van Vrede (‘House of Peace), to giving Dutch lessons.
These, and similar initiatives supported by ‘Voor je Stadsie’ contribute to the goal of making South West Utrecht more beautiful, green and fun and to offer accessible services in culturally sensitive neighbourhoods.