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The REVERTER project energy ambassador training in Coimbra, Portugal

As winter tightens its grip, many families in Portugal find themselves in a precarious situation, struggling to heat their homes amidst soaring energy costs and limited incomes. With homes poorly insulated and inefficient, the challenge of keeping warm becomes even more daunting. However, amidst these difficulties, a beacon of hope emerges in the form of the REVERTER project, a commendable initiative aimed at providing practical and affordable solutions to alleviate energy poverty.


The REVERTER project energy ambassador training in Coimbra, Portugal

One individual who has answered this call to action is André Silva, a dedicated MSs student who has volunteered to become an Energy Ambassador for the REVERTER project. Recognizing the importance of improving the living conditions of vulnerable households, André eagerly took part in the project’s first training session, held online over two hours. Joined by five fellow volunteers, André immersed himself in learning how to make a tangible difference in the lives of those in need.

What sets the REVERTER project apart is its holistic approach. Not only does it enlist the support of volunteers, but it also collaborates closely with the Municipality of Coimbra, particularly the Social Housing Department. Facilitators from this department, with backgrounds in psychology and social service, play a crucial role in identifying and engaging vulnerable households. Their intimate knowledge of the local context and their existing relationships within these communities make them invaluable allies in the fight against energy poverty.

During the training session, the objectives and actions of the REVERTER project were outlined, laying the groundwork for the upcoming campaign of visits to residents. The collaboration between the Municipality of Coimbra and the enthusiastic volunteers was met with gratitude, underscoring the collective effort required to address this pressing issue.

A particularly heartening aspect of the training session was the swift identification of vulnerable households by the Municipality, demonstrating a proactive approach to reaching those most in need. Additionally, the implementation of a streamlined procedure for booking visits ensures that outreach efforts are efficient and effective.

Safety is paramount in the execution of the REVERTER project, and measures have been put in place to protect volunteers.

In André’s words (one of the energy ambassadors in Coimbra, Portugal):  “The REVERTER project is a good initiative aimed at helping families with. practical and affordable solutions. I decided to volunteer to take part because I believe that improving the condition of people’s homes is essential to reducing energy poverty in the country.”   

The REVERTER project energy ambassador training in Coimbra, Portugal

With individuals like André and the unwavering support of organizations like the Municipality of Coimbra, the REVERTER project is poised to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those affected by energy poverty in Portugal. The ambassadors provided One-Stop-Shop personnel with suggestions on topics they would like to further discuss in other training and meeting sessions.

The enthusiasm and optimism of our energy ambassadors reflect the spirit of the REVERTER project. Their eagerness to learn from experienced facilitators and his dedication to making a positive impact exemplify the power of community-driven initiatives.