The Voorschoten Energy Promise (De Energiebelofte van Voorschoten) is a climate-focused project aimed at helping Voorschoten achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 as part of the broader goal across the Netherlands. It is the first climate-orientated municipality-school project in the Netherlands, involving the Municipality of Voorschoten and a group of four enthusiastic students from the BSN. Nicole (project manager), Ahnaf and George (researchers), Niklas (content creator), and Jolundi Wilson (the Project Supervisor and International Baccalaureate (IB) Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) Coordinator at the BSN) are delighted to work with The Alignment House (a consultancy firm based in Oudewater) to help bring this project to life.
The Voorschoten Energy Promise focuses on the Energy Transition, seeking to inform Voorschoten’s residents about what community businesses and organisations are doing to work towards carbon neutrality. We are currently creating a digital almanac which will be accessible to all the residents of Voorschoten once complete. The almanac will include profiles of various businesses located in Voorschoten. We hope to also create profiles on residents playing a role in the Energy Transition (for example, by adding solar panels or improving insulation in their homes). By gathering community initiatives into the almanac, we want to inspire others to get involved in the Energy Transition and learn about their role in helping Voorschoten become carbon neutral by 2050.
The benefits of investing in the Energy Transition are numerous: from reducing our contribution to climate change – the devastating effects of which we are experiencing – to reducing our energy bills, which is crucial considering the rising energy prices. We aspire to work with the residents of Voorschoten to provide ideas about the various ways in which everyone can help by getting involved. Everyone has different stories, priorities, and abilities, so we are keen to inform and encourage people to get involved in multiple ways. For example, you could install LED light bulbs, get an electric vehicle, use public transport more often, invest in solar panels and more; there are many options, and everyone can participate.
To gather information for creating more profiles, we are organising two small events involving the residents of Voorschoten over the next few weeks. Our first event is scheduled for 30 September. It will take place at the Voorschotense Herensociëteit starting at 20:00. We will discuss practical ways in which everyone can play their parts and gather more information on what people are already doing in terms of the Energy Transition. We are also planning a second event in the first weeks of October, located at the Forescate Hockey Club.
Once we have gathered enough information and created all the profiles, we aim to host a launch event at the BSN before the end of this year. We are also exploring the possibility of growing a social media presence after the almanac’s completion. We want to connect to a wider audience and play a more prominent role in reaching a more sustainable future by raising awareness and encouraging people to make positive changes to minimise our environmental impact.
The urgent change we need will only come when we all work together. Hence, we hope to see everyone come together and take part in transitioning to a more sustainable future!
It is our responsibility to leave a green, healthy, and habitable planet for our future generations.
Ahnaf is an A Level student and the Student Leader for Charities and Events at the Senior School Voorschoten. He is also a member of the Eco Team and a researcher for the Voorschoten Energy Promise project.
Follow the SSV Student Leaders on Instagram: @ssvstudentleaders
Follow CAS on Twitter: @BSNCAS