It's been an eventful week in Barcelona for Housing Europe. Let us take you through the highlights of it.
The second Board meeting of the year on April 23rd was followed by the first-ever Housing Europe leaders' summit on Tuesday, April 24th. The event that was hosted at the Maritime Museum in Barcelona marked an important day on the occasion of the 30-year anniversary of the European Federation. The heads of public, cooperative and social housing providers got together for the first time in a much needed- as everyone acknowledged- opportunity to share ideas and solutions for the common challenges our sector is and will be facing in the future.
The debate unfolded around 6 main pillars:
- increasing social support for residents
- communicating positively on social and economic impact
- managing trends of consolidation and mergers
- leading the sector and changing housing dynamics
- embracing technology to reduce costs of delivery and
- navigating the increase in the use of private finance and PPPs.
The event was an open debate inviting all participants to engage and share their thoughts either orally or on the large sheets that were available on the walls. The Secretariat has gathered all the information, comments, ideas and suggestions and is working on thorough follow up. Stay tuned for a detailed report including all presentations delivered throughout the day.
The day after kicked off with a site visit to a development by the Municipal Institute for Housing and Renovation of Barcelona as a warm-up for the conference on the 'Renovation policies in Southern Europe' that was hosted by the Housing Europe Spanish member, AVS along with the municipality of Barcelona, Registrars of Spain and the Association of the Catalan social housing managers (GHS) host, with the support of Housing Europe. The event brought together best practices in terms of funding for housing renovation and to discuss scalability potentials and transferability across borders. Housing Europe President, Cédric Van Styvendael addressed the conference, highlighting that 1 in 10 Europeans have difficulty to heat their homes, explaining why energy efficiency is a key topic for all Europeans while stressing that renovation strategies should leave anyone behind across Europe.
The Housing Europe visit to the Catalan capital concluded with an important milestone. Few European city leaders are as committed to the right to housing as Ada Colau who welcomed the President of Housing Europe in the city hall of Barcelona, joining forces for affordable housing for all. The Mayor of Barcelona is now set to attend the International Social Housing Festival 2019 in Lyon.