When asylum seekers are finally allowed to leave the Asylum Seeker Center (AZC) and are allocated a home, they are often overjoyed. But then they face the next challenge: How are you going to furnish this house if you don’t have things at all and don’t know many people in the area?
For this there is a so-called furnishing budget for the owners of stature, but this is not always enough. A tour of Omroep Brabant shows that the amounts that holders of status receive to furnish their homes vary greatly by municipality. So it doesn’t really matter which municipality you end up in.
If you’re lucky, there is already a floor and curtains in the house, but the house can also be completely empty. To furnish an entire house from head to toe – from painting the floor and walls to the sofa and TV – you need a good amount of money.
In most municipalities, the amount is adjusted according to the size of the family. For example, one person receives less than a family with three children. Sometimes these amounts are fixed per person, and in other places the amounts depend on the specific situation.
In at least seven municipalities in Brabant, the furniture budget is a gift and holders of status do not have to repay the amount. In the municipalities of Alfen Sham, Giles-en-Rijn, Barley-Nassau and Oystervik you feel most comfortable. Room residents here receive a gift of 1847 euros and for an independent person this amount is 3531 euros.
In Alvin Sham, Gilsey-on-Region, and Barley-Nassau, the owners of the prestige also receive money to renovate the house. For example, they get 332 euros for the living room, kitchen and bathroom and another 134 euros for each additional bedroom.
Quantities are not high enough
Furniture budget is also a gift in Tilburg, Hilvarenbeek, Oestervik and Osterhut. In seventeen other municipalities, the amount is partly a gift and partly a loan. In practice, this means that an amount is deducted from the benefit for a certain period. After this period, the remaining amount will be waived.
In thirteen municipalities it comes to a loan and the amount must be paid in full. In terms of the design budget, it doesn’t matter which municipality you end up in as a status holder.
But whether it’s a gift or a loan, conversations with various residence holders and staff at Refugee Work Helmond show that these amounts are often not high enough.
For example, we spoke with the owner of the new stature, Muhammad Khalil from Syria. He just got the key to his house in Helmond. “I don’t know yet if I’ll make that amount, but I hope I can get a lot of used stuff and luckily I have it on hand.”
The main differences between the furnishing budget for beneficiaries in the Brabant municipalities are presented below:
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