Erasmus+ Youth Exchange project by ESN Zagreb and ESN Lisboa

ESN Zagreb and ESN Lisboa in Lisbon, during the first part of the project in October of 2014


The project entitled "Twinning Up 4 Start Up!" took place in both Lisbon and Zagreb in it was divided into two parts. First part in Lisbon from 16th to 20th of October of 2014 and after that second part of the project followed in Zagreb from 17th to 21st of December of 2014.

We believe entrepreneurship, employability, mobility programs and European citizenship as themes of interest to young Europeans in general, and to ESN Zagreb and ESN Lisboa in particular. The youth exchange "Twinning Up 4 Start Up!" emerges as an opportunity to spread mobility programs serving these as tools in terms of employability for young Europeans and a wider field of action in intergenerational dialogue between Youth and European Twin Cities.

In this sense, the project relates to the sharing of knowledge between generations and local community participation.

The main objectives governing the project are to: enhance a multicultural atmosphere of social innovation; undertake the promotion of youth mobility within the European framework while in charge of the entrepreneurial initiatives; understand the common ground while tracing and merging the problems and solutions within the perspective of social entrepreneurship in the local community. We also included debates on people with few opportunities and how to better use the Erasmus+ in this specific framework.

We defined as an actor in social entrepreneurship, any subject who recognizes social problems and attempts to use entrepreneurial tools to solve them, maximizing social returns, rather than maximize profit as a priority. ESN Zagreb and ESN Lisboa intended to carry this theme for young people using non-formal education as the main vehicle

New ideas, different perspectives and inputs of operation, contributed to rethinking within the perspective of social entrepreneurship but with real applicability in providing best practice with the wider society.

All activities were based on methods of non-formal education, as they show themselves as an essential tool for learning in a European dimension. While occurring outside the formal educational curriculum, this type of learning initiatives, governed by non-formal education, are ideal complements to the young. Young people acquired essential skills and simultaneously contributed to their personal development, social integration and active citizenship, improving thus their employment prospects. Our goal was to add enthusiasm to the young, add more creativity, add more entrepreneurship and add greater visibility of mobility programs.

The project brought together youth/student associations linked to the issue of European mobility, with different European citizenship points of view. We combined in this project an effective and efficient response to all the permanent priorities of the Erasmus+ program and equally the need to fight against youth unemployment fostering also the participation of people with fewer opportunities.  In Zagreb official academic partner of this project was Zagreb School of Economics and Management with a special thanks to entrepreneurs who shared their experiences and values with us: Luka Abrus (Five), Ivan Topčić and Nino Malinarić (Tim Kabel), Filip Smerdelj (Drinkopoly), Morena Šimatić (Bellabeat) and Mrs. Lana Lučić for sharing with us her expertise in human resources.


Coordinators of the project:

For ESN Zagreb: Lea Ban, Martina Benzon

For ESN Lisboa: Sofia Vistas, Inês Cunha