On 2nd of February 2016, a group of 30 youngsters started their new learning adventure. For ten days (from 2nd to 11th of February), young aspiring entrepreneurs from Romania, Italy, Spain, Greece, Cyprus and Croatia gathered in Stefanesti, Arges, Romania, to take part in an Erasmus + Youth Exchange: an experience that empowered them with the tools and knowledge they need to boost their creativity in order to be successful.
Unexpectedly, the group seemed to take form right from the first night the participants met. Most of the countries being Mediterranean and sharing common values helped the group dynamic a lot, and so the theoretical objectives of the project were easier to achieve, because the team work was always close to flawless. Another aspect that contributed to engaging the participants was an earlier-than-expected trip in the area to discover Romanian traditional arts such as pottery and baking bread. Besides, the other activities, like archery, Tyrolean, admiring the picturesque scenery and learning about the secrets of pottery directly from the villagers helped the participants get creative and think about business opportunities inspired by the local area.
And this creative mood was maintained during the whole project: theoretical presentations of strategy innovation, types of innovation, tools to use when developing business ideas (such as mind-mapping, attribute listing) business models and business plans were nicely combined with challenging experiments and creative tasks, intercultural nights and games. Discovering the qualities of a successful entrepreneur and getting examples of flourishing businesses, they were inspired to think about their own ideas and analyze their opportunities, which can have a major impact on the direction their life is going in.
By the end of the exchange, the participants understood that the process of opening a business starts with self-knowledge, and it takes a lot of perseverance and courage to venture in this area, as well as creativity and skills.
The project was implemented by Impreuna Desenam Viitorul NGO from Romania, in partnership with Youth Mobility Center Greece, Udruga za mlade Maro i Baro Croatia, European Crossroads Spain, Connect Italy and One Terrene International Cyprus.