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Stimulating higher education and personal development. Learning from each others experiences.
Start date: Jan 1, 2015, End date: Dec 31, 2015 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Both of the partners in this project have confidence in the value and dignity of every person, every country, every culture. By organizing an exchange program with Erasmus + Eastern Partnership country Azerbaijan situated in the Caucasus, the Switzerland of Russia, we believe in a positive contribution to active citizenship of young people. This ideal in this case is addressed by shaking the young people, between the sixth and thirteenth of April 2015, awake for the importance of education in their future. We believe that this is possible by showing young people the benefits of studying. Higher education gives them better chances to participate in the social political life, to have an own say in the society, to travel,... During this young phase in their life, we can show this by giving them the possibility to see how their peers are currently doing it or how older people already achieved it in another culture and country. Crucial in this case is the concept of personal development. We are convinced that this is an important condition for successful studying and then for active citizenship. We want to provide - through a process of intercultural and informal learning - knowledge, understanding and skills, notably to promote the personal development of the young people involved. The young people are the founding fathers of this exchange program and they determined together with the partners the objectives of this project. Furthermore, they helped with the concrete filling of the activities by determining together the day- to- day- program and formed working groups to do the preperations for the educational activities. The project is open to 54 participants in total, three supervisors per group. Seen the importance of gender balance, we seek to reach a balance in the number of female and male participants. The participants are young people between 16 and 25 years and come from families with low economic status and low educational level. It is envisaged that the young people at the end win confidence in self- presentation and can portray themselves in 5 to 10 years. The proposed activities intend to promote personal development because it is necessary for the will to continue studying, otherwise it is aimed to drive the international dimension of youth activities up by involving a foreign group. The exchange makes it possible that through the activities mutual knowledge exchange takes place. This will cause a change in perception with respect to higher education. The portrayal of themselves in 5 to 10 year is expected to be different within each country, but another dimension is the expectation that the endresult will also differ between the two cultures (European- Belgian- Turkish vs Caucasian- Azerbaijanian). In this way, the young people from both countries will become aware of their own situation and broaden their thinking with the help of experience with the other country. We try to show the young people the importance of higher education and the perspectives that higher studies offers. Concepts such as education, friendship, EU citizenship shall be reinforced in a non - formal learning.
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