What are the International Erasmus Games?
The International Erasmus games (IEG) are a pan European health and wellbeing initiative of the Erasmus Student Network (ESN). We unite exchange student from all over Europe in an effort to promote sports as a universal language which is understood by everyone. Our efforts break all the barriers which separate the local and international communities of Europe and bring together people from all backgrounds, nationalities and age groups under the motto of healthy competition. Our volunteers organise and take part in sports competitions, running challenges, nutritional workshops and campaigns to promote a healthy lifestyle and the prevention of obesity, alcohol and drug abuse.
What are we guided by?
As an initiative of the Erasmus Student Network, we are always guided by our Vision, Mission and Values.
Enrichment of society through international students
ESN is the key volunteer student organisation in international higher education in Europe. We provide opportunities for cultural understanding and self-development under the principle of SHS - Students Helping Students.
The values of Erasmus Student Network that all members stand and work for are: unity in diversity, diversity in the unity (we all have different backgrounds, but share one common aim and goal), students helping students (we passionately commit ourselves to volunteering for the benefits of others), fun in friendship and respect (we enjoy relations based on respect), international dimension of the life (we are open-minded, mobile, like to discover and explore, to co-operate and to interact to break borders), love for Europe as an area of peace and cultural exchange (we live and benefit from the cultural richness of Europe to the utmost), openness with tolerance (we understand and accept others and learn from them), cooperation in the integration (we share a holistic view towards internationality).
How are we achieving our goals?
Our contribution focuses on implementing, promoting and organizing opportunities where our students and volunteers can engage in physical activity and education on the benefits of an active lifestyle, thus be healthy and well. But sport can also help to build team spirit and strengthen our ties with the communities that surround us. That is why we invest a lot in this cause and are involved in all levels of ESN with our community of local and national coordinators and our international team. Lastly, we are not alone in this battle as the EU strongly supports sports activities that bring people together and create new opportunities to integrate those from underprivileged or marginalized groups in society.
In 2014, the national branches of ESN in Italy and Poland realised that they were both organising a yearly sports tournament for exchange students in their countries. In the spirit of friendly competition and to unite exchange students from all over Europe, they decided to launch a new initiative, the International Erasmus Games (IEG). The initiative has taken off and has a bright future ahead. The first edition in 2015 was held in Cracow, Poland. In 2016 the IEG took place in Milan, Italy, before moving to Porto, Portugal, in 2017. In 2018 the finalists met in Niš, Serbia. This year, the fifth edition of the IEG is taking us to the French capital, Paris.
We are a part of the vast network of volunteers of the Erasmus Student Network which consist of 500+ local sections, spans over 40 countries and involves more than 12 000 volunteers. Our local and national coordinators are led by the International team elected to a one year mandate to the positions of Project Coordinator, Community Manager and Communications Officer.
Over the last few years, we managed to involve more than a thousand participants to our international events and our future goal is also to map out the numbers of participants joining our local and national initiatives. These numbers for sure will show the true scale of our activities and help us map out the impact we had across Europe.
The IEG is an initiative that has a special place in ESN’s hearth. Seeing people from all over the world defending the colours of their host country with passion and emotion is a great source of inspiration to the many ESN volunteers who work hard every year to organise this tournament. This is why the community will work hard together with the rest of the Network to involve more students and stakeholders every year so our message is heard loud and clear all over Europe.