The IEG Porto 2017 were the third edition of the event with over 150 participants from all over Europe. The international students representing their host countries spent three sunny days strolling through the beautiful city, competing in four different sports and even enjoying the beach after the competition. The big winners were ESN Italy who won the Men’s Basketball and Futsal. ESN Portugal, the host team won the Women’s Basketball competition and the ESN Czech Republic won the Volleyball competition.
There we were, end of March, frenetic to receive everyone in our city as best as we possibly could have imagined. At this stage, we already notice the importance of organising such an event that promotes so many good things to the students we represent – international students. It was through the event that we got in touch for the first time with the Municipal Hall, the national sports agency and so many other amazing institutions that saw the potential of this event. Not far from the institutional level, the event allowed the volunteers to develop themselves with different skill-sets. Of course, the development of skills was an important step for the gratification of volunteers that faced eight months of work towards the event.
The moment is here…participants are already flying in and the enthusiasm grows fast within the team! The opening ceremony is underway and it’s the official beginning of the IEG Porto! The participants are now ready to get to know Porto and to experience the city life through the eyes of a local. It’s not enough, a flag parade follows to show the city that we are here, as ONE – The Erasmus generation.
Not everything goes according to plan but the vibe is just about perfect. The participants created the best possible environment for the organising committee to be even able to even participate in the event. We just follow it with a cultural activity that involved Portuguese music and the best of Portuguese food – Portuguese Night. That could be all but ESN is not only fun and sports. The nature of the event also allows us to explore other areas of involvement with the local community, especially young people. We invited high school students to spend an afternoon to interact with Erasmus students from 31 different countries – Erasmus in Schools, our favourite project. The tournament is over and we are ready to rest. Then, we were surprised by the overwhelming thankfulness of the participants towards our team. “Thank you”, “What an amazing job…” echoes through the ears of the volunteers. What they didn’t know was that IEG was almost carried out by the participants themselves...
It was by far one of the best events we had the pleasure to organise! You don't believe me? See it for yourself!
- Pedro Santos, OC of the IEG Porto 2017