Published on November 11th, 2018

“AEGEE-Bologna is enrolled in the List of Free Associations of the Municipality of Bologna since December 2015. But it’s been two years since we deeply start cooperating with a special section of the Municipality of Bologna, called Informagiovani Multitasking that is totally dedicated to young people. It offers them the possibility to study or work abroad, advices about European projects, crowdfunding, young business and so on. That’s why Informagiovani follows a peer to peer strategy, and it involves university students but also associations as AEGEE or Scambieuropei. They aim to encourage young people to the mobility and to be in touch with foreigners such as Erasmus students or refugees.

Informagiovani asked us to organize occasional activities as the “Ceremony of the Exchanges”. It takes place in October and in that occasion we organize a buffet for high school students and we present AEGEE and how it can lead young people to try cultural exchanges.

But the main project is called “TimeToTandem”. Basically, it takes place every year from February to May during 10 meetings. It is completely free, and it gives young people the chance to practice the language that they want to improve. As AEGEE-Bologna we receive money to organize activities. We take care of the PR strategy, we find the people, we contact them, we form the couples according to the languages they want to practice and then we prepare the activity itself. We try to make the meetings funny with team building games or presenting them the Summer University Project with videos and photos. Sometimes we like bringing unusual things as a real tandem and take them for a ride in the square, but we also try to defeat the fear of the public speaking, and the diffidence that they usually have.

Every meeting has a different topic, according to the organizer’s creativity: books, travels, cinema, environment. The most successful one is without any doubts the external one that we organize in a hostel kitchen: the participants are in pairs and each one has to cook the other’s traditional receipt. At the end we eat all together and every time it is nice to see how horrible pasta can become if it falls into the wrong hands.”