Porto its a city that changed a lot through the last 5 years. For who went abroad for a couple of years and came back now, it is visible that the city is completely different than what was 7 years ago.
You will think that it happens the same everywhere, but in fact this city suffered changes that nobody though it would be possible:
-Tourism grew exponentially and made Porto an european reference for hollidays;
- The city center transformed itself with thousands of new shops, restaurants and Pubs;
- The institutions embraced every partnership that brings new activities to the city.
Erasmus Life Porto, was created by a "League" of institutions who aimed to changed the system and bring the diversity that was so difficult to settle in Porto. This "League" of people, institutions or even interest, fighted the fear, and the pressure that it was to start the ELP from scratch. There was a lot of resistance to it. It started 2 years ago, with a very nice meeting, that brought a lot of people together, and where everyone had the same intention: to make more and better. This was the main purpose. They abolished the financial interest, and each part sacrificed their free time to make whatever they could do to make it a little better.
As an observer, I ve seen Erasmus Life Porto growing and the difference was definitely visible. Since ELP showed up, there were a lot of different organizations organizing new activities for Erasmus Students with a different vibe. Language Tandems, Erasmus Meetings, an Open Space Office for the students to arrive, spend time together, use free internet, to just sit and talk with people. Parties, started to have the Famous Beer Pong Competitions, live Jam Sessions, free Surf Lessons, and many others.
The prize of waiting 2 years and get to have activities organized with institutions who came to us and told us " well, we went to another institution but they told us that they dont make partnerships with people who cooperate with ELP, but we saw your programme and we do prefer to cooperate with you". Of course they prefer it. ELP does, more and much better.