Ana Garcia Martins – Portugal
Higher Education – Italy, 2002-03
‘For many young people, like myself, going on Erasmus meant leaving your home and family for the first time. It’s an incredible feeling of independence and liberation.’
For the writer of one of Portugal’s most popular blogs, Erasmus+ made her a ‘more complete’ person. To Ana, her time in Siena was one of the most important times in her life. A year later, she began the Vencedor Lifestyle blog of 2016, A Pipoca Mais Doce (The Sweetest Popcorn).
If it were up to Ana, she says every young person would take part in an Erasmus+ experience. For when she was in a new country, mastering the local language, she went on a journey to adulthood.
In addition to learning a new language and embracing new cultures, she had a chance to uphold key European values. ‘This experience sparks our curiosity and at the same time teaches us to be more tolerant towards other cultures,’ she added.
Today, Ana takes part in several solidarity initiatives, including raising funds for Lisbon’s main oncology wing and encourages her readers to mobilise in a ‘positive way’. She is also the author of 5 books, including 2 children’s books.