The history of the Erasmus organization in Sofia starts in 2006/2007 when two students from the University of Sofia decide to help the local Erasmus, but not as any kind of organization, but just as their friends. The things get a bit more serious when Mariya Dineva, Georgi (a.k.a Horhe) Filipov and Kristina Toncheva take over in February 2008.
After a meeting with about 10 more students, an agenda for the whole semester is prepared and Sofia appears on the Erasmus map of Europe as a city that has a lot of amusements to offer.
Since all of the founders had already been on exchange where they had had the chance to get to know ESN, they were all convinced that Bulgaria should join as well. ESN Sofia University was approved as a candidate section by CNR Rimini and in December 2008 CND Gdansk turned it into a full member of ESN. Mariya Dineva was elected as the 1st NR of the country. The second section applied right after – ESN NBU (New Bulgarian University, Sofia) obtained the candidate section status in February 2009 at the CNR Skopje, in May 2009 it became the 2nd official Bulgarian section at the CNR in Porto.
National platform was established as legally based NGO and nowadays it takes place at least 3 times per year in different cities. With ESN Varna on board (after the Bulgarian NP in February 2010), ESN Bulgaria could officially constitute its first board – Kristina Toncheva (president), Horhe (Gueorgui) Filipov (vice-president, internal relations), Mariya Dineva (vice-president, external relations), Anastasia Ignatova (treasurer), Iva Karaivanova (secretary).
The next applicant section came in 2010 from Veliko Tarnovo - our 4th section. Аnd right after it another one from Sofia - ESN UNWE was accepted in the beginning of 2011. Several sections appeared after: ESN AUBG in Blagoevgrad, ESN UACEG in Sofia, ESN Ruse in Ruse, ESN UTCM in Sofia and ESN Plovdiv in Plovdiv. Currently we have 10 sections in 6 cities in the country. Their members organize different kind of typical social activities on local and national level for exchange students as parties, trips, international dinners, games etc., they actively participate in international ESN events and projects.
ESN Bulgaria is proud with its international events organized. We organized the 1st ever summer school of ESN in 2009 – Bulgaria Education Summer Training a.k.a. BEST. It was a great motivation for the participants and for the organizers as well! The event turned into the big kick-off of ESN Bulgaria and brought international fame to our country!!! After this success ESN Bulgaria continues its “best” tradition organizing also BEST 2 in August 2010 in Blagoevgrad and BEST 3 in September 2013 in Gabrovo, awarded by the NA with a plaque and a certificate for a professional organisation, as well as BEST 4 in September 2014.
Apart from that, the South Eastern European Platform took place in Veliko Tarnovo in November 2010, as well as Council of National Representatives in Sofia in between January and February 2014. The latter one, Because of the immaculate job of everybody involved in the organization and the one-of-a-kind social program, the event won ESN Star Award at the official ceremony in AGM Milano in April 2014.
Excessive activism is observed in Bulgaria and there is nothing that can stop us. Now we work on the organization of the Council of National Delegates which will take place in Plovdiv in December 2015.
Meanwhile ESN Bulgaria doesn’t stop to gain friends and partners as institutions, other NGOs, becoming more and more famous as a student organisation. Starting with around 10 students taking care of 30 students in 2008 and preparing the documents in order to join the big ESN family now in 2015 the Bulgarian network has its 10 sections, a National platform legally based as NGO, a national board of 5 persons and 6 board supporting positions, many partners and the self-confidence after experiencing the organisation of several international events.
What is important to know about us?! Hmm… one simple thing – we are the best! BEST turned into our trademark and we will keep on proving that we really are.
We are writing the history now. Still a lot of great moments to come!!!
- 2006 – It all began with two students from the University of Sofia, who decided to help the local Erasmus as their friends, not as any kind of organisation;
- February 2008 – Mariya Dineva, Georgi Filipov and Kristina Toncheva take the first actions in joining Bulgaria to the Erasmus family;
- At CNR Rimini, ESN Sofia University – Candidate section was officially constituted;
- December, 2008 – ESN Sofia University – Candidate Section became a full member of ESN International at CND Gdansk with Mariya Dineva selected as the first National Representative of the country;
- February 2009 – at the CNR Skopje, the second section ESN NBU (New Bulgarian University, Sofia), obtained a candidate section status;
- May 2009 – ESN NBU became the second official Bulgarian Section at the CNR Porto;
- Summer, 2009 – the 1st ever summer school of ESN was organized – Bulgarian Education Summer Training, a.k.a. BEST;
- February 2010 – ESN Varna was accepted after the first Bulgarian National Platform. ESN Bulgaria could officially constitute its first board 2009/2010 - Kristina Toncheva (president), Horhe (Gueorgui) Filipov (vice-president, internal relations), Mariya Dineva (vice-president, external relations), Anastasia Ignatova (treasurer), Iva Karaivanova (secretary);
- 2010 – ESN Veliko Tarnovo became the fourth section of ESN Bulgaria;
- August 2010 – BEST happened for the second time – now in Blagoevgrad – a picturesque city in the southwest of Bulgaria;
- September 2010 – on the NP in Sofia, ESN Bulgaria elected the National Board 2010/2011 - Kristina Toncheva – President; Mariya Dineva – National Representative, Georgi Filipov – Vice President Internal Affairs, Aleksandar Yosifov – Treasurer, Anastasia Ignatova – Secretary
- November 2010 – the first and by far the last ESN regional platform in Bulgaria - SEEP was organized in the historical town of Veliko Tarnovo;
- February 2011 – ESN UNWE was accepted in the beginning of the year, extending the number of the local Bulgarian sections to five;
- September 2011 – National Board 2011/2012 was elected by the General Assembly – Ioana Bratoeva – President; Lora Zasheva – National Representative, Liliya Atanasova – Treasurer, Nadezhda Angelova – Vice President Internal Affairs, Zvezdomir Tsvyatkov – Secretary;
- 2012-2013 – several sections appeared during the next two, with the establishment of ESN AUBG in Blagoevgrad, ESN UACEG in Sofia and ESN Ruse in Ruse;
- September 2012 – the National Platform in Sofia in September saw the election of National Board 2012/2013 - Iordan Rachev – President, Lora Zasheva – National Representative, Teodora Ivanova – Vice President Internal Affairs, Gabriela Bahchevanova – Secretary, Denislav Atanasov – Treasurer;
- September 2013 – continuing with the tradition, after a 3-year pause, the third Bulgarian Education Summer Training happened in Gabrovo, in the mountain region of Uzana;
- September 2013 – at the last NP for the year in Sofia, National Board 2013/2014 was elected - Dessislava Kovacheva – President, Denislav Atanasov – National Representative, Lora Zasheva – Vice-National Representative, Darena Milkova – Vice President, Sophia Kiryakova – W.E.P., Nora Tineva – Treasurer, Nadezhda Angelova – Secretary. Bulgaria now has 7 official National Board members.
- February 2014 – ESN Bulgaria organized CNR Sofia, which later at AGM Milano 2014 won the award for the best event of the year;
- July 2014 – a new section became part of ESN Bulgaria in the face of ESN UTCM Sofia at the Summer National Platform in Varna.
- September 2014 – the fourth and the latest BEST took place in the forests of Uzana, Gabrovo, for a second consecutive time.
- September 2014 – the latest board of ESN Bulgaria – National Board 2014/2015 was constituted by the GA - Stela Glushkova – President; Darena Milkova – National Representative, Gergana Kocheva – Vice President, Sophia Kiryakova – W.E.P., Eli Draganova – Treasurer, Ana Dimitrova – Partnership Manager, Kaloyan Dimitrov – Secretary;
- November 2014 – on the last NP of ESN Bulgaria for 2014, that happened together with the National Training Event, the section count rounded up to ten, with the acceptance of ESN Plovdiv for a full member of ESN family.
- September 2015 - the latest board of ESN Bulgaria has been chosen on the National platform of ESN Bulgaria in Veliko Tarnovo. Its members are: Stela Glushkova - President; Kaloyan Dimitrov - Vice president; Gergana Kocheva - National representative; Eli Draganova - Treasurer; Melis Idrizova - Secretary. The National boards includes some board supporting positions, too. They are: Eli Nacheva - WPA; Elizabeth Kamenova - Partnership manager; Vyara Tomova - SocialErasmus coordinator; Melis Idrizova - Vice NR; Dimitar Savov - Education officer; Dessislava Kovacheva - Communication manager