The creation of the project CREATIVE MENTORSHIP is related to “Creative Society“, the project which was launched in the fall of 2011 by the Embassy of Sweden and the Museum of Science and Technology in Belgrade. In addition to the exhibition Women Inventors from Sweden and the educational program for children, the Monday Club was initiated, a place to exchange ideas between Serbia’s and Sweden’s creative minds. Throughout the duration of the project, every Monday one successful person from the field of culture, education and the creative industries from Sweden and one from Serbia were guests of the Museum and talked about entrepreneurship, personal development, creativity, innovation and life-long learning.
Helene Larsson Poussette, former cultural attache at the Embassy of Sweden in Belgrade enabled that the CREATIVE MENTORSHIP is initiated by creating ETC Group, consisting of 11 active and engaged individuals from Serbia in the sphere of culture and education, and establishing a platform for meeting various mentorship programs, supporting our first ideas, thoughts and our initiative. Members of the ETC group had the opportunity to meet and talk with guests from Sweden and exchange experiences with them. In direct contact with guests, members of the ETC group realized that each of the guests had in his/her career mentors – professionally successful and accomplished individuals to guide them through the turning points in their career and encourage their further development.
Enthusiastic about the idea of sharing the knowledge and experiences, which is in Serbia mostly limited to the academic community, the ETC Group, with the assistance of the Embassy of Sweden in Belgrade, decided to initiate the project “Creative Mentorship” – a pilot project which brings together and strengthens 50 selected individuals from the educational, culture and business sectors, and serves as a platform for testing and creating long-term mentoring program in Serbia.
In April 2012 members of the ETC Group have gone through the Personal Development Training program, as well as through an Introduction to the Mentoring Concept conducted by the Swedish organization Nätverkstan from Gothenburg. In May, the ETC group went on a study trip to Stockholm, organized by the Swedish Institute in order to get acquainted with the various initiatives and mentoring programs in the business sector, culture and higher education. Based on the experiences from Sweden the group designed a model that would best fit the context in Serbia.
The entire project was designed and launched thanks to the enthusiasm and voluntary work of the members of the ETC Group. As the need for the project development and its sustainability raised, in 2013 the project management was transferred to the local partner consisting of two members of the ETC Group, while many other members of the ETC group still actively contribute to various project activities.