The EU has outlined a multitude of policies around education, training, youth and sport for the 2021-2027 budget period. Chief among these are the European Education Area, Digital Education Action Plan, the EU Youth Strategy and the EU Work Plan for Sport. Their shared objective is to effectively and swiftly prepare European citizens for the twin green and digital transitions while ensuring that no one is left behind. All of these policies have their own standalone initiatives to advance their goals, but the overarching EU programme that will progress many of their cross-sectoral priorities is Erasmus+.
Erasmus+ is the EU’s programme to support education, training, youth and sport for 2021-2027. Its main objectives are to provide support for lifelong learning, contribute to building a European Education Area, and promote learning mobility in education, training, youth, and sport. Through advancing these objectives, Erasmus+ aims to improve the quality of education and training systems, foster greater social cohesion and strengthen European identity and active citizenship.
The programme’s four key priorities for 2021-2027 are:
Its budget of €26.2 billion will fund projects for civil society organisations working in the fields of adult education, higher education, school education, vocational education and training, youth work and sport. In Ireland, Léargas and the Higher Education Authority (HEA) are the national agencies for Erasmus+. The HEA manages the higher education strand while Léargas manages the adult education, school education, vocational education and training and youth strands. The Erasmus+ Sport strand is managed centrally in Brussels.
In addition to the various sectoral strands, Erasmus+ funding is also categorised by its three Key Actions. Each Key Action supports specific types of projects which in turn have their own target audiences and deadlines.
This Key Action provides funding for learners, students, teachers, trainers and young people to travel to different EU countries to train, learn, study and/or exchange best practices with a host organisation. Types of projects supported include:
This Key Action provides funding for organisations to engage in collaborative projects with partners in Europe in order to exchange ideas and produce tangible results or tools. Types of projects supported include:
Partnerships for Cooperation
Partnerships for Excellence
Partnerships for Innovation
Alliances for Innovation
Capacity Building in the Field of Youth
Not-for-profit European Sport Events
This Key Action provides support to policy cooperation at EU level and contributes to the development of new policies in the fields of education, training, youth, and sport. Types of projects supported include:
Civil society organisations can access all of these funding opportunities through calls for proposal throughout the 2021-2027 budget period. These calls are posted on the dedicated Erasmus+ application platform. Erasmus+ Sport calls (excluding Sport Mobility calls), various Key Action 2 calls, and the Key Action 3 European Youth Together calls are published on the European Commission’s Funding and Tenders Portal.
You can find more information on the Erasmus+ programme and the specific types of projects it funds by reading the Programme Guide 2023 or by visiting the Léargas and Higher Education Authority EURIreland websites.
Decisions that are made at the EU level can have a big impact on our daily lives. At The Wheel, we believe that citizens’ active participation in society is vital so they can play a part in influencing the decisions that affect them.
Here’s how you can connect with the EU:
Together.eu is an online community of pan-European active citizens interested in learning from each other and finding common ground on EU issues. Created by the European Parliament during the 2019 European elections, together.eu encourages everybody to participate in democracy through virtual events and activities.
In the lead-up to May 2019, volunteers helped raise awareness about the issues that matter most to them, their friends and families. From climate change to data protection, thousands of EU citizens throughout Europe organised activities, events and debates to remind others that participation in pan-European platforms is essential to dealing with today's challenges.
Check out the latest events organised by the European Parliament and the together.eu community, happening online and across Europe, by joining together.eu here.
Following the European elections in May 2019, 11 MEPs representing Ireland's three constituencies, Dublin, South and Midlands-North-West, took their seats in the European Parliament on 2 July 2019 for Parliament's 9th term.
With the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union on 31 January 2020, Ireland gained an additional two MEPs. Barry Andrews (Fianna Fáil/ Renew Europe), Dublin, and Deirdre Clune (Fine Gael/ EPP), South, took up their seats in the European Parliament on 1 February 2020.
Who are your MEPs and how can you contact them? We have gathered the information for you here.
Through involvement in EU-funded projects, you’ll deliver on current EU policy and programme goals while helping to shape future policy.
Learn more about the various EU funding programmes and the projects they support here.