The idea about forming the association (organization) that will allow the youth to deal with the problems they encounter, dates from year 2000. when the small group of young people (future founders) discussed about the absence of any kind of programmes or initiatives for youth throughout the entire Lepoglava region. The arising idea referred on organizing the youth and the need for youth to be actively engaged in activities and the life of community. For the whole year, the idea was resting and maturing, and in May 2001. the first steps were taken towards the realization of the idea. It started with drafting the statute following the examples of statutes of other similar organizations in Croatia, and with the cautious testing the public and interest of youth for such an endeavour.

Considering that great number of young people enthusiastically embraced the idea about existence of such an association, a few talented and ambitious young people started difficult procedure of establishing the association and its registration. Through the process of preparing and establishing the association, contacts have been made with great number of young people and the most interested ones were actively included in the project.

Finally, on May 25th, 2002. on the Inaugural meeting in Lepoglava, Independent Youth Association was founded. There has been 17 founding members, all young people with residence in Lepoglava region. With the last day of that year, the association had 144 members and prepared and implemented several successful projects.

Independent Youth Association was envisioned to be the association of young people from entire Lepoglava region (Ivanec, Lepoglava, Klenovnik, Bednja, Donja Voća I Maruševec). Without any strict goals, the idea of Independent Youth Organization was to gather as many as possible young people and enable them to actively participate in the life of local community.  In that process the Association should serve as communication channel between young people with ideas and will to achieve them, and local authorities and companies that have resources and possibilities to materialize that ideas.

Currently the Association has over 200 members from wider Lepoglava area, and has implemented over 200 actions, event and projects in Lepoglava and wider area. Beside in Lepoglava region, the Association cooperates with other similar associations and organizations in Croatia. Projects of this Association are referring to all aspects of social life, from education, informing and sport to ecology, concerts and exhibitions.

Independent Youth Association is one of the founders of Croatian Youth Network, an umbrella association for youth in Croatia that currently has over 50 youth associations and organizations from entire country. In its previous work, the association cooperated with well-known donors and educators like Care International, AED, National Foundation for Civil Society Development, Smart, Suncokret, Agency for Mobility and EU Programmes, Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Science and Education, Ministry of Demography, Family, Youth and Social Policy, Holcim Croatia, HT-Croatian Telecom, ZABA bank (Zagrebačka banka) and many other organizations and companies.

From the beginning the Association is active on the field of designing and implementing different projects funded by local and regional government, national funds, different ministries, foundations and EU funds. More information about successfully implemented projects you can find in section Projects. Besides projects, the Association is organizing various activities and events (sports, informal education, quiz, festival, workshops) of which the most famous is Jailhouse festival. The festival is organized every year in August, continuously from year 2010. It provides a handful of entertainment and sporting events, education and workshops for children and youth, enriches the social life of community and encourages young people in active participation in community.

If we managed to interest You in joining, contact us. Together with other members, activists and volunteers you can make a difference and be important member of society you live in.