Story by: Roxane Soudagar, Intern Amsterdam
"I don't know what the next three months will bring, but I hope that I will leave with as much drive and positivity that my colleagues and newcomers have."
Three months ago, I started my internship at NewBees, not quite knowing what to expect. I liked the idea of helping newcomers build on their own strengths to participate in society, but I had no idea just how inspiring it would be, time and time again, to see the motivation and enthusiasm so many newcomers have. In this short time period, I have personally seen people become more confident, improve their language, and move from having little to no work experience in the Netherlands at all, to doing full-time internships, volunteering in two different places, or even finding paid work. As an intern myself, I know it isn’t always easy being new in a place where everyone else knows each other and their way around, so to see how quickly people move into Dutch society is nothing short of impressing.
Just last week, we held a workshop in Amsterdam where we asked newcomers to ‘pitch their dreams’. Using myself as an example, I explained how this internship was my first step towards my future dreams, and we asked them to share their own journey. It’s funny to see how similar we are, and inspiring to hear that many of them know exactly what they want. Even better, their experience at NewBees has helped them move a step or two close to their future goals!
I feel lucky to be a part of this team and to contribute to the work that NewBees does. My colleagues come from far-away places like Syria and Noord-Brabant, and they help me learn more every day. To top it off, the NewBees team – as well as the newbees we match – know how to have fun! I have ice skated with newcomers, taken a picture with our mayor, indulged myself in Syrian treats and shared the holiday spirit with the NewBees team. I don’t know what the next three months will bring, but I hope I will leave with as much drive and positivity that my colleagues and newcomers have. For now, I am just happy to say that I feel a little bit less like a newbee myself.