Osama studied in Syria to become an English teacher. In 2011, he fled to Turkey where he lived for seven years and worked in the event industry and as an interpreter. After years of being denied a residence permit in Turkey, he was threatened of being sent back to Syria. He decided to go to Europe, where he hoped that life would be easier, safer and more appropriate for him.
Immediately after arriving in the Netherlands, in November 2018, Osama started studying Dutch. “Language can be a barrier for newcomers. Not being able to express yourself is frustrating.” He himself speaks four languages: Arabic (his mother tongue), English (learned in Syria), Turkish and now also Dutch. In addition to attending his language classes, Osama worked as a volunteer at the Hermitage Museum. At the same time, he joined Makers Unite and worked as a guide in the Arabic language at the Stedelijk Museum.
“Language can be a barrier for newcomers. Not being able to express yourself is frustrating”
“We all dream about our ideal job. But once we arrive here, we often have to do all sorts of things before we find a position that really suits us.” Before joining NewBees, Osama applied to several jobs at companies that did not hire him because he was a refugee. At NewBees Amsterdam, where he works as a passionate and successful matcher for the past two years, everything went easily. “Step by step I come closer to the goals that I have set for myself.” Osama wants to learn more, become more proficient in Dutch and a role model for others. “I love my job. The team is diverse, friendly, professional. NewBees feels like family. Everyday I get up and go to work with great motivation and pleasure.”
“When someone is motivated and really wants to work and I manage to help that person, that’s very cool.”
Motivation is key for Osama. He likes to help newcomers who are motivated and ready to take the first step towards employment. Even if they have to start with a job that is different from what they expect or want. Newcomers sometimes need extra encouragement or more support in finding the right path. Recently he helped a dentist who couldn’t find work in the Netherlands. Osama matched him to an internship where he gained valuable experience. The dentist is happy because he is getting closer to his dream job. “When someone is motivated and really wants to work and I manage to help that person, that’s very cool.”
“Work greatly contributes to making you self-reliant and independent.”
Now and then he encounters someone who does not understand the importance of volunteering or unpaid internships. “Volunteering testifies of your motivation and is greatly appreciated. In the meantime, you learn the language, experience the Dutch work culture, gain practice and develop new skills.” Osama believes that in order to come across new opportunities and build an independent future you must go out, participate in activities, meet people, develop a network, and work. “Work greatly contributes to making you self-reliant and independent.”