Almere Deze Week is a weekly newspaper with local news for the inhabitants of Almere. It is published in Dutch. Below you find an interview with one of our International Almere members, Luciana Fonseca, and summaries of 3 articles of this week’s edition translated into English for the community of International Almere. They have been translated with the permission of the editors of “Almere Deze Week”. The board of international Almere wishes to hank Courtesie (www.courtesie.nl) for their quick and accurate work to translate the summaries into English, so that the international community of Almere can be informed and feel connected with the city they live in.
The original articles in Dutch can be found in the hard copy version of “Almere Deze Week” and online via this link: www.almeredezeweek.nl.
This week we present you the following titles:
- Luciana Fonseca – a professional expat in Almere
- Productive work behind bars
- A free meal for the less fortunate, with Buitengewoon Almere
- Almere’s Rebecca Belmer unveils new Solar Boat 2018
Luciana Fonseca – a professional expat in Almere
By Robert Mienstra
ALMERE – Luciana and her family have lived in Almere for six months. She is getting used to her new life in the Netherlands. She already reads Dutch well. And is also learning to speak the language. After a lengthy period of international wandering, Luciana Fonseca exchanged Brazil for Almere. “Here we do not, at all, have the feeling of insecurity which we had in São Paulo.” Luciana Fonseca continues, “My experience as an expat was very useful in Almere”.
Luciana Fonseca: “My experience as an expat was very useful in Almere.”
(Photo: Almere DEZE WEEK)
Fonseca calls her family ‘professional expats’. “We have lived and worked in Brazil, America, Australia, Spain and England, where I met my husband. And now we’re in the Netherlands, in Almere. My husband works for an international group in Amsterdam. The most important thing is to learn the language immediately, in order to be able to integrate properly. I am now taking language lessons at the ROC in Muziekwijk. And our daughter of thirteen is at the International School in Poort. The school was the reason that we came to Almere. The schools in Amsterdam were expensive, and full. So for us, Utrecht and Almere remained as places to live. The choice fell on Almere, because houses here are simply cheaper and because our daughter could seamlessly continue her studies at the International School.
For Fonseca, the big difference between São Paulo and Almere is, above all, the feeling of security. “In Brazil, everyone is just busy surviving, and that includes surviving robberies and crime. We lived in constant fear that our daughter would be kidnapped. It is so different in Almere. She can go to school by bike, or to the center, or go out with friends – without us having to worry.” Fonseca likes Almere very much. “The space, the nice houses, the architecture, the friendly people, the short distance to Amsterdam – it all makes this a pleasant place to live.” And a couple of other things really strike Fonseca as different, “The district heating – it’s good for the environment. And… the water! It tastes so good here. We haven’t experienced this anywhere else.”
Fonseca’s experience as an expat came in handy. “When I decided to learn the language, I went straight to the library. Wherever I have lived, that’s always the place to get good information. And that goes for Almere too. Via the library I ended up at the ROC.” She also benefits greatly from her membership of the International Almere association. “I go to the Friday Night Drinks in Café op 2, where we talk English to each other. And in the Dutch Language Café at International Almere we only speak Dutch to each other. If I want information it’s easy to get via the International Almere website and Facebook page. My daughter wanted to join a choir… we found one via International Almere.”
Fonseca still wants to say more about the people of Almere. “They are very nice and very open people, but not as easy to understand as I thought. I often don’t understand the humor here – it’s usually black humor. When someone falls here, they laugh first, and only then do they help. In Australia, it’s exactly the other way around. But don’t misunderstand me, I know that this has to do with culture and also with language. I still have to learn to understand it.”
Fonseca was originally a photographic designer. “And in Australia I taught English. Now I am setting up my own, online business. So if we move to another country again, I can take my online company with me. But that is not yet the case. It suits us well here. First of all, my daughter must get her diploma. The International School was the reason to come and live here. She likes it very much, and so do we.”
Luciana can be followed online on YouTube, Facebook and blog. Search term: Lugoesdutch. Association for Expats in Almere: www.internationalalmere.com
Productive work behind bars
By Marcel Beijer
DE VAART – There’s work going on at the Almere penitentiary. During their stay, the 300 or so detainees can choose to work in one of nine work rooms. Everything is aimed at ensuring that detainees’ return to society is optimized, via a reintegration process. This is based on the five areas in which many problems are experienced – identity, housing, income, healthcare and debt. If these are identified, targeted help can be offered and the chance that the problems will repeat is much smaller.
A free meal for the less fortunate, with Buitengewoon Almere
By Hestia Ruben
ALMERE – Food surpluses are being processed into healthy meals and distributed to the less privileged – people on a low income. Buitengewoon Almere, which started with an alliance of five partners, served its first meal at the Salvation Army in Almere Buiten in September, 2017. In the meantime, 35 coalition partners have joined the project and it is also active in Stad and Haven.
Millicent Schepman at work in the kitchen of “Hand in Hand 4all” in “de Bloemenbuurt”. (Photo: Fred Rotgans)
Almere has around 12,000, registered, minimum-income households. These are people with such a low income that they find it difficult to put a healthy meal on the table every day.
Almere’s Rebecca Belmer unveils new Solar Boat 2018
ALMERE – On Thursday, 5 April, the TU Delft Solar Boat Team unveiled its latest solar-powered hydrofoil, at its partner, Bayards. Almere student Rebecca Belmer unveiled the boat.
Note: All of the above-mentioned articles were originally written in Dutch and published by “Almere Deze Week”, edition May 9, 2018. They were translated for International Almere by Courtesie International Business Affairs www.courtesie.nl