Prove yourself worthy, but to whom?

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Artikel in de Standaard: Ik wil bewijzen …

This is an artikel, another one, written with vluchtelingen in mind. However, this article touches on a point that I think 99% of newcomers can relate to. It doesn’t matter where you come from or what your story is, once you’re here you’re back to nul en nothing.

Our lives are categorised by resident status. Our names registered on scales of migrant to expat. Our languages reduced to hobby, our cultures to television transmissions.

We’re asked to integrate, but what does that mean. Learn the language, find a job. But the majority of us had jobs, professions even. Many of us have diplomas and work experience to match. It does not matter here.

Nothing you did before matters here and your experience outside of these arbitrary borders counts for nothing. Prove yourself. Prove that you know something about anything. Live here long enough and it’ll be to yourself that you need to be doing the proof work.

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Bib voor iedereen ♥︎

Proud moment, indeed!
Would I like to be an ambassador for the campaign Bibvooriedereen??? You bet.
As someone who has been a stranger in several “strange” lands now, I have to say that the library in each and every case kept life going. Local information, language learning, contact with people, activities for children … and the million other reasons we should all be getting behind the bib. I wouldn’t be where I am now without the library and the librarians. Respect, Bibliotheek Kortrijk!

♥︎ the bib? Sign the charter: http://www.bibvooriedereen.be/charter.html

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EN: “Bibliotheek Kortrijk is where I go to meet and make my world. Between the pages of the books and the rows of shelves I never know who or what I’ll come across, but I always leave there richer for the experience.”

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Pause for thought

I took a new job in September. I have to watch what I say. Or do I? If you’re sure that what you’re doing is right and just, then you shouldn’t worry about people asking questions. If you truly support progress and collaboration with your fellow citizens in a meaningful project of community building where everyone’s worth counts …  just saying. It feels an awful lot like a great big show. We can hear the music but our eyes are on the dance floor. Patience and perseverance. Still, not silenced.