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“Almere is a beautiful city with many ex-pats”

My name is Gabriela. I was born in 1985 in a small town in Romania called Targu-Neamt. I came to Holland in the year 2012 and directly to Almere. I live in Literatuurwijk. This is my story.

Targu-Neamt is a beautiful city with a lot of history but with few job opportunities.
I have been a good student and when I finished VWO school (2005) I left my country and I went to Italy for a better life for me and my parents. At that time I was 20 years old.

A new beginning: new language, new culture and I started working as a cleaner. I found it really difficult in Italy but with the help of my sister and with my motivation I continued. Two years later I met my husband and the situation became different.

We got married in 2010 and after that our path changed.  The economic situation in Italy became bad and in 2012, with the help of friends, we decided to go to the Netherlands for another adventure. In the beginning, it was also difficult here, but I always stay positive and I gave the situation time to develop.

We lived in Muziekwijk for 1 year and then we moved to Haarlem for 4 years. Haarlem is an old and beautiful city, but our chances to buy a house there were few. In 2013 our first daughter was born and our life changed. Three years later, in July, our second daughter came and we had to move again but now we had the chance to buy a house. Not in Haarlem but in Almere.

We have seen many houses in 2016, but the feeling of ‘at home’ we have found in Literatuurwijk. In May 2016 we came back to Almere but this time in our own house. I never dreamed it could happen.

I am married and we have two daughters. I am a housewife and don’t have a job yet. Everybody needs ‘flex workers’ but with two kids at home this is really hard. Luckily my husband has a good job and I can take care of our kids myself.

Now we have been here for almost 6 years and we found that we really like it here.
Almere is a beautiful city with many ex-pats. The children have many activities and a nice library in the center. And lots of nature.

Our neighborhood Literatuurwijk is a friendly and nice neighborhood. The children have done many activities at the neighborhood center and we are also happy and content with the school Omnibus. I feel fortunate about this opportunity to live here and I hope my children will have a good life.

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Photos, Interview and Text: Lyla Carrillo Quan - van der Kaaden
Text Revision: Babette Rondón
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