Hilal Moursel is a former refugee from Syria or as he calls it, a “newcomer”. Hilal has been living in the Netherlands since 2015, and is currently volunteering at Unicef, Save the Children, participant of a RTH bootcamp at Booking, interpreter at Wijkplein, but Hilal is most and far-most an entrepreneur, an inspired man with dreams and ambitions that he will fulfill here in the Netherlands. “I am like a gladiator and I will always keep fighting until I succeed”.
What is your experience with the Dutch labour market?
“I certainly believe that there is enough work for all foreigners here in the Netherlands. However, there is a lack of knowledge, knowledge of Dutch HR professionals and other gatekeepers about the educational level of people like me, about our knowledge and skills. When I apply now I often get the same diplomatic answer, thank you for your response but we don’t have anything available for you now. They don’t know enough about where we come from. More attention needs to be paid to training”.
What is the biggest obstacle you and other newcomers face now?
“The media attention about newcomers is too one-sided and too negative. That provides a distorted picture of newcomers and limits us in the labour market, this really has to change! Fortunately, there are also many newcomers who have had successful experiences”.
What could aid organisations do better?
“I believe more attention should be paid to training, particularly capacity training. If I need more IT skills for a particular job that is in great demand, teach me and I’ll do it. Even the half-day bootcamp is too short. A one-week program would work better. There should be separate training programs aimed at certain skills that are desired.
What do aid organisations do well here?
“I have met many people who really want to help, friendly and motivated people. There is also a large active network of newcomers, for example on Facebook where advice and experiences are exchanged, this is very useful.
What are your ambitions at the moment, where do you work towards?
“I want to change the perception of us as newcomers here. I would also like to set up a training program (called Together) in collaboration with for example Refugee Talent Hub, to better equip people in finding a job. There is an economic revolution going on here in the Netherlands and I want to lead the way with my initiative Together that will be for all newcomers!
What would you like to advice others in a similar situation like you?
“Everything is possible. Continue striving and don’t give up. We have come a long way and here too we can make our dreams come true. Keep dreaming and you will succeed! ”