Category Archives: immigration

Flatsharing with a Refugee #5

when religion gets in the way

When I was first introduced to Izat, I was expecting to be faced with different cultural customs and habits. I had however not expected to live with someone for whom religion is such an important part of life. Call me naive, but I simply hadn’t considered it. Izat is an avid follower of Islam, but it took me a while to figure that out. Because we only talked about basic things such as housekeeping, school and work, I had no idea how important being faithful to his God was to him and how much that would end up influencing our living together.

flatsharing with a refugee, on religion

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Flatsharing with a Refugee #4

on sex, love and relationships

I have never asked myself so many questions about the subject of relationships, as since I began living with Izat. Never before have I had so many problems expressing myself and explaining things to someone else when talk turns to the Belgian view on love and friendship. And to be honest, it’s the cause of a fair amount of frustration because our views on these themes are so vastly different.

flatsharing with a refugee, on love, sex and relationships

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Flatsharing with a Refugee #3

if not today, then surely tomorrow

Time is precious. For most of us probably so much so that it takes up a large amount of our lives. Making and planning our time for all sorts of things such as work, appointments, social occasions, ourselves and our partners, can be quite frankly, exhausting. Like no other people, the Flemish are masters at explaining why we really can’t meet for at least another three weeks because, well, our diaries simply won’t allow it.

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Employers: Preparing for Brexit

which scenario, when and how

We’d hoped January’s Brexit vote would finally deliver some clarity, but alas, nothing has changed. We find ourselves no closer to an answer than when ‘the people spoke’ back in the 2016 referendum. What is clear however, is that we need to prepare as best we can. As the withdrawal date of the United Kingdom from the European Union (EU) is approaching, many companies are becoming increasingly worried about the impact this will have on their workforce and business in general.

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Community Help Service

We’re here for anyone who wants to express themselves

In our fast-paced, ever-on society, people are struggling to cope more than ever before. We spend too much time glued to our screens and not enough with each other. Add to this the stress of moving to a new country and the ensuing culture shock, and it comes as little surprise that organisations like the Community Help Service, or CHS for short, are seeing a steady rise in requests for support. Offering a wide range of services, the non-profit organisation is a welcome resource for the English-speaking expatriate population of Belgium.

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Pathways to a Competitive Future

for Brussels and Antwerp

Our two largest cities, Brussels and Antwerp, are the only two Belgian cities to feature among Europe’s top 50 economic centres. Brussels is our major gateway for international finance, investment and institutions, while Antwerp is our major port city with specialisms in logistics, manufacturing, diamonds, retail and business services. Each have their own unique strengths, but how do they compete on a global scale? And what exactly is it that makes a city competitive?

left: Antwerp
right: Brussels

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Flatsharing with a Refugee #1

our first encounter was awkward

As professionals in the global mobility sector, we know all about managing culture shock, helping our assignees adapt to new environments, and spend a lot of time considering matters such as cost of living allowances and hardship locations. But what about those who move halfway across the globe with no help whatsoever? The people who leave their homes behind for entirely different reasons than a (temporary) foreign assignment? ReLocate spoke with freelance journalist and millennial Deborah Seymus, whose monthly column on living with a young refugee is published by Knack online and republished here with their permission. We look forward to bringing you her column over the coming issues as we explore a brand new view on life in Belgium.

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Single Permit Update

Flanders introduces new policies on employment of foreign nationals

by:

As a result of the 6th state reform in 2014, the legislative competence as regards the employment of foreigners has been transferred to the regional level. The regions have been empowered to develop their own policies on the employment of foreign workers in function of the specific needs of their labour market. Flanders is first amongst the three regions to introduce new policies in this area. Brussels might follow the example in the next legislature while the Walloon region seems not to prioritize this policy area. Fragomen met with the cabinet of Philippe Muyters, Flemish Minister of Work, Economy, Innovation and Sports, this October and reports back on this topic.

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Belgium through Expat Eyes

Expat Insider Survey 2017 - InterNations

How do expats experience life outside of the office in their adopted home countries? Expat network InterNations surveyed their membership on 43 individual factors that influence an expat’s experience. The survey delves into issues ranging from reasons for moving abroad to how easy it is to make friends in your adoptive country. Ranked in 65 expatriate destinations around the world, respondents were also asked to rate factors on a scale of one to seven. With over 12,500 respondents representing 166 nationalities and living in 188 countries or territories, the Expat Insider survey provides a unique insight into what life is like abroad. We wanted to know how Belgium fares on a global scale.

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