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#RealLifeStories: Jihan

“Don’t dream about your dreams, rather work on them. It’s not hard to reach your goals.” This is Jihan’s advice not only to refugees like her who encountered tremendous obstacles on their journey, but also to all of us.

Jihan is a thirty-five years old Syrian refugee, mother of two young teenagers, who has been living in The Hague for about a year and a half. But this is far from being the complete portrait of this inspiring woman. She was also a student of our English program, and her courage and determination drove us to meet again a couple of weeks ago to get her personal story, one that carries a message of hope.

Jihan has been on a journey, all in search for a stable future. The trip was not an easy one: moving from Syria to Iraq, from Iraq to Turkey, from Turkey to the Netherlands, she spent some time in refugee camps. She had to learn everything from scratch and had to start over many times. But she never gave up, as she knew her hard work would eventually pay off.

And it did. After following our English project program and even asking for extra individual lessons, she got admitted to the Hogeschool in The Hague, where she just started a Bachelor in Marketing. Not only is she doing a full-time study program that keeps her busy four days a week, but she is also working an administration job once a week. She does not see it as being a pain though, rather a way to meet new people, to practice both her Dutch and English, and to be able to integrate better to the international community that makes The Hague such a special place.

Jihan has always been a hard-working person, and now more than ever, she is ready to take on any challenge.

Jihan is very thankful for all of our volunteers who helped her along the way, and her UID family is very proud of her achievements! Keep up the good work!

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