The story of Anis

One of the most amazing aspects that I learned living in the Netherlands is that it’s never too late to change your life. I thought, as many people also do, “I will not start doing this – learning new language, studying, changing jobs, changing countries, now?!” Well, live and learn.

Hi, my name is Anis, I’m 43 year old refugee from Yemen, and I work as a web developer in Pionect. I came with my family to the Netherlands in 2018 due to the still ongoing war in Yemen that started in 2015.

May 2018 in Aden port before leaving Yemen.

I had what can be considered a good career in Yemen before the war started, which kept me afloat for the first couple of years during the war. With the situation however getting worse, and without any prospect of things getting better, we realised that we cannot wait any longer, or my worst fear will come true –  we will come to a point when it will be too late for us to leave. We left everything behind and decided to start a new life. Me, my wife Nesreen, my 3 year old son Yusuf, and my 11 month old daughter Sara, chose Netherlands in 2018 to be our new home.

We went through a lot, but we learned a lot as well. We learned a new language, a new way of looking at things, and how to start overcoming our fears. Our best chance to resume our lives was to get back to work as fast as possible, which required both of us to learn new skills fast. We both were luck to find great people along the way. I was lucky to have found “Hack Your Future” – an organisation that helps people with limited access to labor market learn coding and find jobs in in the tech. I am thankful, not only for their continuous support, but also for the fact that with them I had to challenge myself once again.

Through ‘Hack Your Future’ I found a job with Pionect, a company with which I had my 2 year anniversary in June 2022. It was difficult at first, and at times it still is, but it is enjoyable experience nevertheless. Learning never stops, and is never easy, but I think it never should be, as your growth comes from the challenges you face. I have a great team and great mentors at Pionect who help me overcome those challenges. Looking 4 years back, I never would have thought to be in the place where I am now, and I realise that there is nothing holding you from living the life you want. Not war, not age, not language, nothing. For that realisation alone, I am forever grateful.

Anis Alkomem
5 July 2022

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