‘I came to Ireland alone, but now I have my lovely Irish family’
2016-11-15 13:32:21 -
The Integration Question with Princess Pamela Toyin

When she made the decision to leave Brazil in 2012, with the help and influence of a close friend who had been living in Dublin, little did Debora Correia da Silva know that she would make Ireland her second home.

It was meant to be one of those flying study visits, Debora recalls being embraced with open arms from the day she first stepped on Irish soil to study English. “The Irish are really welcoming, with a great sense of humour and always willing to help,” says very outgoing Debora, who likes to learn new things, be with her friends and family, travel and enjoy music.

Between 2012 and 2014, she studied English and commercial management, after which she hit the employment market. “Ireland is a welcoming country that offers people from different nations the opportunity to visit, study, work and even stay, given the circumstances,” she says.

And in Deborah’s circumstances, she experienced a passionate relationship with Ireland and the Irish people that convinced her to stay. Not disappointed by the Irish dream, Debora is making the best of what the country offers her – such as the humanitarian system, which compares favourably with other countries.

“Without losing what makes it so special to me, Ireland is a country that cares about its own people and people from other countries as well, a small country with a big heart, where I feel welcome and safe.” For someone who used to be a teacher and translator in Brazil, Deborah loves her current job in customer service.

“I see Ireland as a country with a high potential to grow economically as international companies are investing in it,” she says, citing the presence of tech giants Facebook and Google in Dublin.

“Ireland having being ranked the number one country in the Good Country Index in 2014, which ranks countries that contribute the most to humanity, is an indicator that Ireland will be a more solid country economically speaking, and in other areas as a consequence,” she adds.

“I have actually noticed that there have been improvements in the [Irish] economy, probably due to the fact that foreign companies are coming to Ireland. I have seen loads of job opportunities for those who speak a second language as well, maybe caused by the vast number of different nationalities in the country.”

Debora has never been involved in campaigning for any causes; nevertheless, she does support and help two charities every month by giving some money. Many of her decisions have been guided and influenced by her surroundings and experience.

With a settled work and family life, a native Irish husband and raising her own family, Debora, like many migrants, may never consider returning to her country of origin. “I actually came to Ireland alone, but now I have my lovely Irish family,” says the 46-year-old, who explains that she has never experienced anything negative with regard to her ethnicity, but what she wishes could be changed or improved is Ireland’s “bad weather”.

She adds: “Thinking of living here forever sounds like a long, long time, but if anyone asks me, I would say Ireland is home to me and where I want to be for many years to come.”

- If you’re an immigrant anywhere in the world and have a story to share, whether on your own behalf or on behalf of someone else, please email echoesmediainternational@gmail.com.

Princess Pamela Toyin is a journalist and author with over 25 years’ experience in various roles, including as an executive PA to company directors, as a public relations executive, reporter, editor and publisher, research consultant and workshop facilitator.

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