Hello, my name is Rebeca and I’m an expat, just like you. I first arrived to The Netherlands in 2013 because I decided to marry the lovely Italian guy I met in Finland back in 2009. The Netherlands wasn’t my first ‘abroad’ experience, but it certainly has been the most challenging because it also happens to be the one that was not-so-temporary to begin with.
I’m originally from Mexico and, as you probably just read, I’ve been living -even if for a while- in two other countries than the one I’m from and the one I’m living at right now. I’m a trained psychologist and, as every other expat I was ‘suffering’ the Dutch Medical System when a friend of mine suggested I joined an International Panel to improve the Medical Services in the area. So I suddenly found myself having the chance to actually do something about it! Didn’t spend too much time thinking about it and started to volunteer and actively participate in the meetings that later lead to the opening and set up of SGE International.
I’ve witnessed the interest of Dutch professionals, Organisations, and Health Care Providers to make their services not only better, but more suitable and available for Internationals. Many Health Professionals are truly open, focused, and interested in closing the gap. But to do that, they need our help, and I mean YOUR help, and mine. They need us to speak up, to share our experiences, our views, opinions, fears, and expectations in order to better develop the strategies and adjust their services within the National Medical Standards to begin with.
That is why I recently decided to volunteer once more, together with Dirk Jan Frijling and H4i Network, to lead the process of getting together an International Board representing as many regions of The Netherlands, and as many countries of origin as possible. You see, I think we cannot wait when it comes to Healthcare…being far from home is hard enough in and on its own, right? We need to make sure we are heard, and that those changes will in fact, respond to our most immediate needs. So please think about it, but don’t overdo it. We need you to step forward! In fact, I need you to stop thinking this is someone else responsibility because we both know you can be as impactful as you want to be, don’t you think?
This might not be as important for you to know, but I’m on the verge of getting to know our first baby. And I thought I'd share this with you so you know how important I think all this is. I simply refused to wait ’til next year to make things happen. Six different regions of The Netherlands are already working towards these changes, each of which has lots of Healthcare Providers involved. The scenario is set up and the time is now. We cannot wait any longer if we truly want to be heard and considered.
We’re doing our best to set this up in a way that works for all members, but to do that we need you to take action today. I promise I’ll do my best to contact you as soon as possible to arrange a brief meeting through the media we conclude to be best for both of us.
I need you to raise your hand today and say “I’ll do it”, “I’m interested and I want to know more”.