Thirty-two-year-old Michael from Congo has been in Serbia for less than two years and would like to stay in our country because he feels safe here, speaks the Serbian language and tries to integrate into the Belgrade community. Upon his arrival in Serbia, APC/CZA helped him start the asylum procedure and exercise his rights as an asylum seeker.
Through participation in training for entering the labor market in Serbia, the understanding of local context, business behavior and communication, assistance with active job search, moving to the private address in Belgrade, APC helped Michael to establish the first connections with the new community. In Serbia, Michael learned how to use an ATM card, he has a health card and an employment contract for the first time, he cooks by himself at home, plans his expenses, gets introduced with theater work, he also acted in a play, and he has his first Serbian friends.
We helped Michael get a job in a small Belgrade textile recycling company. Although the employers were worried that this work would be tiresome for him, Michael did everything to reassure them. He is conscientious, regular at work, tries to help with everything, and he improves use of the Serbian language every day. He was welcomed in a small team that tries to work as a family, supporting and helping each other in their daily work.
Michael recently brought us a symbolic gift created at his workplace, a recycled cashmere scarf.
He is very grateful to our team and proud of himself. Despite the pandemic, he managed to take the first few steps toward a normal life.
For years, the legal and integration APC/CZA team has been helping asylum seekers and refugees across Serbia to exercise their right to work and find employment. We are contacted by the employers who more and more often see asylum seekers and refugees as their potential employees due to the need for labor in Serbia. Our integration sector helps in collecting the necessary documentation, selection, we help employers understand the context from which asylum seekers come, the challenges they face every day, their efforts to establish a normal life and healthy relationships, and we help refugees in understanding the contract and the job itself, as well as perseverance and professional attitude toward work and colleagues.