Zeljka Secerbegovic

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After so many years in Denmark, I don’t feel foreign. I have friends, acquaintances and work colleagues who are part of feeling at home, and I think like a Dane. But salty licorice and liver pate - I have yet to get used to that.

I like to tell positive stories about the women that I meet in my work with the "neighbourhood mothers". They are women who work every day and want to contribute to the community, which supports and helps other women. Right now, I know someone who needs a job. I pass that on to my network. We know it is difficult. You get an education in Denmark, and yet you do not get a job. It is such a waste of resources and skills. I know it's not easy to move to a new country and start from scratch. I'd like to write a book about that sometime. Because I can see everything is still the same as when I first came here.

Last year, I gave some presentations in Bosnia about women in leadership positions. I talked about how women can get a better life. It makes sense to work across national borders. And the society needs the positive stories. Problems cannot be solved if you constantly focus on all the negative things. I'm no gardener, but then I bought some tomato plants. The scent sent me back to Bosnia. I became a little nostalgic, but also happy about the life I’ve got. One can have money and a huge house - but the scent of the tomato plant made me happy. If there are no positive things, you dig out the negative things. Then the tomato plant no longer smells. It reeks.

Zeljka Secerbegovic / 52 / female / married / a child / senior consultant in The Association of Neighbourhood Mothers / Herning / from Bosnia / came to Denmark in 1992 / residence permit in 1995