#LIMEStories – MEET ELI, a 25 years girl from Venezuela who is participating in the LIME project with positiveness and a lot of energy!

4 September 2020

#LIMEStories – MEET ELI, a 25 years girl from Venezuela who is participating in the LIME project with positiveness and a lot of energy!

Eliannys Cermeno is 25 years old, she is from Venezuela, she is a lawyer, but she has been working in the catering sector as waiter, cook, as well as many other different professions.

“I am Eliannys but everybody calls me Eli because it’s easier” – that’s how Eli started the talk with Dolinda, Project Manager of ALDA. “When I arrived in Spain, I went to some acquaintances in Madrid with whom I was living for 1 month and a half but not everything was as I was expecting“.

What were the first major difficulties you encountered when you arrived in a new country?

“In my case, the biggest challenge was not the language as most of other newcomers, but it was matter of lack of money”. Eli explained us that finding a job was extremely complicated for her above all when she didn’t have the work permission yet, because as asylum seeker, she couldn’t work without it.

“I tried to get the documents necessary to have my lawyer diploma recognized but it’s necessary to have a lot of money and the process is long, sometimes it is also matter of being lucky!”. As a matter of fact, despite the long and intense course of study, she didn’t manage to have her lawyer diploma recognized because the laws are different depending on the country. “My parents were always telling – you must study otherwise you will work in the kitchen or in the restaurants – and this is why I studied hard but when I came to Spain that is exactly what I am doing”.

How did you get to know about the LIMEproject?

“It happens once that I didn’t have a jacket nor money, and winter was coming”. That time, Eli went to a place in which for the people who needed it, it was possible to get clothes for free. In the queue, she met several people and she heard a person talking about a center (Pinardi) which was providing courses, training and other kind of support etc. Thanks to this suggestion, she went to look for Pinardi which proposed her to apply for the #LIMEproject.

How is your experience in the LIME project?

Eli was involved in the cookery course but the overall training went also beyond that – “I am very happy because the educators prepared us for having a job interview and for developing soft skills that it was important deepen”. She explained us that she managed to find a job even before the end of the course, but I also know that some of the other participants managed to find a job after the training.”

Do you have any advice for a newcomer coming to Madrid?

“This is very difficult question, because it brings to me memories from my past and how I felt when I arrived.

Starting a new life it’s never easy, but from Eli’s words “you have to always have a a very positive attitude”. This is the first advice that Eli would give to other people who found them self in the same situation of her. “It’s not your country, your law, in some cases it’s not your language, but you need to always think that things can switch on the right direction. There was a period during which I didn’t have money or work permission, but I always had the attitude that things could change. Everything that happens to you will make you the stronger person, so always use the difficult moment to become a more adult and mature person”.

Secondly, Eli explained us that even in difficult moments, she was always trying to keep herself occupied instead of being preoccupied, because “when you are positive, the positiveness comes back to you“.

Always being grateful for what you have – even for small things – and for the people who are helping you is the third advise that Eli would give and finally, she said that being always active helped her enormously to overcome complicated situations, because “you can’t just complain about what is happening in your life, you need to react to change that situation by finding the courses, the training, the job, etc. Good things can’t simply come to you, you are the one who has to move and to be active in order to make your life better”.

Eli’s energy and positiveness let us enchanted; we are sure that her courage and passion will be an inspiration for many people who will find them self in a similar situation.