The family touch

18.04.2009

When Slovenian Mojca Hostnik took part in an Erasmus programme in France, she had no idea that an international journey was about to start – with some timely advice from her EURES Adviser mother along the way... Mojca Hostnik, 26, from Slovenia, is a true European: she’s lived in France, is living in Ireland and will soon move to Spain – and all with the help of the European Commission and EURES. Through Mojca’s experiences travelling during her teens she realised that she wanted to live abroad more long-term: “In another country I can really use my skills and apply the knowledge that I have gained. As well as Slovenian, I speak fluent English and Spanish, good French and basic German, so there are many paths open to me.”

A student of Economics with a major in marketing, Mojca met her Spanish boyfriend Jesus in France during her studies while on an Erasmus exchange (the European Commission’s flagship education and training exchange programme). Together they decided that the next stage would be to improve their English. “I spoke some English but Jesus did not speak any. We decided that English is important professionally so we started looking for ways to improve.”

Mojca’s mother, Majda Hostnik, is a Slovenian EURES Adviser – so Mojca did not have far to go to get answers to her questions. Just as for any other client, Majda provided Mojca with all the background information and help necessary to make their dreams of working in Ireland become a reality: “I am very fortunate, my mum is great; her advice and support were wonderful.”

With her mother’s help Mojca searched the EURES website and quickly found two suitable jobs for her and Jesus at Rathsallagh House Country Hotel and Golf Club near Dublin. The application process was trouble-free: in just two weeks they applied for the jobs, were interviewed over the phone, bought flights and set off for Ireland.

Mojca worked in the fine dining restaurant of Rathsallagh House and Jesus worked originally as a house-keeper, later moving to the restaurant with Mojca. They both enjoyed their work and found their colleagues very helpful regarding all the essential paperwork which needed completing when they first arrived. Despite their colleagues’ help there were a few issues with the tax office but EURES was available to help: “It is always complicated moving between different administrations but my mum had clearly told me all the documentation which we would need in Ireland – she even helped me when the tax office made a mistake about my employer.”

Mojca and Jesus love Ireland and although they had originally planned to stay just six months, this has now been extended. They are now living in Dublin and Mojca works as a Customer Service Representative for the Slovenian market at Sportingbet.com, while Jesus is working as a mechanical engineer. “We have decided to stay longer as the wages here are good, we have made lots of friends and in the current economic climate we appreciate the stability of our jobs.”

Ultimately Mojca and Jesus will move to Spain, where they have just bought a house. You can rest assured that when Mojca arrives EURES will be getting a call: “EURES really helped us to start our new lives here in Ireland. To start a new life in a different country is not easy: there are no friends, no family, a totally different culture… and this is the moment when EURES becomes your best friend! I definitely recommend EURES to everybody who wants to go abroad because their help is very reliable and professional. For anyone who wants to have an adventure, just go – you won’t be disappointed.”

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