Migration To Europe
I’m an African immigrant who migrated to the United Kingdom in search of financial and economic freedom almost twenty years ago. I assume I am among the lucky ones who came to study in England but still had to go through all the tides and turns in my new environment in order to make a living.
According to a recent BBC report of September 2018 (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe), the highest number of arrivals recorded in 2015 was 1,015,078 and more than 800,000 of them were trafficked by sea from Turkey to Greece, and the majority of them continued to travel through Europe to reach Germany and Sweden. All these at a very great price and risk of their lives.
I understand that the issue of migration is a hot topic and will remain very debatable all over the world. But I have decided to share my personal immigration experience with financial and economic challenges while growing up in Africa that led me to seek opportunities in England.
This is purposely to highlight the issue of poverty and the quest for survival in the third world countries. Why? Because of my desire to see a change in the world, I am not here to preach tolerance and self-pity or politics but my intention is to show case a story of resilience, creativity, perseverance and success.
How It All Began
I was born and raised in Lagos Nigeria. I finished high school at 17 and went to the University seven years later to study Psychology. Shortly after my first degree in the western part of Nigeria, I came to Britain – thanks to my caring brother in the United Kingdom.
I was determined to turn around the financial and economic hardship of my child-hood. So, I enrolled in the college in the city of London for a diploma programme in business and then later did a Masters degree in Public Health. I did all these while I was working and also raising a family.
Ray of Hope Dashed Too Soon
When I finished my Public Health degree, I began a professional career in mental health in one of UK National health service. But my hope and aspirations were suddenly dashed after about a year on the job when I was unable to extend my visa. The problem impacted my job, I was traumatised that the immigration services were looking for me and I couldn’t concentrate at work.
Eventually, I had to quit the job to sit at home with a wife who equally couldn’t work and two young kids. This was the beginning of another seven years of financial hardship and journey in hell for us in Britain as we went through different court appeals and the endless waiting. All my preconceived ideas and notions about Europe while I was growing up in Nigeria disappeared before my very eyes.
I know some may wonder and ask; why do you have to put yourself and family through all that? Why don’t you just go back to Nigeria? The answer is, there is simply nowhere to go back to. We were not ready to put our children through the agony of financial difficulties we grew up in. So we decided to persevere and develop ourselves.
It Was Not All Bad News
The experience taught us so much that we created two home businesses. My wife became very creative – she started baking decorative cakes for special occasions, birthdays and weddings while I became a painter. The community became our safety net where we invested our time and energy in voluntary work and we served in our local church for almost seven years without a single pay check.
We literally became self-employed and very handy. In addition, our family and friends were also our lifeline as they supported us in every way they could because we had no aid from the government. Indeed, we survived those days and thanks for that experience. It positively shapes our lives because of all the effort we put into educating ourselves with free online courses. Otherwise, I wouldn’t know about Wealthy Affiliate or online marketing.
How Do You Overcome Financial Obstacles As An Immigrant?
My passion is to see a new world where opportunities abound irrespective of where you are born; where people will never have to risk their lives to get to Europe or anywhere in the world in search of financial and economic freedom, where no child will go to bed hungry or out of school because parents cannot afford school fees.
So, here is my take for anyone who is an immigrant or undocumented. There are loads of opportunities on the internet now than ever before and you can literally educate yourself online, get skills and resources that will make your life better. You can check out the link below.
Hopefully you will not have to risk your life like I did or like many people are still doing today if you utilise the power of the internet anywhere you are in the world.
I hope my story will propel anyone with immigration obstacles to action; go to the library or anywhere with free internet access if that is a problem, discipline yourself and do whatever it will take for you to walk your way into financial freedom.
Thank you for taking the time to read my story.
Please, do leave a comment or any question in the box below and i will respond to you in good time.