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“My work gives me financial security”

Eine Frau mit langen, blonden Haaren und dunklen Augen schaut in die Kamera.
Marina is now optimistic about the future again.

“My work gives me financial security”

My name is Marina. I’m married with three children and four grandchildren. My husband and I wanted to build a future for our family in Germany. After three years though, we came back to Serbia. Thanks to the support I've been given I've been able to set up my own business here.

Our life in Serbia was very precarious before we moved to Germany. My husband worked as a day labourer on construction sites and I earned some money as a harvester. We wanted to start afresh somewhere else, so we went to Germany – although we didn’t have a future there. We came back to Serbia voluntarily, because I wanted to spare us and my children from deportation.

Eine Frau reinigt einen Teppich mit einem Staubsauger.
Marina cleans for private individuals and for companies.

My own cleaning service

It felt good to be back in our own home – even though it’s small. But our money troubles soon returned. One day someone from the organisation “Help e.V. – Hilfe zur Selbsthilfe” was going door to door in our neighbourhood. He asked us and other families who had come back if any of us were interested in starting a business. I suggested I had an idea about setting up a cleaning service.

Help e.V. referred me to the German Information Centre for Migration, Training and Employment (DIMAK) in Belgrade, where I filled out all the necessary documents. A few days later, DIMAK had already registered my business. The team also helped me to buy the cleaning equipment and products I needed to get started.

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That meant I could start working right away, so I looked for customers and wrote some quotes. In the end I was awarded the contract for cleaning a large furniture store. I also employed another woman, and since then we’ve been working together as a team. We get orders from companies as well as private individuals.

I’m happy to be my own boss. The work gives me serenity and security. It makes me proud to pay income tax and national insurance. I like to spend my free time with my grandchildren. We’re sticking together as a family.

As of: 02/2021

I’m happy to be my own boss.
Marina