Migrating into a foreign land can present so many challenges. Here’s how you can help a friend or someone you someone coming from a different background:
Talk to them: Culture shock is common among migrants. This is especially true if they come from a country or race with a different set of values and traditions. When they move into a new, foreign place, it is expected they’ll feel a bit odd and uneasy with the transition. They may find cultural activities or mannerism that are different from what they’re used to, or worse, challenge their long-held beliefs.
One of the things you can do is to help them acknowledge these cultural differences and accept them. Talk to them and make them understand, especially if they have misguided perceptions. It also helps if you’ll tell them more about your culture and other important guides and etiquettes to help them stay informed.
Build on the similarities of each culture: Every culture is unique, but they also share some similarities with each other. Try to find the resemblance or common grounds between your culture and your friend’s. Explore issues about each culture and be open about learning or sharing opinions.
Introduce games and activities native to the country: Introduce books, games, hobbies, or pasttimes that are relevant to the culture. This helps in spending quality time while keeping them informed.
Avoid prejudice: Prejudice is a deal-breaker when you’re trying to get to know someone from a different background. It clouds your judgment with non-factual basis and prevents your chances of understanding and learning a mix of culture and tradition.
Even if prejudice is rampant in today’s society, it doesn’t mean that you can’t get away from that. Eliminate biases and discrimination. Learn to cultivate compassion and tolerance. Be open-minded about new things and greater perceptions. It is how you get to meet and understand people from all walks of life and develop life-long inklings and learnings from them.
Become a volunteer: Volunteering is one way to help support migrants from multicultural backgrounds. You can appreciate the opportunity of knowing them and learning from the differences. Personally, it helps you become more culturally diverse from your group.
But if you can’t be a volunteer, be kind enough to help them find one. You can look it up online or you may ask around. There are tons of groups and organizations that are focused on helping minorities in Holland.