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Karin: Decided to make the move but still very uncertain


Karin
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I am so glad that i found this site!!

We are in the process of immigrating and have a 6 year old son and 3 year old daughter - destination Perth Australia.

We hear terrible stories daily from "South Africans" that came back. The one lady claims that her children were pinched with needles by the Australian teachers because they are South Africans etc. We also heard stories that Afrikaners are treated very badly by the Australians and that most South Africans in Australia can't come back because they can not afford it as they are broke. :ilikeit:

Stories like these make you nervous because we have to also think about our Children. Please give me your honest opinion on this. We have already signed documents with a Migration company and would like to make sure we are not taking our kids to a worse place than they are now.

My Hubbie has concerns about the avarage living costs for a family of four as i will have to spend more time with the kids. My Husband has his own very succesfull business (Motor Mechanical Workshop, BM's) but will look at joining a company there. What is the working environment like. He needs to work for a boss again and he is extremely nervous about Oz. :ilikeit: It is a BIG decision and we will have to live with the Consequences.

He needs to be reassured that it is a better life us and that we will be ok. Thinking about the "look, listen, decide", i think it will be the best option.

I get very frustrated because i speak to all the people with wonderful testimonials and he gets all the bad ones. The one day you are going the next day he is unsure. It is driving me nuts. Please help me to get the TRUTH to him.

If you have any contact details of people where I can get testimonial from about their Australian experience I would appreciate it.

Thank you so much for your time and i think this a a fantastic site!

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Welkom by die forum Karin! So bly jy het ons "gevind", ek sal dit maar aan die Ozzie SAners oorlaat om jou vrae te beantwoord, ek issie so 'n ekspert oppie gebied van Daa Onne nie.

Maar moenie worry nie, jy sal gou heelwat ondersteuning kry sodra die lot in Australië wakker word. Tydzones is darem maar 'n interessante verskynsel!

:ilikeit: Hendie

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Hi Karin,

First up - don't panic! What you and hubby are going through is a stock standard typical reaction to the decision to immigrate - you will be plagued by uncertainties from time to time and will wonder wildly whether you are making the right decision.

We came to Sydney a few months ago and have had absolutely no problems in settling in. We've managed to make some friends, the kids are enjoying school, jobs are going well etc. That isn't to say that it is easy, but it certainly hasn't been too difficult either. I think that the stories that you've been hearing about the way SAffers are treated are just that - stories. I've found the Aussies to be perfectly pleasant and always interested in hearing about how we are finding life here. What they don't like is arrogance and I'm afriad that we SAffers can be insufferably arrogant. If you are going to move to another country, then you need to leave the SA arrogance and materialism behind - neither of those traits go down well here at all. Nobody cares about the size of your house, the year of your car, the money you earn, what you do for a living etc. You could be the dustbin man or the CEO of a multimillion dollar company - it doesn't matter. As long as you are 'good folk'.

With regards to the teacher story, I'm 100% certain that someone is being dramatic. It would simply not happen. My guess is that someone came here, was an arrogant fool and was told that to their face, couldn't take it and decided to leave, and so is now looking for excuses as to why they didn't cut it here. Of course, they won't see the real reason - 'cos that would mean admitting that they are arrogant :ilikeit: Not likely!

Nobody can tell you what to do Karin - all you can hope for is some advice and guidance from those that have already done it. Make sure that you only speak to people who have the personal experience. Don't listen to anyone that tells you 'my friend says........' ONLY listen to those that can say, 'when I moved to Australia, this is what happened.....'

On this forum, you will find many such people. We've all done it. Some love it, some may be less excited, and some may even have tried it and returned. Either way, I'm sure you'll find that we will all do our best to help out with as much objective information as possible.

Good luck - you'll be fine!

Ajay

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Hi Karin

We have been away from SA for 12 years - the only mistake we made - we should have done it a lot sooner.

If you have a positive and can do attitude - you will be OK here!

As for schools and children, I agree with Ajay 100% - any teacher found pricking kids with needles in an Aussie classroom - will wish they had never been born - I suggest that whoever told you this still believes in the fairies.

Feel welcome to send me a personal message if you wish. If you click on my name in the block on the left - you will go to my profile - where you will see "send an email" I would be more than happy to chat to you, if you prefer something more personal.

Edited by Mara
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Karin!

I'm not a South African.

However, the sagas that you'll be hearing will be from those that "didn't make it" in Australia.

Years ago, in the 1950s and 60s, Australia wanted to boost its population, so set about getting Poms from England. All they had to do was pay 10 pounds towards their fare and the Australian government paid the rest.

They came by the boatload.

There were a number of those that couldn't or wouldn't fit in and chose to go back to England.

In England, all you would hear would be the tales of those that hadn't made it.

Out of 20 Poms that came to Australia, 2 or 3 might go back, and of course, it was their story that everyone heard . . . . . not the 17 or 18 that "made" it in Australia!

So. . . . . beware of tales from those that have been here and tried that!

Out of the dozens that have gone back that you hear stories from, there are hundreds . . . thousands . . . of South Africans that have learnt to adapt and fit in and want to become part of what this BIG country has to offer . . . . . a secure future and prosperous time.

If all the thousands of South Africans that aren't going back are too broke to make it back home, then we'd all be in trouble financially . . . . not just those that had come here to Australia in the past couple of years.

In the words of a very successful insurance advert here . . . .

"Compare . . . . That's all we ask!"

Go for a visit to Canada, America, England, New Zealand . . . . . then check out Australia.

Check out our beaches, our cities, our workplaces, our houses, our open countryside, our deserts, our Outback, our rainforests, our Australian people and our way of life.

Your money will be happily refunded if not 100% satisfied!

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Well, with an ambassador like that how can we possibly lose? Excellent post Bob! :ilikeit:

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Welcome to the site.

Firstly just get on the plane quick, this is the most amazing place ever. You won't regret it. You will find that the people shooting Auz down have never been here or don't have a hope of getting in. Also have you ever met a South African who went back, I have only met one back in SA and they were the type of people who were arrogant and liked to jippo systems etc.

This is a place to live and not just exist like in SA. The teacher are amazing and the people in general very friendly. You need to have a positive attitude and you will be able to make it here. Your children will fit in so well and they will flourish, you won't regret it.

Good Luck

PS. If your hubby want to chat a some guys you can pm me and I will get my hubby to reply.

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Guest Seoul Sister

Hi Karin,

Welcome to the forum.

I am glad you have joined us, as this gives us an opportunity to help you set the record straight and to separate facts from fiction. I have also heard many stories of SAffers being victimized in Australia. Upon a little further investigation most of these incidences were misunderstandings due to cultural differences. I think because Australians are a lot like us, many expect them to be exactly the same, but they're not. (I am not sure whether I should say sadly they're not or luckily they're not :D )

Immigration is a really big step. I know a few South African families who moved to Oz only to end up moving back to SA and being much worse off. The two main reasons * in my experience * for these families moving back are

1. Unrealistic expectations

2. Lack of motivation

Set realistic expectations of what your life in Oz is going to be like. Research thoroughly and be clear on what things cost, what the house and garden sizes are like, taxes, medical care, schooling, etc, before moving.

Be very sure and specific on why you want to immigrate (and why to Oz). If you are not completely convinced that you will have a better life / future / environment than you have at the moment think very carefully before taking the plunge. If you are not sure about Oz, research wider and compare more countries to create a better picture of the advantage / disadvantages of different places.

Immigration is a little like having your first baby, EVERYONE for some or other very bizarre reason wants to add their 2 cents worth of mostly unwanted opinions, advice, stories, views, etc. The more weird and wonderful the story, the more likely they are to tell it to you. :ilikeit: I agree with everything mentioned by the others so far and want to stress one thing already mentioned : Be selective in who you listen to. *or take advice from*.

Good luck !

Love

Seoul Sister

:)

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Karin, welcome to the forum!

I see you already had a whole lot of replies to your post, nothing to which I can add anything (apart from agreeing with all of it). Don't lend your ears out to hearsay......

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Hi Karin

I agree with all the comments above.

It is amazing when you tell people that you intend to migrate, how many suddenly become specialists on Australia. This is all usually based on my friends brother sister etc and invariably embellished or plain urban legend.

In the five years that we have lived here 2 families out of the MANY that I know have returned.

The one family returned as the wife just missed her sisters and parents so much that she made the lives of her family and all who met with her miserable.

The other family could not replicate their lavish South African lifestyle and were not perpared to start with the smaller house, no BMW, and no domestic help( These people were extremely honest about the reasons to return and never gave the fault to Australia, only that they did not want to do it)

Please feel free to send me a private e-mail if you so wish.

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Hi Karin

Maybe I can give you some insight as to what we went through seeing as we are in Perth.

We came over end of Jan 2005,on a 457 visa, without any LSD trip.So we had NO idea what was really waiting for us. We did not know a single soul in Aus and I mean no one!

We sold everything we owned and came over with a suitcase of clothing each. Hubby landed 6 days before me and our 2 girls (aged 7 and 2 at the time). So he had 6 days to find a place for us to stay and furnish it as well. The girls and I landed the Friday and the Monday my eldest had to start school. Another headache cause our home language was Afrikaans. She had to leave all her friends and family, change countries and start a new school in a new language.. :ilikeit: . Well Monday morning off to school and by home time she did not want to go back to her old school in Cape Town! She loved it! We just moved house 3 weeks ago and she had to change schools but still sooo happy

I was a bit lost seeing as I was at home with the youngest so did not get to meet with alot of people.

But there is this wonderful saying in Afrikaans "AANHOUER WEN!!!!" :ilikeit:

A year down the line.....my youngest speaks more english than afrikaans. My eldest still has times she misses friends and family in SA but loves it here and both have picked up Aussie accents. And has formed friendships stronger than those she had in SA.

Hubby loves his job, has a great boss and people he works with. He is in IT and has always worked shifts but since here he is home more than anything else. works 2 days, 2 nights and home for 4 days. Heaven for us as a family.

Me....well I have met some wonderful people here, from Oz, UK, NZ and even SA. And if we had to leave now our hearts would be broken and I would really miss my life here.

Our whole lives have changed since arriving in Oz. Life is so much more relaxed and here in Perth is so much to so do with families. People have never treated us different because of where we come from. People have been so nice. Over Christmas...all our friends here knew we had no family in Oz and boy did they spoil my kids. Presents from everyone. They have all been wonderful.

We are loving the weather, the pace and the people.

Not once have we regretted coming to Oz or even wondered if we did the right thing.

With email, internet and webcams SA is so much closer than years ago.

I know this is a very big decision to make and only you can make that choice, BUT 2 bits of advice....

1) If you decide to go for it, you and your husband will need to be there for each other NO MATTER WHAT. My marridge feels so much stronger cause we had no choice but to lean on each other and support each other with everything we did. Things are so good that I am 5 months pregnant :)

2) Your attitude will make or break your experience here. I promise you it will. If you look for the negative, it's all you are going to see in Oz!

Enough rattling on from me now.

Sit down and decide deep in your heart what is the RIGHT choice for you and your family. Remember here are lots of us here for you.

And feel free to ask anything at anytime.

Good luck to you and your family

Thinking of you

:D

Edited by Lindy-Lee
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Karin,

The above posts are correct. I can not believe that what you mention actuallt happened, very unlikely. At the risk of sounding too hars or making general starements towards folk returning to RSA the following:

* A very small minority return, VERY small minority.

* Some return because they miss their family too much.

* Some as mentioned above can n ot get used to the fact that materialism and arrogance is frowned upon.

* Some can not handle that perhaps they have to take step back in their career and later recover again.

* Some can not adapt to the change in environment and always feel isolated.

* Some resit blending into general society and prefer to keep themselves isolated.

* Some arrive with ( dare I say it :D ) the superior attitude, know what I mean ? :ilikeit:

* And lastly, this I have seen for myself recently, people return because they can not get used to not having help around the house. :ilikeit: This family is busy returning after just 18 mnths because of mainly this reason. :ilikeit: ans the lack of materialism here, they could not afford a mansion here so they return to have one in RSA :ilikeit::) Madness....

If your husand can handle working for a boss again for a while and you can adapt to a BETTER quality of life, you will be fine. I am sure your husand can venture into business again here if he wants. Immigrating is not easy, but if you come with the right mindset and able to be absorbed into general society the average and vast majority of aussie will trat you with kindness, compassion and respect. I have not had a singel problem, in fact i fing most aussies quite laid back, friendly and compassionate.

I am of the opinion the people spreading the rumours you refer to could not make it here for some or all of the above reasons and returned tail between the legs when they were either exposed or realised it themselves.

Come over, contribute to society, be part of society and you will ensure a good future for yourselves.

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Sjoe, Ek het gedink ek sal dalk net een response kry. I am overwhelmed, i actually got a tear in my eye while going through all the mails. You guys are all Great.

I printed all the responses for my husband to read. We had a braai last night and was discussing it over a glass of wine. He is also amazed and i will be arrangeing for him to go over for a LSD trip asap. :)

Ja Marius, that was also a big concern for my husband as we are spoiled on this side with domestic help. BUT as i keep saying to everyone here in sa, i dont see it as 'THE' problem! Our children will learn to be neat and i actually could use a bit of "time out" being a housewife for a while. Luckilly we are not lazy people at all! :ilikeit:

Thank you to each one that replied, you made a difference in my life today!

I now know more that ever that we are making the right choice.

Cant wait... :D

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Karen,

You will be fine without help. It might be easy for me to say as we never had any in RSA, but I have seen many people adapt very easily.

If you have to, you can hire help here too from agencies and companies that specialise in hiring out domestic help.

Yes, it should be the last of your concerns. You will see the quality of life is better here. Not perfect, not heaven, but much better in many respects. It is a sad day that you have to leave your homeland to find that, but so it is.

Like my footnote says: "home is where the heart is". My heart is here now.... :):ilikeit:

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Dankie Marius!

Karen,

You will be fine without help. It might be easy for me to say as we never had any in RSA, but I have seen many people adapt very easily.

If you have to, you can hire help here too from agencies and companies that specialise in hiring out domestic help.

Yes, it should be the last of your concerns. You will see the quality of life is better here. Not perfect, not heaven, but much better in many respects. It is a sad day that you have to leave your homeland to find that, but so it is.

Like my footnote says: "home is where the heart is". My heart is here now.... :):ilikeit:

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It is difficult to add anything to all the above as I also agree wholeheartedly. (although it is maybe just a tad to slightly unrealistic to ‘compare’ every English speaking country by visiting them… :):D ..said tongue in cheek) but certainly do your research. There are obvious benefits to doing a LSD but it is not that essential (my opinion with my reasons). You can research LSD trips elsewhere on this forum and even on the sister sites to get insight into what migrants consider important before taking the BIG migratory step.

One thing that is apparent even in the short time that this forum has been up and running is that Family is a big issue and no trip can provide an answer to that. Nor can being in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, UK, USA or Mars do it either. YOU have to determine that. If you reason you can manage well then you’re halfway there.

It also depends on what you want in life. Many people only consider employment and real career development at that and therefore will not settle for anything ‘less’ than the US or UK, not that one cannot reach the top (if it is that important) elsewhere. For others like us we needed to leave, we had choices and we needed a change in lifestyle. We have found it.

As for domestic help, that should never be a major consideration. Like Marius we didn’t have it in SA why should we long for it here. It had absolutely nothing to do with leaving SA or fitting in here. But if you find you need it, it is available.

He (Marius) also mentioned quality of life, I say ditto, not perfect but much much better (for us).

I mentioned earlier and elsewhere that it’s all about choices for us. One advantage of coming to Aus/NZ (As this is not an NZ forum I won’t specifically promote New Zealand), is that with Aus PR one can live and work in NZ should the need arise and with NZ citizenship one can move to Australia as some of the folk on this forum have done.

So if you think about it, as I write here, without having to apply for PR/ visas we now have the CHOICE of going to South Africa, Australia, stay in New Zealand (and even move to England for that matter). It doesn’t get much better than that. Had we stayed in SA 5 odd years ago we would at some point in future (say a decade or so from then) have run out of options simply because of age.

As for the stories, yes there are many and we (incl folk on this forum) have probably heard them all by now), but I think for every one negative story there must we 20 if not many more positive ones. Work out the odds.

Finally, Good luck. :ilikeit: And remember, Generally speaking South Africans adapt extremely easy into the Australian and/or New Zealand way of life. That speaks volumes. :ilikeit:

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As for the stories, yes there are many and we (incl folk on this forum) have probably heard them all by now), but I think for every one negative story there must we 20 if not many more positive ones. Work out the odds.

Finally, Good luck. :) And remember, Generally speaking South Africans adapt extremely easy into the Australian and/or New Zealand way of life. That speaks volumes. ;)

Thanks NZHigh, I must also agree with you!

My hubbie is at last convinced :ilikeit: that we are doing the BEST thing for the kids and maybe ourselves as well, so thank you to each and every one who assisted.

Megan is 3 years old and I have now placed her in an English class and I am also speaking English at home more just to make them use to the language but I will like to revert to Afrikaans once we are there. Dean 6 years, is currently in grade 1 in a Afrikaans school, but thanks to your replies I now know to be ready to maybe put him in Year 1 again next year in Perth.

My Aunt & her hubbie moved to Perth on the 15th of Feb this year and so far she has no regrets. I also gave her this web site address for the days she might be feeling lonely.

Further more I am telling every living soul about your site because I think it is Great (as I have said a thousand times already) O ja, by the way, the ladies at the gym says hi.. :D. They are also very Supportive.

I will keep you guys updated on our progress. Got our forms from Network Migration today, and are busy with the passports. So everything is starting.............. :ilikeit:

I am currently running between two jobs at the moment so please excuse me if I don’t always reply immediately. :ilikeit:

Hubbie has his own workshop and I started my own business (3[at]1 Postal, Business & Communication Franchise) 5 months ago, and I also have a permanent job with an employment agency.

So it is not a lack of interest but a very "Hectic" schedule, and we don’t have email at home cause as you know it is very expensive and basically a luxuary here!

Guys, I hope ya all have a "Stunning" week.

Mooi Bly

Karin

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Guest Seoul Sister

Hi Karin,

I am very excited to hear about the excellent progress on your side and that you are setting the wheels in motion. Ever since your initial posting, I have been thinking about you a lot and I read a really interesting piece, which I think you will find a bit of back-up support for your decision.

At the top left of this site, there are two links, one says Canada, the other USA. If you click on USA you are linked to the www.sausa.org site, which is a sister site of the Australian one. On the USA site, go to Discussions and then look for General. *phew* :ilikeit: you still with me ? Under General you will see a posting called Scatterlings of S.Africa by Jerseygirl. This is a report on the results of an independent study done on South African Migrants. Where they have moved to, whether they will move back to SA, etc. You don't need to read all of the comments following the article as these are all just personal opinions. BUT the article is a report on FACTUAL results. I have copied a little piece in particular which I thought would be very interesting to both you and your hubby :

What is the chance that they will come back?

In general, about a third of those interviewed could realistically be expected to entertain the idea of returning to South Africa. However, the levels of availability to return to South Africa differ dramatically by country. Almost half of those living in the UK are open to return, followed by around 40% in Asia, the Middle East and other European countries. This is high compared to only about a fifth in North America and a negligible 9% in Australasian countries.

Availability to return to South Africa also differs markedly by demographics. Younger South Africans without families are more open returning than their older, more settled counterparts.

I found that very interesting ! :)

I also gave her this web site address for the days she might be feeling lonely.

Further more I am telling every living soul about your site because I think it is Great (as I have said a thousand times already) O ja, by the way, the ladies at the gym says hi.. :D. They are also very Supportive.

I am very glad that you are telling everyone about this site. The more members we get, the better the support and information exchange will be. Thanks for advertising us !! :ilikeit:

I will keep you guys updated on our progress. Got our forms from Network Migration today, and are busy with the passports. So everything is starting.............. ;)

Please do ! Also let us know when you are having a doubt day or two, as you are probably also going to still have yours and we will be ready with the Cheerleading squad and Margaritas to cheer you on. Good luck and congratulations on your decision.

Have a nice week

Seoul Sister

:ilikeit:

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi Karin!

Ek wil net ook my stuiwer in die armbeurs gooi...

We have moved to Western Australia, without ever being out of South Africa. My husband is not someone to make big decisions lightly, and comes from a conservative family. They were not very happy with our move.

We have not looked back, once. The people here are friendly and helpful, unless you want them to bend or break rules for you. They just don't do that. It takes some time to adapt to the fact that you actually HAVE TO abide by the laws here! But once you get used to it, it feels good.

My marriage is much stronger, as we have to be there for each other, as already said in the posts above. Mostly I just want to agree with everyone. It is not an easy decision to make, and not an easy one to keep either. Now that I think of it, my husband said to me this morning: "The easiest thing about this whole thing, was getting off that plane, and starting over, the hardest thing was the uncertainty, and letting go of all your things in SA" And that is it, in a nutshell.

I was completely amazed at the schooling system here. Other than in SA, it is based on the positive, not negative. My son has ADHD and is quite difficult to handle in a class situation, but the support he gets from the schooling system, and his teacher, makes me want to dance with joy. My other children are also very happy. It is just not the same..

Just hang in there. When you get here, you will ask yourself the same question everyone of us has: "How could I live like that"

I know other people that has just come over from Rustenburg to Perth. Send me an email to dreamy.101[at]hotmail.com and I could put you in touch with them.

Greetings...

Dreamy

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