Nurse in the Spotlight is back! This time we would like to introduce you to Daniela from Italy. She has had a lot of experience working in the service sector, having worked as a waitress, hotel desk clerk, social worker, among many other jobs. These experiences have brought her in contact with people from all walks of life, which has benefited her in her nursing career. During her studies she interned as a care assistant. It was here where she got inspired by nurses and years later, she could not let go of the thought of nursing and decided to become one herself. After her graduation she worked as a nurse in Italy for one year before deciding to gain more experience abroad. Earlier this year (in 2021) she joined the EMTG program and since May she has been working in the Netherlands. Although she has been in the Netherlands for a few weeks, she knows how to find her way around the country. Daniela is happy to catch up and talk about her journey thus far:
1. About You
What is your name and how old are you?
My name is Daniela Giunta and I am 32 years old.
Where are you from?
I am from Savoca, a village in the province of Messina, Sicily.
What university did you graduate from?
I graduated in March of 2020 from the University of Messina.
Why did you decide to become a nurse?
I have always worked in pizzerias, hotels and even in a veterinary clinic. In 2014, I got a regional diploma as a care assistant. During my internship as a care assistant, I loved the work of the nurses, I realized that it was my next step.
2. Being a Nurse in the Netherlands
Since when do you live/work in the Netherlands and where do you work?
I have been living and working in the Netherlands for one month, in Bussum (25 km from Schiphol’s airport). I work in home care for a company called “Vivium Zorggroep”.
What are some of the duties you have on a day-to-day basis?
Working in home care is dynamic and always different. I help clients in DLA (daily life activities), measure vital signs, administer therapy, perform medications, implement care plans and follow my more experienced colleagues during the implementation of health education for the client.
Part of my working day also consists of taking online courses on the guidelines of various nursing techniques.
How different is the Dutch working culture from your country?
I had previous experience in home care, so I can make a comparison with Italy. In the Netherlands nurses have more autonomy and the hierarchy is “horizontal”, meaning that all professional figures collaborate, while maintaining their role.
What do you like the most about your job?
What I like most about my current job is the fact that I am part of a “Leerteam” (learning team), which is a group of professionals, students and interns who share their knowledge and experiences.
In this way, I can compare myself with others (in a healthy way) and learn different aspects and styles of working, focusing more on the holistic view of nursing.
When and why did you decide to work in the Netherlands as a nurse?
After a year of gaining work experience in Italy, I decided I wanted more. I wanted to feel gratified by the profession I studied for and get adequate pay. In October 2020,I visited Holland for the first time and after walking through the streets of Haarlem, I realized that it gave me such a feeling of comfort, so much so that it could become my new home.
As soon as I got home, I looked for a way to reach the Netherlands through my profession, and I came across EMTG.
What is the biggest challenge(s) to work as a nurse in a foreign country? How did you overcome those challenge(s)?
The biggest challenge is the language barrier. Adding a new language, that you have learned in just three months, to your daily routine is not impossible.It does require patience, perseverance and determination for your skills to grow day by day.
What are the benefits of working abroad in your professional and personal life?
There are a lot of advantages to working in the Netherlands. I work full-time on a basis of 32 hours per week, divided into 4 days, this means that in a week I have 3 free days.
At the moment, I am working as a ‘verzorgende’(caring nurse), and I am waiting to be registered in the Dutch nursing registration (BIG-register). In my situation here, I already earn more money than I would have back home in Italy as a nurse.
Life in the Netherlands
How’s your life in the Netherlands? What do you do in your free time?
My life in the Netherlands is fulfilling. My shifts allow me to explore a different city every day. In my free time, I take long walks in the woods, go to the gym, taste Dutch specialities…
What do you like the most about the Netherlands?
I love the sense of freedom and respect that people have here in the Netherlands. No one will ever force another person to do a certain thing. It is a non-judgemental culture.
What are your future goals in the nursing field in the Netherlands?
My passions are gynaecology and emergency care (think ICU). Now that I work in home care, I have discovered that I can specialize in pain therapy and palliative care, which opened up my mind to new adventures and opportunities.
What message do you have for future nurses that are considering working abroad?
My advice for colleagues who want to undertake an experience abroad is to take courage and take a flight. Difficulties will come, but it will be worth it.
Are you a nurse and do you, like Daniela, want to work in the Netherlands to broaden your horizon and gain more experience?
Then the EMTG program might just be the right option for you to consider. You are always welcome to contact your local recruiter.
Moreover, you can look at social media pages to learn more about the EMTG program and get an insight look at what we have to offer. EMTG can help you to build your health care career in The Netherlands. It is simply the greatest country to live and work in as a nursing professional.