Ewa talks about working to build her future in the Netherlands

Ewa, 31, from the Opole province in Poland

Works as nursery staff in an orchid nursery
via abflexkracht

Once she finished her studies, Ewa wanted nothing more than to earn a living for herself. But unfortunately, employment in Poland was very low at the time, meaning there were no jobs available. So for Ewa, the decision to move in with her older sister – who was already living and working in the Netherlands – was a logical next step.

Ewa explains, “When I arrived, I was able – via my sister – to get a job at an orchid nursery, which is how I ended up in the agricultural and horticultural sector. It wasn't a conscious decision: there was paid work available and I took it. That was more than 11 years ago,” she says with a smile. “In that time, I've gained a great deal of knowledge of and experience with growing orchids and working in a nursery.”

Making someone happy

Ewa likes her work. I'ts always nice and warm in the orchid greenhouses. Most of her tasks are easy and clean and she gets to spend the whole day among the colourful flowers. “We grow scented orchids here as well, so the place even smells good.” Ewa continues: “When I'm out and about, I always get really excited when I see orchids in someone's windowsill. I recognise the types we grow in the nursery. They're a specific kind of small-bloomed moth orchids that don't grow supported by sticks. I always think to myself, I may well have touched that very plant – and now those lovely little blooms are over there in someone's home, making them happy.”

Everybody knows one another

The nursery where she now works via abflexkracht is a small one. It employs both Polish and Dutch staff, and they get along fine. “Everybody knows one another and the communication is very clear, which helps make the workplace pleasant. Of course problems happen from time to time – but together, we always manage to resolve it.”

Business is good

Ewa has worked via a number of employment agencies, and was also employed directly by a grower for a year. She has worked for abflexkracht since 2016. “I really like working for abflexkracht. I don't have much contact with the office because there's no reason to: business is good. But I know that if there is an issue, I can always turn to my abflexkracht employee coordinator, Zbigniew. It's a comforting thought that when I need to ask for help, I can do it in Polish.”


The certainty of a steady job

One of Ewa's biggest hopes is that, when her current contract ends, she can keep right on working for abflexkracht with no interruption. “My husband and I just bought a house of our own and, in a year, our child will start school in the Netherlands. Stability is very important to me. A permanent contract, whether with the nursery or with abflexkracht, would give me that sense of certainty and peace of mind. And that is what I really want: the certainty of a steady job so that I can truly work to build my future in the Netherlands.”