The event was declared open with a keynote speech by ICAN President Mr. Kevin C.M. Osuji




The purpose of the event can be described in two segements.

  1. The Silver Jubilee: This is a major milestone not only FOR a festivity but also a solemn occasion to pause and reflect at this 25year journey. It is also a moment to look ahead at the mountains we must still climb. This was marked with a seminar on topics that dealt on very important contemporary issues that affect us as immigrants to The Netherlands.
    1. i)Migration, Integration and Human Development. This topic was presented bie Mrs. Patience Mayaki-vd Horst. She was a candidate fo the European Parliament under the Christian Unie.


Mrs. Patience Mayaki-vd Horst.

The Human Development Index (HDI) ranks the Netherlands in the fifth place in the 2015 Human Development Report. That's a big score, out of 188 countries and territories. Healthy life, access to knowledge and a decent standard of living are the three main indicators. How is integration in the Netherlands and are the new comers benefitting from the Dutch human development policies?


ii) Human – A Modern Form Of Slavery: presented by Rev. Dr. Chima Anyaeze.

We need to be vigilant of a form of modern slavery that is embedded in human trafficking. Oftentimes when we hear human trafficking we always consider the phonomen in its 3-phase track of recruitment, harbouring and transporation of the victims to destinations. But we need to be wary of its extended forms such as slavery. Due to the taboos and oaths undertaken at the starting point, the victims languish for years, at the end point, in sexual exploitation, forced labour, debt bondage, domestic servitude, criminal activities, child labour, child sexual exploitation, forced and early marriage. What contributions can we make on the counter.

Rev. Dr. Chima Anyaeze

iii) Rotterdam – Open & Inclusive

After the near-complete destruction of the city centre in the World War II, Rotterdam is famous due to many things such as the Maas, Erasmus University, Erasmus bridge, but also the home of, the largest port in the world. These and other things have earned Rotterdam the nicknames such as the "Gateway to Europe" and "Gateway to the World. Today Rotterdam is home to multiple nationalities, ethnicities and groups with various cultural backrounds.

It is on this background that we look at Rotterdam as an open and inclusive society.

Question:Has Rotterdam’s openness and inclusiveness been sustained to emabrace so many other peoples, lifestyles, beliefs and orientations?

Mevrouw Martha Louis of Gemeente Rotterdam sitting with Patricia Ooms of Dona Daria


Questions Session


The Filipino Community Cultural Group displaying at the end of the seminar

SEGMENT 2: The Igbo New Yam Festival – An Igbo Annual Event

The second part of the event was the NEW YAM FESTIVAL proper, As the seminar section was coming to a conclusion, the Igbo were trooping in with their families, their friends and their well-wishers. They arrive in their colourful traditional attires.

ICAN invited groups from Belgium and Amsterdam. Each of the groups came with not less than 30 members.

The total number of attendants to the two (2) events should be between eight hundred and a thousand people. The Humanitas long hall was filled up and by 4 pm, parking had become a big problem; people were forced to park a long way away from the event venue. At 6pm, people were still trooping in; some had driven more than one hour to attend the event


To the Igbo yam is more than food, in the traditional Igbo society it is a standard measurement of one’s wealth. For a man’s wealth is being measured by the number of yam barns he owns. Equally, yam plays a vital role in Igbo social life such as in marriages, child birth, etc.

The Igbos believe that yam is not something that can just be cultivated and consumed without any formality or ceremony. Igbos believe that certain ceremonies and rituals have to be performed to thank God and in His honour before the newly harvested yam can be eaten.

The Igbos are proud of and known for their rich cultural heritage. Among it the New Yam Festival – Iri ji ohuu ranks highly and is an important and indispensable tradition in Igboland. It dates back all the way to our far ancestors and is still practiced today.

In the New Yam Festival the Igbos thank God for protecting them from the planting to the harvesting season. As the New Yam Festival marks the beginning of the yam harvest, it is also a time for praying for a plentiful crop.

In the festival the new yam is welcomed into the homes and pots of the people. Above all the new yam is being formally presented to the “God of the Yam” who is called “Njoku or Ajokujii”.

The yam festival is celebrated yearly and is a must before the new yam can be prepared in many different delicious recipes and be consumed. People believe that if they fail to honour the festival the omission may lead to a poor harvest or even natural disaster which in turn will lead to famine striking the whole land and its people.

Since the belief in the ancestors is central in Igbo religion and philosophy, this festival marks an opportunity for every family to thank their ancestors for their protection and assistance during the planting season and ask for more blessings and protection in the future. The festival is an arena through which peace and understanding is fostered in Igbo families. Families visit each other in this time of festivity and exchange gifts.

At the same time it is a time for reconciliation. Those who are quarrelling will usually try to make peace in this period. Those who have offended the God of Yam in one way or the other will use this time to ask for forgiveness and will appease the god.

The New Yam Festival is annually performed in the eighth month of the Igbo calendar and there are elaborate preparations before the actual event. The day of the occasion is a joyous and happy day in all areas of Igboland and all over the world wherever Igbos live and reside and is marked by colourful cultural dance performances to please the God of Yam.

On this day the head of the family assisted by the elders will perform all the rituals and ceremonies. Once he has formally presented the new yam to the God of the Yam – Njoku of Ajokuji and asked for his permission to eat the new yam, the yam is declared fit and good for consumption.

A dish of roasted new yam is prepared for and served to the elders. The first yam is prepared in many different forms and dishes and the day is a day of happy yam consumption for everyone.

ICAN had invited groups of from Belgium and Amsterdam. Each of the groups came with not less than 30 members. The total number of attendants to the events should be between eight hundred. The Humanitas long Hall was filled up and by 4 pm, parking had become a big problem; people were forced to park a long way away from the event venue. Even by 6 pm, people were still trooping in; some had driven more than one hour to attend the event.



As is customary in Igbo culture, the Kola Nut is the first thing that is presented to a guest(s) in every Igbo gathering. Óji is used to settle disputes between siblings or neighbors, it is served at marriages and burials, however, the rhetoric rites are not performed at burial. ICAN being an Igbo cultural organisation preformed that tradition of kola nuts imported from Igboland

The breaking, blessing and sharing of Óji is a wonderful tradition which transcends from our progenitors. Óji is a very sacrosanct nut, it brings a community together. Its supremacy brings harmony, unity, peace, prosperity, reproduction and progress amongst those who participate in the blessing and sharing of kola nut.



As is customary in Igbo culture, the wife at home presents to the male member of te family usually her husband the Kola Nut. Here ICAN women perform that function of the wife at home of the traditional pressentation of kola nuts as can be seen in pictures to the husbands to be offered to ICAN guests. The husband uses the Kola Nut to welcome the guests into the home.

The women may make other gestures symbolic of welcome such as the presentation of water, food accordingly.

It is imperative to note that this does not represent any discriminatory intentions or a diminished position of women in society. It is a cultural expression reserved to the male gender just as other expressions are reserved for women.

Presentation of Kola Nut.

It is the onus of an elderly man , Chief Lambert Igbonugo from the host family, in this case ICAN to present kola nut to our guests

When kola nut is presented to guests, an elderly man from the guest family would touch the kola nut and say to the host "Òji eze nò eze na aka", this means that the guest have seen the kola which has been presented to them and that the host should proceed to break and bless the kola. The elderly man could proceed to break the kola nut himself or designate the task to a younger man from his family. Where someone other than the elder himself broke the kola nut, it is later passed on to the elderly man for prayers and or blessings.

ICAN President, Mr. Kevin C.M. Osuji Presents Kola Nuts To ICAN Elder – Chief Lambert Igbonugo

Blessing Of Kola Nuts

It is the Igbo's belief that Oji does not speak or understand English, hence the dictum "Oji anaghi anu bekee". The elder then blessed the kola in Igbo lingua franca,offerd a piece of the kola nut to ancestral spirits and deities and takes a piece himself; this can be eaten on its own or served with Okwa Ose (peppered butter paste) or alligator pepper before the rest of the Kola nut is passed round to others present. This act means that the host presents the kola nut with a clean heart and a good


The myth and custom of kola nut is one of the sacred tradition transcended from our great ancestors and which will not be obliterated. Its presence not only permeates and brings unity in the lives of those who partake in it, it also embrace an aura of symbolism which depicts happiness, life band peace.


Our guests included the Embassy Of Nigeria, The Hague and various Igbo Cultural Groups guests. This included:

-       The Ambassador Of Nigeria, To The Netherlands, His Excellency Orji N. Ngofa

-       Umuada Igbo (Igbo daughters) , Amsterdam

-       Umuada Igbo (Igbo daughters), Belgium

-       Igbo Council of Chiefs, Antwerp

-       Idemili Progressive Union, Amsterdam with masquerade group

-       Aguata

-       Igbo Union, Belgium

The Nigeria Ambasaador to The Netherlands who could not attend the event due to diplomatic duties in Asia delegated the Minister, Mr Alex Ebimiebo to represent him. Mr. Ebimiebo delivered a goodwill message of support from the Nigerian Ambassador.







The day was also marked bie Igbo masquerade displays - the Odogwu masquerade from Amsterdam and the ICAN e were also masquerade dance displays by the ICA masquerade group and te Idemili Progressive Union masquerade group from Amsterdam


ICAN SEMINAR “IGBO WOMEN & CHILDREN” 28th JUNE 2014 Introduction Speech By I.C.A.N. NL seminar committee chairman Chief K.I. Onyenze

I welcome you all on behalf of Igbo Cultural Association of Nigeria the Netherlands (I.C.A.N. NL). One thing commonly known about Igbo people is that igbo people are “travellers” Said in Igbo: “Igbo bu ndi ije, onye ije enweghi iro” . Said in Dutch: “Igbo mensen zijn reizigers”.
On January 21st 2012. The UNESCO predicted that the igbo language might become extinct in the next 50 years. This prediction, is a warning for all Igbo people from scholars, professors, traditional leaders to politicians. We all must take this threat very seriously, because a language is an ethnic identity, any tribe that loses its language has lost its identity and pride.

It is said by the Chinese that, “if you want to colonise a man for life, teach him your language”.

There are available evidence to justify UNESCO's prediction, the extinction of the Igbo language and Igbo Culture. Igbo people travel in large numbers out of their places of origin hometowns, because Igbo people believe that, to become successful in life, an Igbo needs to move away from his/her village to settle and make a living. Some relocate not far from Igboland for instance, to Onitsha, Asaba, Nnewi, Aba, Enugu, Owerri, Okigwe, Abakaliki, Umuahia, the largest commercial cities of Igboland to do business, to seek for employment or to acquire higher

education. Others migrate to other parts of Nigeria such as Abuja, Lagos, Benin, Port Harcourt. Another group travels out of the country to United States of America, Europe and Asia. Some say that you can find an Igboman or woman in allmost every part of the world.

Those of us who have lived outside Igboland for a long time tend to forget important aspects of our culture. Also women from other cultures married Igbo men, thanks to globalization which made intercultural marriages possible. Our (foreign) wives and children born far away from the Igbo homeland do not always have the opportunity to identify themselves with Igbo customs, traditions and the Igbo language.

Parents who should teach their children Igbo language, especially those without a university education, discouraging their children from speaking Igbo language believing that it will retard or negatively affect their learning at school. English is an “international language” afterall. So they feel that learning how to speak and write good English will benefit their children more. What these parents forgot is that young children can learn many languages without mixing them up.

Every European country has its own language and that no other languages are superior to its own. “Ofe Nnem siri, di uto karisia ofe Nne ndiozo” meaning; “The soup made by my mother, is more delicious than other mother's soup” , “De soep die mijn moeder heeft gemaakt, smaakt lekkerder dan die van andere moeders”.

European children are taught other languages in school, so that they can communicate with their neighbours in Dutch, German, English, French, Spanish, etc. Therefore Igbo parents should insist on teaching Igbo to their children at home, because Igbo is not among the languages children learn at school. Try to travel with the family to your hometowns during holidays to get in touch with the culture of our people.

Today, during this seminar, you will have the opportunity to familiarize with Igbo custom and tradition which reflects on the position of women in Igboland. What is the position of an Igbo woman within the framework of Igbo culture? What is her role as a woman in her family? What is her role as a wife to her husband? Or as a mother to her children? Which protection does she enjoy and how is she protected in the community?

Integration of Igbo women in the Dutch custom and system

Igbo sina, “Okuko gara mba, na egi ofu ukwu eguzoro, Omatacha ala, owedata ukwuya nke ozo” “Een kip die in een nieuw terrein beland, staat altijd met een been op de grond, als de kip het nieuwe terrein heeft verkend, doet hij zijn andere been naar beneden” When one arrives in a new country, the first thing he or she will notice is the difference in language and custom. To succeed, one must speak the language to adjust to the new environment and the foreign system. These constitutes challenges, such as differences in communication, labour market and education system.. These challenges pose some difficulties due to the differences. In Nigeria the education system follows the British pattern, which is different from the Dutch education system. To overcome them, you must put in extra time to get all the right information.

Igbo sina “Anaghi agba aka, ahu nwata eze” “Degene die het eerste melktandje ziet, moet iets offeren” How well are you integrated into the Dutch system? Are you aware of the social activities going on in your neighborhood? How well do you command the Dutch language? Are you familiar with the social facilities and amenities made available by the municipal council for your integration? Do you know how or where to go for all your issues?

“To be forewarned, is to be forearmed” ,“Een gewaarschuwd mens telt voor twee” zeggen ze. “Ukpara okpoko gburu, nti chiri ya”. This seminar is designed to address some of the social issues and answer some of the questions which Igbo people are confronted with in the Netherlands.We sincerely believe that, this seminar will demonstrate our willingness to promote our culture in the Netherlands, contribute towards its conservation, ensure the continuity of igbo language by passing on the baton to the new generation of Igbo youths in the Netherlands.

Encourage our members to improve their life standard and offer assistance where necessary. Why? because I.C.A.N. NL is an organization that cares for its members, I.C.A.N. NL took it as a responsibility to contribute in its own way to the welfare of Igbo people in the Netherlands. Therefore, I beg you all to give the speakers your listening ears, the message, information in their speech could make a difference in your lives tomorrow.

Thank you all for listening.
God bless Nigeria, God bless Ndi-Igbo, God bless Netherlands, long live I.C.A.N. NL. Chief Kelvin Ikechi. Onyenze,


Introduction to Igbo Culture Delivered
by Okere Anthony( researcher/writer ) Humanity Journals contact; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Culture is an intellectual achievements of a civilization. Perpetuation of these cultural experiences culminating from attempts to subdue challenges arising from our surroundings through values, opinions, belief, customs, rites, environment, death, birth, etc describes tradition of people. Igbo people of Igboland is located in the east of Nigeria, West Africa. And their culture is one of the oldest culture in the sub-saharan Africa. Though for decades it has continued to suffer from decay, cultural erosion, ignorance and religio-crazy which in itself is a prediction of cultural destitution if unchecked.

Igbo culture in our every day lives in areas as

Birth, Death, Law, Land, Land Ownership and Inheritance, Masquerade, Huwelijk, Family ties and Lineage, Igbo Calendar and Igbo Numeration, Annual Festivals, Taboo and Abominable acts, Kola nut, Sacred Animals, Signs and symbolical communication, Idiomatic expressions, Dialects, Womanhood, Manhood, Umuada and Anutara -di,
Salutation, Recognition and titles, etc were researched on and extensively discussed by Researcher and Creative Writer Anthony Okere (Humanity Journals)contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further information.

Culture as a human developmental factor

Over the long course of human history, culture has always been the human strategy for survival and success. Culture is largely a matter of habit, our actions and choices, our ways and responses to life. Igbo people are well known for their trade and commercial successes. There is this culture of inter-dependence and social responsibility. Individual and communities come together to form associations, unions and clubs to mobilize energy for the development of their communities and interests. Through such programs, schools, hospitals, roads, rural electrification, social centers, and drinking water were made possible especially after the war with no government presence or assistance.

A culture of working together and sharing success together.
Friends or relatives develop agreements to assist one another or work for a period of time so as to be assisted to get established. In this way many who are NOT able to attend school were made very relevant and successful in the society, as they opted to learn a particular trade
There are many instances of cultures that have enhanced our economic and social opportunity, i.e. , keeping timet (promptness), integrity etc. However some cultures will be considered as retro- progressive in nature.These includes the culture of; Tribal Marks, Some taboos, immoderate tattoo, Outcasts, Social discrimination (OSU) Body Piercing and Slavery.

Since culture as a social element is a creature of human and animal actions aimed at proffering solutions to challenges of the age. The more civilized and positive our choices and actions become, the more a culture that is more humane and development supportive we have.
For instance, OSU describes a person, whose descendants date back to hundreds of years sought protection and refuge in gods and Shrines in an age where there is no law enforcing institution. Fear of being sold as a slave or being taken as war prisoner prompted many to evolve strategy for

In today ́s modern world, in some isolated communities and instances in Igboland, people are still being discriminated on the bases of what can be described as the choices and actions of their distant lineage in dark ages in the name of culture, tradition or religion, a sorry story of social backwardness and ignorance with high negative economic consequences Piercing, body Marks and modes of dressings have proved to constitute social cum economic constraints especially when unguardedly employed.

Gender issues in Igbo Culture
The contents of gender characterization may differ across cultures and even within a culture. Fundamentally, women and have a well defined roles in an ideal Igbo culture and society. Umuada and Anutara di which are old as Igbo history serves as effective platform to actively participate in the society building. Some of the women activities have been explored in a chapter called womanhood(Humanity Journal )This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Igbo society is principally based on lineage and kindred, Children that perpetuates the lineage is the dream come-true for many. Children are always celebrated but for the challenges of poverty. They are seen as the future of the family and the larger society. There are more educated women than men in Igboland, which is an indication that there is no real gender kwestie. Children raised with Igbo cultural values tend to develop extra ability to decode symbolical communication. Cultural characterization such as: kneeling down, Finger whistle, Mouth whistle, Bowing, can be deployed effectively by women, children and ALL to evoke feelings and sentiments during conversations. I greet all women present with their children, all ICAN members and guests for this opportunity. Greetings

Mazi O . Anthony (Researcher/Writer) Humanity Journals


My name is Sandra Taylord , wife, mother of 4, mentor, motivational speaker, event coordinator, Fashion judge, speak 7 languages, and some few Igbo words, Born in Haiti, grew up in New York City in the USA.

I am honoured, to be part of today’s great event organized by I.C.A.N. NL, to talk about integration. This falls within my area of interest largely because I have travelled and lived in many European countries including the Caribbean, with a great passion for bringing people together, and zeal in uplifting and, encouraging them to move forward in a positive manner in their everyday life. Integration basically, is the act of bringing people with different racial and ethnic backgrounds into one unrestricted and equal society. This indeed is applicable to people who come to the Netherlands to live or study as the case maybe. In this regard, if one chooses to come to the Netherlands, it is absolutely imperative to be mindful of the fact that, there are some unavoidable challenges bound to be encountered and as such, must be willing and without any equivocations, to embrace and confront these challenges with vigour . This will not only ensure quick adaptation, but also will help one move on with life in their new-found country, and make it a “home away from home”.

Take language for instance as one of the challenges, for any immigrant to function efficiently in the Netherlands, such person must learn how to speak the Dutch language. It will not only be helpful in your everyday life, but will also play an important role in socializing with other folks. Even when it’s obvious that a reasonable percentage of Dutch people speak decent English, its important for every immigrant to constantly engage in conversation with the Dutch language, continue to watch Nederland TV channels ,Endeavour to obtain your inburgeren courses exams. Information regarding this could be obtained in the city hall (Gemeente).

For some settlers in the Netherlands, the integration process commenced even in their countries of origin, hence they need an authorization temporary stay(MVV) to be able to travel to the Netherlands. To obtain this document, such individuals must pass the civic integration exams abroad. Integration is also about changing our personal mentalities , for example the idea that some people should dwell in the illusion of “what the country can do for them instead of the dynamics of what they can do for the country”. Same principle of positive mind-set should also be extended to our countries of origin. Let us share with them our strength and weaknesses, especially those good things we have been able to learn in the Netherlands.

Those of us who have the opportunity of having children here in this country, especially those whose kids are in school , should find time to engage with their teachers, share with them your ideas and thoughts.
Most importantly, plant positive seeds in the mind and heart of your child by teaching them how to be respectful to other people. “ What you put in, you take out”. It is a philosophy of life. In this country, ‘every door is a door of opportunity’, all we need do is to make wise choices, choices based on principle that leads to character . By so doing, we have not only shown the strengths of our wisdom, but also succeeded in projecting the image of our countries of origin.

Thank you for listening .
God Bless the I.C.A.N, God Bless the Igbo people
God bless this beautiful country (Holland) As we can proudly call it our home.


Women & Children Seminar 2014: My name is Alberta Wilson, wife of Emmamnuel Ezeani PRO I.C.A.N. NL. A proud mother of 2 children.

I have a degree in management. I am presently working as a chief accountant in a shipping company and also exercising my passion @ Albertina cakes; which is catering & decorating. You name and i make it. I am honoured to be one of the guest speakers this evening, hope you all enjoy.

General overview

Compulsory education in the Netherlands starts at the age of five, although in practice, most schools accept children from the age of four. From the age of sixteen there is a partial compulsory education ; meaning a pupil must attend some form of education for at least two days a week. Compulsory education ends for pupils at the age of eighteen or when they have completed a degree.
Public schools, special schools and religious schools are government financed. All schools receive equal financial support from the government if certain criteria’s are met. Although they are officially free of charge, these schools may ask for a parental contribution (ouderbijdrage). Private schools rely on their own funds, but they are highly uncommon in the Netherlands.
Public schools are controlled by local governments. Special schools are controlled by a school board and are typically based on a particular religion; those that assume equality between religions are known as general-special schools. These differences are present in all levels of education.

A special school can reject applications of pupils whose parents or caretakers disagree with the school's educational philosophy, but this is uncommon. In practice, there is little difference be- tween special schools and public schools, except in traditionally religious areas. All school types (public, special and private) are under the jurisdiction of a government body called Inspectie van het Onderwijs (Inspection of Education) that can demand a school to change its educational poli- cy and quality at the risk of closure.

Elementary school

Between the ages of four to twelve, children attend elementary school (basisschool). This school has eight grades, called group 1 through groep 8. School attendance is not compulsory until group 2 (at age five), but almost all children commence school at age four (in group 1). Groups 1 and 2 is kindergarten ( "toddler's school”).From group 3 upward children learn how to read, write and do arithmetics. Most schools teach English in groups 7 and 8, but some start as early as group 4. In group 8 majority of schools administer an aptitude test called the Cito & Entré Eindtoets Basisonderwijs, developed by the Centraal instituut voor toetsontwikkeling (Central Institute for Test Development), which is designed to recommend the type of secondary education best suited for a pupil.

In recent years, this test has gained authority, but the recommendation of the group 8 teacher along with the opinion of the pupil and its parents remain a crucial factor in choosing the right form of secondary education. Tip of advice: group 7 is also a very challenging year. The Cito & Entré test is also administer in group 7. Realistically speaking as from Group 7 your child knows his or her Faith. Group 8 is more of a repetition year. Before starting elementary school i recommence you parents to visit the website of Inspectie van het onderwijs. Studying the history of the school and knowing the religion of the school is very important. That website will confirm if the elementary school you have chosen is up to it’s standards in education or not.

High school

After attending elementary education, children (by that time usually 12 years old) go directly to high school (voortgezet onderwijs). Informed by the advice of the elementary school and the results of the Cito test, a choice is made by the pupil and its parents.

When it is not clear which type of secondary education best suits a pupil, or if the parents insist their child can handle a higher level of education than what was recommended to them, there is an orientation year to determine this. At the end of the year, the pupil will continue in the normal curriculum of level. Since the Dutch educational system does not have middle schools or junior high schools, the first year of all levels in Dutch high schools is referred to as the brugklas. The brugklas connects the elementary school system to the secondary education system.

During this year, pupils will gradually learn to cope with the differences between school systems, such as dealing with an increased personal responsibility.

Selective secondary education

Secondary education, which begins at the age of 12 and is compulsory until the age of 18, is offered at several levels. Pupils are enrolled according to their ability. When your child /children finish the secondary level they will hopefully continue to higher education. Higher education in the Netherlands is offered in two types of institutions: hogescholen and universities.

Why daycare is important

Despite the fact that it is costly but you can apply for Financial assistance from the belastingdienst. Daycare teachers are all gediplomeerd they help learn your child how to comminicate & socialise with other children. Why daycare is also very important they speak dutch language with the children. Some of us parents just speak our native language at home. A child who does not speak the dutch language at home or didn’t attend daycare is 1500 words backwards comparing to a child who attended daycare and practise the dutch language at home.

Assisting & motivation

Your child/children starts elementory school and some parents think that it is the responsability / duty of the teacher to educate that child.”WRONG” As parents that is your respondsability techers just gaves us a helping hand. If you want your child to score well when it is time for ENTRÉ & CITO Test in group 7 & 8 then it is your duty to assist your children. It is very important to motivate your children. Yes i understand that sometimes you might be tired from a long day work are tired from running behind the younger ones, just try and make that free time. Sometimes they don’t need our full attention but just a listening ear and that is called one one attention.


Here in the Nederlands there are organization where u can visit for assistance. Some children loves sports and some loves to play an instrument. I admit these are 2 expensive hobbies. But unfortunately some parents cannot afford it because of one reason or the other. I am here to enlighten you that there are organisation who can assist for example “jeugd culture fonds” it is an organization that can assist in paying for the fee for that instrument class or sport class for the whole year, but u need the assistance of a school social worker. As i said before the ouderbijdarge that we parents pay elementary schools is not compulsary. But when your child reach the age to go to middlebaar onderwijs the expenses increases. Books & school fee have to be paid for etc. Nevertheless there are also organisations to ask for assistance for the paying of the school books & school fee etc. The only trick in the game is that the organizations always look at the parents income. If both parents are working your request can be denied or minumized and parents who are receiving a minimum loon can quiker be qualified. During highschool and Universaty you can apply for DUO (studyfinance) and when receiving DUO your child is allowed to have a bijbaan. Your child can apply for this fund as from the age of 18 until age 30. Four years after graduating or not your child will start paying back the studyfinance fund if she or he had received it.

I would like to thank the listening ears and i hope that my information is usefull in any sort of form & manner.


My name is Stephanie Onyenze and I am a student at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam.

I study International Business Administration. As one of the speakers during this seminar I am going to talk about Higher Education in the Netherlands.


When choosing a course two questions arise: what to study and at which university. In secondary school every student has to choose an area of expertise. This choose determines what study your child can do. For instance if your child picked an Economy & Maatschappij profile, it cannot do medicine. Since Economy is not in line with medical school. However if your child picked Natuur & Gezondheid it is eligible to go to medicine school. It is important to let your child do what they want to study. No one wants to be trapped in a profession he or she dislikes or was forced into. Next to lawyer, doctor, engineer and accountant there are other options. Most of Nigerian parents only know these main courses, but do not understand that there is more. If you look in terms of the ease to find a job dentist, pharmaceutics science, medicine and electro technics score best (Study & Werk, 2013) . Since there is a shortage in the market for these people. Looking in term of salary dentist, econometrics, fiscal economy, fiscal law and medicine score highest ( Elsevier). These are factors one should consider when choosing a profession. No one wants to end up jobless after investing much money in their education.

After you have chosen a course it is now important to look which university provide the best education. Rankings show that TU Delft is the best university to go to for a technical study. Leiden is the best when studying law and Erasmus is best for economic and financial studies like business and fiscal law.


Because your child is eligible to do a course does not mean he or she will get to do it. Not all studies have an “open-door” policy. There are two other options that make it harder to enter university. The first one is “Selectie aan de Poort”. This means that the study pick their students based on a procedure. My course IBA was a “selectie aan de Poort” study. I had to write a motivation letter, had to pass math with an average of 7 or higher and I needed and average of 7 and higher. Studies do this if there is a high demand for students to do the course. Last year 1339 students applied for the IBA course, but only 400 got chosen. In order to pick the pest student these procedures are required.

Another option is Numerus Fixus which can be classified in two classes. This method is mostly used for studies that can accept a big number of students based on a fixed number. These studies do this to not overcrowd the job market with a specific profession. Law and medicine tend to do this. The first way is with a random draw. Students with a higher average will have a higher probability to get chosen for this course. Another way is with the “decentrale loting”. This looks a lot like the “Selectie aan de poort”, but it gives preferred spots to outstanding students from the total number of admissions. For instance if medicine has an occupancy of 1200 students 80% of the students will be chosen by the “decentrale”. The remaining part will be picked using a random draw. “Decentrale” is becoming more and more important, but not all students are eligible to do it. There are certain criteria. To stay in the example of medicine, students need to have done a 2 year internship at a healthcare institute and extracurricular activities. They need to write a motivation letter, then go on an interview and then do a pre-test. If your child has done this successfully it will be secured of a spot.

Payment & Enrolment

Congratulations your child got in to university! Now a considerable amount of paperwork has to be done. First he or she has to apply for a DigID. This is an electronic identity that gives your child excess to all government sites. With this it can apply for a student loan at DUO. First this loan was a gift, but anno 2014 it has changed into a loan. So everything what your child lends has to be paid back to the government with an interest. After your child finishes his or hers study and started working. To DUO a copy of the high school diploma has to be send, so the educational institute can verify if your child passed or not. Studielink is a site where the enrolment takes place. It gives you an overview of the steps that need to be taken when applying for a course. It also give you the option to do monthly payment for your study.

Student life

Student time has been said to be the best time in one’s life. It is key to make the most out of it not only to meet new people, but to gain certain advantages that can help you in the future. There are many student associations and study associations. Student associations are mostly for fun, meeting new people and parties. They have initiations. Do not confuse them with the Nigerian colts, because student association are useful. They help your child built a network. Many politicians and powerful business men were in student associations like ex-minister Balkenende. These people can be a valuable asset later when looking for a job. Study associations are study related. They organize parties, study trips and study related activities. Being an active member at these associations look good on one’s resume. Being a passive member is also beneficial for deduction on books and other study material. Parents should not interfere in this part of a child life. Help and advice is good, but control and rigidities can work against them. Let your child free and let them explore the student life. Step in when it is going wrong, but do not set the path that your child needs to go. You can give them the bricks, but let them build the house!
I hope this was helpful!

Kind regards,
 Stephanie Onyenze


Hallo, goedemiddag, my name is Emmeke Boot.
 I am the owner of Delken&Boot language training school Rotterdam.

My business associate is Ellis Delken whose husband Francis Agu is one of your members. Unfortunately they are not able to be with us today because of the fact that they are on Holiday in Denmark. Delken&Boot is a language training school for Dutch as a second language. We organize courses from the Netherlands all over the world. By skype, by face to face lessons, individual and in group training with qualified teachers but with the help of volunteers from Nigerian people who are very well integrated in the Netherlands.
Integration is the keyword. Integration starts by learning our language and knowing more about traditions and culture. From Delken&Boot’s experience as a language bureau, the ignorance of Dutch language poses a great problem for foreigners such as Nigerian women and children in issues like child upbringing, communication, finding job and schooling in the Netherlands. The idea here is to explain to you certain ways how these problems occur, and to offer possible

You can ask yourselves certain questions: have you really integrated in the Dutch society? What are the obstacles? How many of you can speak Dutch sufficient enough to excel in the labor market? Have you utilised the opportunity provided by an integration course or so called inburgeringscursus? The inburgeringscursus is an obligate course for people who want to live in the Netherlands. You have to do an exam in speaking, writing, reading and listening, but you also need knowledge of the Dutch society like History, school system, daily life and how to find a job in the Netherlands. Most of the exams are at the computer. So you need computer skills as well. The level of speaking is the A2 level. Maybe many of you did this already. But you need more. More language to get to a higher level to have a better position on the labour market.

The learning of the new language depends on four basic factors: motivation (e.g. the prospect of increased income), access (e.g. opportunities for contact or availability of courses), skills (e.g. general intelligence or particular ability to learn languages) and the costs associated with learning (e.g. time involved, pressure to assimilate). Motivation: your motivation can be the upbringing of your children in the Dutch society. Your children go to the Dutch primary and the secondary school. They will study here and have Dutch friends who will come to your place. They want to do iceskating By the way can you answer these questions about the 3 most important sportsin the Netherlands? Can you answer the question about the most important Holidays (feesten) voor children? Sinterklaas, Verjaardagen or celebrating Birth with this special treats
(beschuit met muisjes)

Another motivation to learn the language can be participation : labour or work as a volunteer at the school from your children. Meaningfull work!! You are needed at the primaryschool basisschool !! But also to talk with the teacher and to support your childeren. The acces to courses can be very easy. There are many possibilities. After a free intake at your house we will talk about these possibilities, and the learning programma and the budget Skills: intelligence we will determine your skills if you are a fast learner, or do you need more time.

Costs: A language school with the Blik op werk certificate like Delken&Boot allows you to get a loan from the Government. Learning Dutch must be fun. Learning in a group is fun. You will make friends, you will learn everday communication in particular in the context of communication and the labour market. Together you can build a network, wich is so important.

Language is the key to integration. 3 keys words that start with the letter G. There is a lot of G in our language (see power point) Let us try some exercises TPR Total physical response (power point) In summary, language is significant in the integration of foreigners into host societies, and plays a particularly significant role in the process of individual and societal integration.

I hope that by gathering here today we can agree on one thing - language is the key to integration. For that reason you have to take concrete steps towards improving your integration in the Netherlands. Delken & Boot is open to more information regarding inburgering, so you can always contact us.

Ellis Delken and Emmeke Boot
Delken & Boot-interactieve taalprojecten Rotterdam/ / 003110-422 1481