Placide Bonsenge – The Congo

>

  • Share

"The fact that people here have an interest in your culture gives a sense of worth and a feeling of value within the community."

ORIGINS

I am originally from DR Congo, and came to Galway to study. After I completed my Leaving Cert in Galway Community College, I secured a place in NUI Galway, where I studied Physics with Medical Physics.

CONNECTIONS TO MY ORIGINS

In Ireland and particularly in Galway, everything is well interconnected. Most of the foreign nationals living here have their respective communities and churches, so it was easy to connect with people from my own country through the Galway Congolese Association. Every June, the association celebrates Congolese Independence Day, where some of Irish peacemaker survivors are invited to and congratulated on for the UN peacekeeping mission in DR Congo in 1960. Playing music in churches also gives me ample opportunity to meet fellow nationals.  

MAKING GALWAY HOME

From my own experience, Galway is a magnetic city. It hosts a number of diverse multicultural events to celebrate culture – cultural identity and cultural expression – which leads to a healthy and effortless coexistence. It is easy here to meet people from different countries and to grow close and stable relationships. Seeing your country flag within the Galway colour spectrum and the fact that people here have an interest in your culture gives a sense of worth and a feeling of value within the community.

Placide 7

INTERCULTURAL DIALOGUE

To know that there is a real intercultural dialogue and exchange happening here, we have to look at how socially people are integrated. This integration can be assessed at different levels such as foundation (rights and citizenship), means (employment, housing, education and health), social connections, facilitators (language, cultural knowledge and safety and stability).

“Galway society is being transformed as people and communities are continually sharing and learning from each other.”

In terms terms of multicultural events, international events organised by ‘Connect Intercultural Group’  in Doughiska is a space and movement that helps people share and learn from each other through multilingual songs, dance, food, dress and many other activities. Academically, schools and colleges host international day events where students are encouraged  to express their culture in different forms. Employment-wise, the Galwegian workplace, especially in the medical and culinary sector, is acceptably varied. Galway society is being transformed as people and communities are continually sharing and learning from each other.

 

VISIONS FOR 2020

I would love to see more projects on Multinational Youth Events here in Galway and would love to be part of.