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Liam, Syria

Liam arrived in Sweden in September 2014 and is currently studying an international baccalaureate in Västerås. He is one of our star volunteers, patiently translating the best content of the Newbie Guide to Arabic! He is also one of the most energetic and generous person we have gotten to meet, as he is volunteering with a lot of other projects in Västerås.

How did you end up in Sweden?

I moved to Turkey in early 2013 because of the civil war in my home country, I lived there until my family and I got residence permit from the Swedish embassy in Istanbul in late 2014.

What was the hardest to adjust to in Sweden?

Finding an apartment is the hardest difficulty that I faced so far.

What do you like the best about Sweden?

I like the free educational system, the country´s position of humanitarian issues, the Swedish nature and the country´s care of the environment.

What Swedish word is your favourite?

Hejsan!

What do you find strange about Swedes?

When they avoid talking to others, and the high numbers of pregnant-teenagers.

What do you like about Swedes?

They are very nice and kind people and they respect the individuality and uniqueness of each and every person.

What do you miss the most?

Old markets in old cities filled with the smell of olive oil, flowers, spices…And seeing my big family all gathered!

What do you find strange about the Swedish culture?

The two-weeks big celebration for new graduated high school students.

Do you have an anecdote about something funny that happened during your first time?

My second day in Sweden I went to a shopping mall in Göteborg, and there I found a small ice-cream and yogurt store with two big machines and lots of fruits, chocolates and many other things that one can add to his/her yogurt/ice-cream. I filled a small box with ice cream and I added a lot of fruits and chocolates assuming that there is a fixed price for the box whatever you fill in it.

I was shocked when they weighted my box at the casher and I ended up paying 600kr.