SOCIETY
What foreign workers think about Georgia
07 July, 2018
By 2017 there were approximately 17 330 foreigners working in Georgia. By all accounts this number is steadily increasing. It seems that the country is becoming more attractive to foreign visitors for the purpose of tourism as well as to those who wish to work here.

Workers are seeking to gain practical experience, whilst learning and exploring the traditions and culture of the country. They also contribute to its economic development.

Some workers are employed in the private sector, and some
- in the humanitarian-social fields. For example, Kidus Yoseph who is originally from Ethiopia, has been living in Georgia for about 11 months. He is working as the country director of B2C Marketing in NGO - AIESEC of Georgia.
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Kidus Yoseph (In the middle)

He said that when he had the opportunity to apply for jobs in different countries, he started researching and reading about various countries. That was when he became interested in knowing more about Georgia. He found that there were unexpected similarities in deep religious beliefs, uniqueness of culture and social values between his country and Georgia. This made a big impression on him and made him decide to come here. In addition to that, the similarities between the Georgian alphabet and the Amharic/Ge 'ez (the alphabet he uses in Ethiopia) alphabet is also worth mentioning.
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Tbilisi. Photo courtesy: eurasia.travel

His expectations of Georgia have been surpassed by the reality. He has been especially impressed by the geography and natural landscape of Georgia as well as the hospitality and welcoming nature of the Georgian people.

The things he adores the most are the friendly, humble, welcoming people and unique food.
As for the things he finds dislikable, are some cases of domestic violence and abuses that are sometimes ignored both by the police and general public.

“It shows that there are forgotten classes of the society and there are lots of issues to address in these communities and societies.”
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Kidus Yoseph with his friends

As for some of the challenges of living here he says that one of the key issue is the language barrier. Presently the level of English language spoken generally in Georgia is low, even in the service centers.

For Kidus, the places he often visits are parks, restaurants/cafes (like the Tea House), or cinemas and malls. But mostly he prefers to go out of the city and explore new places. His favorite places are Batumi, Prometheus cave and Vardzia. After leaving the country, he hopes that he will have another opportunity to visit Georgia again in the future.

Another worker at AIESEC Georgia (and who has been living here since July 2017) is Joanna Bobrowicz, from Poland who works as Member Committee Vice President of the organization. Joanna wanted to come here and work because of the attractive and natural environment and surroundings, the cultural heritage of the country and the well active operating of the organization. Since coming here, she has been impressed and even surprised by certain things.
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Joanna Bobrowicz

“I was surprised by a very creative system of throwing a coin into a box in the elevator to make it work- so smart and simple, but even before that - driving! People drive so fast and crazy here.”

The thing she likes the most is the landscape of the country.
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Joanna Bobrowicz

“It is amazing that within a few hours of travelling you can experience such diversity. Another thing - food and wine! I love Georgian cuisine although it is heavy but incredibly tasty.”

Joanna also enjoys Georgian music and dance. She also likes the fact that Georgians are very proud of their cultural and historical heritage and this is clearly seen from the way Georgian talk about their country.
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Joanna Bobrowicz

The thing she does not like in Georgia is “Georgian Maybe Time”.

“I do appreciate chilled attitude but when it comes to work - people constantly being late may be quite annoying.”

In addition, lack of care for environment and facilities for disabled people in public spaces annoys her. As for Kidus, language barriers seem to be challenging for Joanna as well.
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Joanna Bobrowicz enjoys to visit cafes in Tbilisi

In her spare time, Joanna likes going to bars like “Amodi”, which has a wonderful view and every Thursday night has live jazz music. She also said that she had visited a lot of places outside of the city, however, her city is Tbilisi. Joanna is sure that she will come back in the Country after leaving.

Visiting the country again after finishing his work here is also the plan of Clark Webber. Clark is from USA and has been working in Georgia as an English lecturer/Civil Society entrepreneur since January 2018. His main reason for coming to Georgia was to become involved in civil society activities and contribute to the development of the country in this regard. His first impression of Georgia was of a country that was very green and natural. The things that Clark likes the most are the friendly people and the relatively high amounts of social, cultural, and political freedom. However, he has certain concerns over the country's political development.
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Clark Webber

“Economic development outside of the major cities appears uneven.”

The main places that Clark frequents in Tbilisi are the Rustaveli and Fabrika areas. As for the outside the city, he has already visited Gori, Uplistsikhe, Davit Gareja, and Vardzia. Vardzia being his favorite.

His main issue about staying and working here on a longer-term basis is the salary.

“I make enough for me to live here comfortably, but I will want to build up a middle class income in the USA at some point.”

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