"MOSAIC not only gave me a chance to gain professional knowledge, you also gave me hope and confidence."

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Ana Mateescu, a producer and filmmaker from Romania, immigrated to Canada one year ago with her husband and four-year-old daughter. She lives in Vancouver.

Ana's story: "When I came here, I didn't speak English. Any word. I speak French. Now I try to improve my English when I have time.

In my country, I worked as a TV producer and filmmaker for a Romanian TV station (PROTV). I worked 14 years in the same place.

I made many documentaries: in Iraq about Abu Ghraib prison, in Holland about transsexual [people's lives] .... I love to listen to people's stories. I love to discover new things. Maybe that is the reason we came here.

When I arrived, I found my first job very fast in a call centre, because I speak French. We put our daughter in a Montessori preschool, and my husband started job-hunting.

[The] first six months were very hard .... In the morning time, I'd wake up at 5 a.m. and start to learn English. After that, I prepared [the day's food] for my daughter. After that, I went to school and worked for seven hours. I arrived home at 9 p.m. every day during those six months.

During this time, I enrolled in a mentoring program in Vancouver's MOSAIC centre and I met my first Canadians friends, Astarte Sands and Kim Trehan. Kim was my mentor and is my best friend and adviser. She inspires me, because she has courage, tenacity, and she is open-minded. She pushes me every day to apply for jobs, and when I am disappointed, she encourages me.

She recommended me for a Punjabi production company, and they hired me part-time for a documentary. I worked five months with them on a film about mixed couples. For me, it was like a dream. My English is not very good, but these people hired me for my ideas and for my spirit.

My husband took building manager courses, and we applied for this job and found a good job in very good place. Now we are building managers in The Artiste building.

Now I try to improve my English every day and I take Final Cut courses to learn [video] editing .... I have a new start here. I hope my future will be good. I am very happy, because every day I have opportunity to listen to people with good stories."

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