Advice and Support for South Africans Immigrating to New Zealand

South Africans Going To New Zealand

Author Topic: A Change in Mindset  (Read 20589 times)

Offline Snoozy

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #90 on: August 03, 2010, 09:01:16 am »
Hey Ryanrich

Thanks for the post, but as far as I recall, you went back to SA from NZ? Are you planning to leave again, or what do you base your staying on in SA?

Would just be very interested to know...

Offline ryanrich

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #91 on: August 03, 2010, 10:10:30 am »
Came back temporarily based on some personal and family issues. My mindset and feelings never changed... :)

To be honest I'm really happy with the whole experience because I learnt SO much from it, and discovered that I was naive about many things as well. Live and learn I say... ;)

I still do like to see the positives in SA, because there are positives as well, I mean it's not all doom and gloom in absolutely everything, but as I grow I become more and more aware of the realities and ever more worried about the future.

Will officially be back in NZ next month. :yippee:

SA Going to NZ Advice Forum

Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #91 on: August 03, 2010, 10:10:30 am »

Offline frodo/maya

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #92 on: August 03, 2010, 11:49:59 am »
See you way down under next month Ryanrich  :clap:

Offline ryanrich

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #93 on: August 03, 2010, 12:30:35 pm »
See you way down under next month Ryanrich  :clap:

Indeed! :D

Less than 3 weeks to your departure, must be getting nervous/excited now! Hope the trip goes well!

Offline Nolan

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #94 on: August 03, 2010, 08:45:36 pm »
:clap: glad you coming back mate O0

Offline ryanrich

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #95 on: August 04, 2010, 06:57:30 am »
Thanks much, can't wait! :)

Offline juby

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #96 on: August 07, 2010, 05:20:43 pm »
I'm loving the variety of opinions here, thanks for all the thought provoking stories everyone.

I don't believe there is any rule book in terms of how you should or shouldn't react to these journeys, but I'm pretty confident that if you do it with a smile on your face and you won't go far wrong  O0

I'm an English South African living in London, on my way to New Zealand. In the last 3 years I've adapted to calling robots, traffic lights (to avoid confusion  ;D), say Ja to my Mom but No Worries to my colleagues. Just roll it all together and have fun with it!

What's with the necessity to label things anyway? Fun to me is boring to you - neither is right or wrong.

Imagine how dull and uneventful life would be if we shared identical perspectives, opinions and attitudes.

Bring on the diversity I say!!

keeping it positive

SA Going to NZ Advice Forum

Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #96 on: August 07, 2010, 05:20:43 pm »

Offline frodo/maya

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #97 on: August 09, 2010, 06:40:04 pm »
Thanks Ryan, goodluck to you as well! :gl2:

Offline Mosescapetown

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #98 on: September 06, 2011, 07:20:57 pm »
now that was allot of reading in one thread...  :o 8)

I am very impressed with the different opinions given as well as recommended guidelines and approaches to different situations.For a newbie to the "move bizz" it was a real eye opener. :o I also really loved the comparisons between old and new immigrants. The "old" folks really had a tough time adjusting and paving the way so to speak.

To agree with some of the other posters in the thread I was surprised that Kiwis see us (SAers) as rude and unwilling to integrate. We are not like that even still today in SA. But the explanation given that they have different social behavior and mannerisms to us does clarify or explain their view of us. :blush:

As for the reasons immigrants left in the old days opposed to why they leaving today I can add the following. Crime and economic stability is worse than ever in SA history with no real vision for improvement in future. Even worse government has no real plans to improve these. Only empty promises and super high corruption levels. guess you also now know some of my reasons behind my decision to move. I love SA. But I am a family man with responsibilities towards my family. Providing them security and stability is important for the future. :smart:

Thanx for a most informative and thought provoking thread. This is a must read for all new migrants and even just those considering such a step. O0

Peace comes not from accepting where you are but who you are... In Christ

Offline maxnmike

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #99 on: December 01, 2012, 11:30:44 pm »
Having immigrated to NZ in 1984, had two children here and then returned to SA in 1990 then immigrating back in 2009 I can say with all sincerity that there is most definitely a HUGE change is NZers attitudes towards SAans.
When I lived here the first time I lived in Taupo, the timber industry ruled and life was good. People were happy with grandmas hand me down couch and we had the choice of 3 supermarkets and a few "chain clothing stores". Farmers still sold everthing, including swan dries and gumboots  :). Apart from a local doctor, we were the only South Africans in Taupo. The locals didnt care that we were from SA, they loved us, they welcomed us with open arms. We had a few laughs along the way because we didnt understand their terminology - eg, we were invited to newly made friends for supper. We arrived at 7h30, they looked confused and were running around madly trying to bath and feed kiddies to get them into bed before we arrived. Yup, we had arrived way to early, supper is the snack and toot you have between dinner and going to bed; duh
We left with heavy hearts, but having two children with no family around was incredibly difficult. Our marriage was on the rocks, I was a very young mother (1st child at 24) and yup, I needed my mum. Our friends were incredibly saddened saying that they were our family and we didnt need to go back.
Jump ahead almost 20 years and now back in NZ. We initially thought (incorrectly so) that Auckland would be the place that would be best suited to my husband for employment (yes, we came over cowboy style). We didnt have any friends of our own that had made the move but had been given contact details of "friends of friends". They were kind and tried to reassure us that employment would come and we needed to be patient etc etc. We decided after 3 months that all the jobs in my husbands field were in fact in Wellington, so we packed up and moved south. Let me add here that we LOVE Wellington or more accurately Upper Hutt (although my husband works in Wellington and commutes by train) and wouldnt want to live anywhere else. This is an account of OUR personal experiences with ex-South Africans both here and in Auckland. They form clicks and stick together like the proverbial. They have their weekly get-togethers to have a braai. The men stand around the braai while the ladies are in the kitchen making the salads, gossiping and looking after the kids. They presume that if you are at the braai you are either Afrikaans or can speak it. Their conversation is mainly along the lines of "what I hate about this place is this, that and the next thing" then its "What I need/want from SA is this that and the next thing" and there are no qualms about dropping the "K-word" into the conversation either. You hear Afrikaners standing in queues in supermarkets or just standing around chatting in general and complaining about kiwis. They laugh at kiwi accents and ridicule them. They complain bitterly when they see a black person and ask what the hell they are doing in NZ, that they should go back to bloody Africa etc. I am yet to hear any of them say "what I love about NZ is...." and "what my children love, can do, are able to do is...." I am sure that this attitude is no different to any other migrant community eg Chinese, Brits, Americans etc. but I havent seen or heard them be openly hostile about NZ/kiwis (perhaps because I dont speak/understand Mandarine  ;D )
What continues to blow my mind is - if you hate NZ that much and miss SA so darn much, go back. There are some, like us, who want to be here and love it. We have been told by our Kiwi friends that we are more Kiwi than a lot of New Zealanders and proudly so. The other is the way they speak so badly of other immigrants like they have more rights than everyone else to be here. That their qualifications are more worthy and that their children are the only ones that deserve a safe and happy future. The "superior race" attitude doesnt cut it here. We are to NZ as much an immigrant as a Chinese, Indian, Somalian or Brit. We as South Africans are not (as we have heard brandied around so often) more sought after than any other immigrant. We are here because we have a skill that is needed, no other reason. Why should you get a management position if you havent proved yourself? Sure you have a qualification and experience but its just a piece of paper. Prove your worth and work your way up.
We of course know South Africans who live here, we however do not socialise with them. We do not seek them out at schools, functions and the like. We dont have braais, we have BBQ's. We dont sms, we text. We dont send emails, we flick them. We love and embrace anything and everything that is NZ, we are proud of NZ achievements and get caught up in the hype, ie The Hobbit, the Silver Ferns, the All Blacks. The weather is what it is and we muck in. We get upset by things that upset Kiwis ie family violence, dead babies, binge drinking amongst the youth, the price of lamb, tagging, etc etc We have bought a camper van and we travel the country at every opportunity we get. We are living the kiwi dream, the one we moved here for. We are not living a South African dream in NZ.
Bottom line, South Africans are NOT special in any way shape or form. We are here by choice. We are not living in a "little SA", we are in NZ. "When in NZ do like NZ".
I will probably get a lot of flack from this, please know that these are my personal experiences and the experiences of some of our kiwi and non-SA friends.

Offline ronaldd

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #100 on: December 02, 2012, 05:33:27 am »
When I got told by my wife to go see this post,  I was expecting something much worse.  It is not special in ANY way. It is  just another post about a South African complaining about new South Africans.  About 1 South African not liking another demographic group.   Just like a lot of South Africans who complain,  you can consider yourself welcome in that club.  As i have said before , to many people,  in South Africa we would not easily have had people from the Freestate,  Johannesburg , Durban and Cape Town sit around the same camp fire. The only thing which many of us have in common is a country of birth.  English and Afrikaans people struggled to get along since the 1800s. The English led party would not even let the Maoris off a boat back in 1940/1. http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/8024104/Final-call-for-Maori-Battalion  and the ANC was founded in 1912,  yet "everything started" in 1946 by those Afrikaans racists... TUI ad ,  YEAH RIGHT.

So....  When I hear about superiority , then its typical South African,  and absolutely nothing new. 

Chinese people are treated badly in NZ by Kiwis.   If you are in Auckland you get told quickly that if there was an accident, 9/10 times its an Asian.  Lack of understanding of ethnic groupings includes a whole bunch of countries as Asian but to generalise it as and Asian is easier, because more than 1/5 th of the world is Asian. Is a Filipino also Asian?

You knew you were going to get "flak", saying it in your post should not stop people from expressing their view.. We should not use the K word..  It's not that South Africans complain and discriminate more than others.  You are getting a response purely because you say South Africans are not special or no more than Kiwis,  yet its acceptable for a New Zealanders to make racist comments about Maori on every occasion but a South African should not (and would not).  Many of us(ex-pats) are more accepted by Maori folks than Kiwi folks,  once they realise that not all of us are the same.   I had a beer and biltong dringink session with some Maori mates, and i can tell you , they are worthy of a good drinking session,  they have good stamina.

The wife and I were talking about it today.  She arranged a specialist doctor's appointment for the son of a Kiwi friend. She was told over the phone that it was $270 for the appointment.   When the appointment was finished the doctor charged the kiwi $90.  The friend mentioned its most likely because she(my wife) is a foreigner.  So... should be bother verifying it or just accept it?  We just shrugged it off.  How many other places were we charged 3 times?  My kid's after school activities we are charged through our necks,  other kids go for free.

We love it here in NZ.  We support our teams. We support our histories.  If we wanted to go back,  we would.  If we want to complain about things, we will.  We live in a free country where we have every right to complain.  If you don't like us having freedoms like that,  you should go back to South Africa.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2012, 05:42:58 am by ronaldd »
2008-04-06 Landed
2008-06-06 WP.
2008-06-17 EOI
2008-07-16  Selected
2008-12-04 Residence application submitted
2009-03-30 Residence + RRV Granted
2009-04-07 Received passports
2014-07-28 Citizenship

Offline maxnmike

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #101 on: December 03, 2012, 10:12:50 pm »
Given that my home language is English, ie I didnt have to pass an IELTS test for residency, I thought it would be wise however to double check the meaning of "forum" and yes, I was correct - "an opportunity for an exchange of views where anyone can participate". I realise too of course that I am by no means a major contributor to this forum (some over 1000) but having an understanding of the meaning of a forum, I do know that I am entitled to MY PERSONAL views!
I do not often allow myself to be baited, but wish to point out that my contribution to this particular feed was based on the initial piece written by Nolan, regarding Kiwis perception of South Africans, more acurately this part in particular:


"We need to realise these differences.
We need to work on our emotional baggage that we are lugging around so that we can get rid of it before we destroy our image entirely.
We need work hard to turn around this growing perception of us.
We need to realise that when we arrive here we are seen as just another immigrant from a foreign country, so we need to work harder than the next guy to get back to where we were in SA.
We need to be greatful every day that the Kiwis have given us the opportunity to come here and live in peace and safety."


I have re-read what I wrote and never once did I make it personal, it was a general perception.  When I said I expected some "flak" I meant it in a general sense, not a personal one. Living on this site and constantly posting, does not give you the right to supremacy of the forum and the only one with a say. To take a dig at me personally was un-called for. I do however note that in the past you were unable to sit around a campfire with people from the same provinces within your own country, no wonder then, that you continue to segregate the people within in your new adopted country, Maoris and Kiwis; I thought they were just all New Zealanders?! As the saying goes, "if the cap fits wear it"!

Perhaps next time your wife might consider responding herself rather than calling you to take a look - just a thought...

SA Going to NZ Advice Forum

Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #101 on: December 03, 2012, 10:12:50 pm »

Offline Ostrich

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #102 on: December 04, 2012, 04:02:56 am »
It takes time for people to adjust during immigration. It's not just South Africans, and it doesn't only occur in NZ. Assimilation is a well documented process, and one which can take generations in some cases. There's nothing wrong with this, and it doesn't make people 'bad' immigrants.  This is one of the reasons that countries try to put a quota on immigration from any one country at a given time (to maintain the speed of assimilation).

The NZ Department of Labour has published plenty of data on retention rates.  According to them, South Africans have one of the highest rates of retention in NZ. This seems like a positive thing to me, and implies a greater 'pull' to assimilate. Here's some of the research I'm referring to, if anyone is interested (see figure 2.3 in the full doc) : http://dol.govt.nz/publications/research/migrants-in-nz-retention-onward-migration-1998-2011

It's totally normal -- universal, actually -- to have some adjustment stress. It's called "acculturative stress" in psychology. And, it's a part of assimilation.  :) It's also normal to miss your home country, want familiar items from your home country around (including people). I'm speaking from experience, having taught English to new immigrants in America, and having immigrated twice myself. I think most people who have immigrated from any nation can relate, if you ask.

As immigrants, it's great if we aim to assimilate and become Kiwis. But, ultimately, you will never erase where you came from, and the process might only be complete in the second or even third generation.  But, if people are happy living in NZ, and the kids are soaking up local culture, it will happen. As they say, she'll come right! O0
SMC, from SA - EOI Submitted: 13 Dec 2010, EOI Selected: 15 Dec 2010, EOI Decision Successful: 04 Jan 2011, ITA Received: 06 Jan 2011, ITA Submitted: 08 March 2011, CO Allocated: 22 March 2011, Telephone Interview: 4 May 2011, Medicals clear: 23 May 2011, Residence Approved: 7 June 2011, NZ 19 July!

Offline vulpes

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #103 on: December 04, 2012, 06:11:12 am »
i think, in reading posts it is always helpful to remember that your own experience does not invalidate someone elses.

and like ostritch says, immigration and assimilation is a process. one that you continue to go through. new zealand will be for us, our 8th country as we are professional expats (by this I mean, our work moves us around the world). so we know how to move. not so much how to stay put!

so for us, this move is going to be really different. but understanding that it is going to be a process that doesnt finish with getting the visa in the passport, getting a job and house, is important.
23/08/2010 EOI Submitted
25/08/2010 EOI Selected
10/09/2010 EOI Selection Rescinded
23/05/2010 EOI Re Selected
06/06/2011 ITA Received
27/11/2011 ITA Submitted
10/12/2011 ITA Rejected
16/03/2012 ITA ReSubmitted
11/05/2012 CO Assigned
14/09/2012 Phone Interview
26/10/2012 PR Approved
15/02/2013 In NZ

Offline 2GatJakkals

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Re: A Change in Mindset
« Reply #104 on: December 04, 2012, 09:41:53 am »
Actually, I find value in both Maxnmike's and Ronaldd's posts.  Each present one of the pieces needed to build this complicated immigration-puzzle.

Maxnmike helps me remember that my adjustment to my new country will be easier if I make the effort to see things the way my new countrymen do.  Ronaldd reminds me that I do not need to be a saint.  Where I come from everybody has preferences, where I am now everybody still does, and I am no different.
EOI selected Sept 2011, ITA received Oct 2011, ITA submitted 23 Feb 2012.
Job offer received 10 Apr 2012, Applied for WP 16 Apr 2012, WP issued 24 May 2012, Wife started working in Wellington 1 June 2012.
PR approved 18 July 2012, House in Pretoria sold Oct 2012, Arrived in NZ 1 Dec 2012