(3/3) My Dad always wanted me to be a doctor, regardless of the fact that I couldn’t stand the sight of blood! But I’m afraid that I didn’t meet his expectations because I did Arts instead! Later, I transferred to Law, followed by a Masters in Conflict Resolution. Now I work for the Financial Ombudsman Service.

I was also recently elected as the Melbourne representative of a consultative body that reports the concerns of Portuguese communities living abroad back to the Portuguese government. We also assist with initiatives that address these concerns. I’ve been involved in community work since I was 17. I really enjoy it – it’s a way to keep in touch with my culture, and the Portuguese community here is a little piece of my first home.

I think my parents are proud of me. My father was definitely proud when he came to my graduations, but I think he’d still prefer it if I was a doctor!

They’re still working hard. My mum works 7 days a week – she doesn’t know any other way. I’d like them to stop and enjoy life and do all the things they’ve wanted to do in their lives but haven’t been able to. Both my brother and I know that if they hadn’t come here, our lives would have been very different, and we’re so grateful for the sacrifices they made.

This is such a wonderful country. Whenever my parents and I hear someone criticise it, we’re just not interested. Australia has looked after us, and we’re so thankful for that.

Arrived 1990

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