This is the third year that I know Centre Placet: first time from September 2018 to November 2018, second time from April 2019 to July 2019 and third time from March 2020 to August 2020.
Centre Placet has welcomed me and accompanied me in my daily life. The centre provides the internet connection, small kitchen equipment and guidance in other services that the residents might need. Personally, I really appreciated the help and the support I received during the preparation and facilitation of an exchange workshop on the theme of "Managing a health crisis: Similarities between HIV/AIDS and COVID-19, the case of Burund". I really appreciate the collaboration with the staff of this Centre. I wish them courage and good continuation of their mission.
Dr. Bonaventure Nikoyandoye, August 2020
Exposé sur la gestion d'une crise sanitaire au Burundi : similarités entre le VIH et le COVID-19
I am originally from Benin.
I am doing my Master’s 120 in Ethics and Public Policy at the Faculty of Philosophy of UCLouvain and I am going to enroll for a PhD in Philosophy of Nature. It took me some time to adapt to life in the hostel and the ARP (Association des Résidents du Placet) officials at the time helped me to integrate. The first Placet activity I attended was Nicolas’ (Delbar) digital creation workshop.
By becoming president of the ARP, I became more involved in the center’s activities. The Internet and Wi-Fi is good; it is a service that residents appreciate very much. Housing assistance should be promoted.
Alain Linsoussi, August 2020
Kadiata Barry, August 2020
Now I am a doctoral student at the University of Barcelona, Spain, and I will be at UCLouvain as a visiting researcher during the next months of February, March and April.
Perla Massó, September 2020
I arrived at Placet in 1993, when we got a comfortable flat for me and my three children. I found at Placet a warm welcome and a multicultural atmosphere that my children and I very quickly appreciated.
I remember that our children's birthdays were celebrated in one of Placet’s rooms with the appropriate reservations. My husband, who until then had already joined the family, celebrated his 40th birthday there and we celebrated Christmas and New Year’s Eve in the Placet family with many friends from several African, Latin American and Arab countries. We enjoyed participating in the coordination of Placet. I do not remember all the plans we made. I remember the community bus trips to Holland, Prague, and Cologne ... and I still remember working to better integrate different nationalities, to understand our differences and appreciate our diversity.
Even today, my children still remember Centre Placet with affection. We continue to value the friendship of friends in the present. I returned to LLN for a while and the momentum I learned at Placet has not disappeared: I am now a local councilor for the town of Ottignies-Louvain-la-Neuve.
Cecilia Torres, October 2020
Photo taken on the courtesy of the town of Ottignies-Louvain-la-Neuve
David (Amram, coordinator of the CEC of the Placet Centre) supervised us and took us on a tour of Belgium (Blankenberg, Dinant, and Flanders); we also went camping and photoshootings as models.
Thanks to David, I was able to go after my dreams full of audacity. I am now a consultant for the African Union and the European Union.
Bora K., child of a student at the Placet Centre in 2008, December 2020
Testimony in video for Bora.
It is a feeling of satisfaction, in this context of Covid, that Placet was able to make this moment available. I would like to thank Isabel (Alvarez, sociologist and resident support worker at the Centre Placet), the Placet team and the participants (at the webinar).
Espoir Kalambi Bisimwa is a Congolese doctoral student (Democratic Republic of Congo) from UCLouvain, at the Laboratoire d’Anthropologie Prospective (LAAP). In the context of an exchange workshop on "the study of sexual violence of the Mai-Mai tribes in South Kivu (DRC)”, he was able to testify about the support of the Placet Centre for the presentation and promotion of his research..
Espoir Kalambi Bisimwa, December 2020
Webinar on sexual violence in South Kivu: the case of the Mai-Mai tribes.
In Cameroon, I studied Bilingual Literature (English-French). After this curriculum, I had the opportunity to pursue my studies in Spain, more precisely at the Université du Pays Basque (Vitoria), from where I obtained my Master's degree in "Language Acquisition in Multilingual Settings.
En ce moment, je fais un Master en Langues et Lettres Modernes, orientation générale, à finalité didactique (ROGE2MD) à l'Université Catholique de Louvain et j'ai la chance d'être un résident du Placet.
Now, I am doing a Master's degree in Modern Languages and Humanities, general orientation, with a didactic focus (ROGE2MD) at the University of Louvain and I am lucky enough to be a resident of Centre Placet. Why do I say that I am lucky ? It is since I have been well received in this environment and so far, the team is always listening. I will not fail to mention the activity that marks me the most at Centre Placet: Friday football. Thanks to this activity, I met my best friends.
Moreover, the Grand hall has always been my favourite place for course revision and exams.
In short, at Centre Placet, I feel well surrounded by people with values similar to mine, which are love, respect, equity, peace, responsibility, and tolerance.
Yves Nyage, March 2021
I was particularly impressed by the warm welcome adapted to my needs as an international student, especially with a family. Centre Placet offered me a wonderful and family development beyond the academic, the intercultural, and the international.
Together with my family, we were able to benefit from dignified and optimal conditions for a family-study balance abroad. It is not for nothing that that my children born in Centre Placet identify themselves as Belgians, support Belgian Red Devils football team, identify with Kevin De Bruyne... Centre Placet has something to do with this Belgian anchoring !
Personally, Centre Placet has offered me many opportunities, including the possibility to enjoy my favourite hobby, basketball. By supporting this activity, among others, Centre Placet has allowed me to continue combining business with pleasure, far from my homeland.
Furthermore, by participating in the ARP as a commissioner for sports and cultural affairs, I was able to benefit from an enriching involvement in organizations and community and multicultural meetings.
A multicultural richness that is of great interest in my daily professional life as a psychologist. Indeed, thanks to my Burundian-Belgo-Canadian background, and especially my multicultural encounter at Centre Placet, I am equipped with a rich and diversified multicultural listening experience for the benefit of my career as a clinical psychologist in Quebec.
I do thank Centre Placet for continuing to foster this personal, academic, family, multicultural, international... development of the residents..
Dr. Alexis Ndimubandi, April 2021
The multicultural encounters also allowed me to progress in my studies, thanks not only to the heterogeneous cultures, but also to the multidisciplinarity of the students, having various expertises in their own country. Centre Placet allows everyone to share and help each other and the staff is always there to accompany and advise us no matter what our needs or problems are.
In short, the well-being of each student is a priority here. I would like express my heartfelt gratitude and encourage the entire Centre Placet team to keep moving forward, because we all know that behind all the good things I just mentioned, you are there and that you work very hard behind the scenes.
Haingonirina Raholiarivao, December 2021
« I came with my mother to study for two years at school while she was doing her thesis. I would like to thank Centre Placet for all the activities it offers workshops, trips like the one we made to Ostende which will remain in my memory. It was great to live together and share moments with young people, even if we do not see each other afterwards. Belgium is a very open country: people are welcoming and try to be friends with you. They even try to speak a few words in Spanish ! »
« We really enjoyed living at Centre Placet and there is a word I always use when talking about Centre Placet : « it is a real family » ! There were times when I missed the country, the food, the sun... A huge sadness for leaving my family with one of my daughters who stayed in Ecuador. I went through moments that were sometimes difficult to overcome and I found comfort at Placet, with smiles, people who reached out to me, and friends. It really touched my heart and that’s why Centre Placet is a family to me.
During my stay, I made a presentation (North-South/South-South workshop), and I explained that despite our different cultures, our different colours, and even if we come from different continents, we are all brothers and sisters. Humanity needs this feeling, to understand each other, all together.
Belgium is a country that is close to my heart: there are 3 countries that are close to my heart, but Belgium has marked my life. I would like to thank it; I feel very grateful. »
Karla (FILO3 DP) & Mélanie Hidalgo, August 2022
P. « Discovering Belgium, learning its languages and get to know the culture of the country and the city of Louvain-la-Neuve. This city offers a good experience for its culture, its architecture and its type of urbanism ».
J. « We got to know Centre Placet in 2019, where we lived for a few months. After this first stay, we returned to Colombia. For this new stay in Belgium, we wanted to come-back to Centre Placet because it is a very interesting place, with a lot of possibilities of sharing, events and spaces to do something else than my PhD ».
P. It is a quiet place where I feel protected. The neighbours are friendly, all the activities offered are perfect to meet other people from other cultures who live here: Belgians, Africans, Latino, Asians, etc ».
J. « We love the friendliness and efficiency of the entire Centre Placet team. Their dedication to the students creates a commitment from the community. Centre Placet is not only a place to live, it is also a place to share things with the whole community. We really appreciate the workshops, events and activities we have participated in ».
P. « I like all the workshops I have participated in here, like the brewing workshop, the sculpture workshop, painting... A lot of things ! »
J. « Evenings ceremonies that allow us to meet our neighbours and share a meal or a drink … »
P. « As well as their subjects of study ! »
J. « Tasting food and drinks from other countries »
Paula Vargas & José Adolfo Castañeda Ramirez, October 2022
Emmanuel Ndayambaje (Graduated from UCLouvain – Cohort 2020-21 DVLP2MC), January 2022