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    Brussels helps… our international students!

    In a few weeks, if all goes well, numerous international students will arrive (back) at our university to study in one of our English-taught programmes or as an exchange student. Due to the coronavirus, many of them will have to self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

    As a university, we think it is extremely important to support these students, to facilitate the practicalities and to make their time in isolation as bearable as possible. This means assisting them in practical matters such as grocery shopping, as well as creating a network of like-minded individuals who can stay in touch, ask them how they are doing, and try to help out with general questions on Brussels and on VUB.

    We are still working out some of the practicalities of what we can offer, in consultation with the different student support services. What is already certain is that we cannot do this without the support of our VUB community… meaning: YOU!

    VUB has teamed up with the Brussels Helps project. Their goal is to match people in need with those who can help them out within the Brussels Region. In addition, we will communicate to all incoming students to register on the Brussels Helps platform in case they do need any extra help. And we are calling upon our current staff and students to register as a volunteer and to support our international students with small gestures that can make a big difference. You can register to do groceries, go to the post office or the pharmacy, or to get in touch by phone or video call for example. Do mention in which neighbourhoods of Brussels you would be able to help, to find the optimal match.

    Most international students are expected to arrive as of end of August, some will arrive later, depending on visa acquirement or travel regulations. Most help will be needed in the two weeks upon their arrival, when they are obliged to self-isolate. But of course, in the meantime, don’t hesitate to help out others who are in dire need of help as well.

    We truly hope we can count on the generosity of the VUB community to make our international community feel at home in these bizarre times!