The Naturalization Day was on 15 December. This is the day on which people who become Dutch nationals receive an official statement proving that they are Dutch. Since 2007, all municipalities organize an annual naturalization ceremony on 15 December.
In most municipalities, holding the naturalization ceremony is a party. We attended the ceremony in the municipality of Arnhem. Because December 15 this year was on Sunday, it was held on December 16 this year. 26 people took part in the ceremony.
Richard Arends works in the Civil Affairs department of the municipality of Arnhem and he is involved in this naturalization ceremony. 'Every time we try to make it a party for the participants. We celebrate it with a snack, drink, music and a formal moment. We often receive positive responses from participants. Before these ceremonies, we just sent a decision. This is much more personal.'
Mr Kazmir was present at the naturalization ceremony. He comes from Kurdish Ira. He has been in the Netherlands for seven years and came to the Netherlands as a political refugee. 'I have found my place in the Netherlands and now work here as a car mechanic. I am very happy that I am becoming a Dutch citizen today. For me it means the end of a period of uncertainty.'
We also met Caroline Bégin at the ceremony. She is from Canada and has been in the Netherlands since 2003. Love has brought her to the Netherlands. 'Today is a special day for me. I would like to fully contribute to Dutch society.'
We congratulate all new Dutch people on acquiring Dutch nationality!