Fun and Support for Expat Women

A few weeks ago I founded a Meet Up group for Expat women in the Silicon Valley.

logo_meetupTo host this kind of group has been on my To Do list for quite some time and I finally I got around doing it. Meet Up is a website that brings people together in thousands of cities to do what they want to do in life. It has almost 30 mio. members around the globe.

“When we get together and do the things that matter to us, we’re at our best. And that’s what Meetup does. It brings people together to do, explore, teach and learn the things that help them come alive.”

I want to offer a group for women that moved to the Silicon Valley rather recently and who are looking for new friends, new ideas and guidance how to live a happy and meaningful life away from home. The expat life hasn’t always been easy for me either and I’d love to share my experience or at least bring people together that can support and encourage each other.

After only two weeks the group has already 40 members and last Friday we had the first meeting at the San Jose Museum of Art Café. After a few last minute cancellations we were four people, but I was still pleased with this outcome. I wasn’t sure if anyone would show up at all.

The four of us represented four different countries, two generations, moms, a student, an American that feels like an Expat in her own country and everyone has at least lived in a few different places all over the world.

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We had a very interesting conversation about living in this extraordinary place of California. We shared our experiences, our dislikes and our strategies how to integrate and how to make meaningful connections with other people. We discussed the fact that the diversity of the Bay Area can also make it difficult to find a variety of friends because some people “keep to themselves”. Americans spend lots of their free time mainly with family, and the different nationalities often only hang out with one another. One woman told us why she likes and how she uses  “Next Door” to engage with her close community. It is so fascinating to me how people have different perceptions of their life abroad, different approaches how to meet new people and how to create a new existence.

After our talk, two of us went to see the “BEAUTY – Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial” exhibition.

I’m looking forward to our next meeting on February, 16th. If you know anyone that might be interested in joining this Meet Up group, please spread the word. Click here.

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9 Comments

  1. merrillyew

    February 6, 2017 at 10:29 pm

    Hi cöllefornia, nice blog. Your mention of meetup.com prompted me to drop you these few lines. We also have several meetups here in SoCal, for instance, the Inland Empire German Meetup (https://www.meetup.com/de-DE/ieglmg/), or in Orange County (https://www.meetup.com/de-DE/The-Orange-County-German-Language-Meetup-Group/), or in Pasadena (https://www.meetup.com/de-DE/German-in-Pasadena-and-SouthBay/), or further south until San Diego, there are quite a few more German speaking meetups. Over time the members get acquainted with each other and it is like meeting with old friends. One advice, put a lot of #tags to your group so people can find you. Second advice, create a Facebook page equally with a lot of #tags and link back to your meetup group. If you have any questions, glad to help. LG

    1. bellamonte

      February 6, 2017 at 11:11 pm

      Hi Merrill, thank you so much for your feedback! I’m not necessarily looking for Germans but all your advice is great! I will add the #tags and consider the facebook group! Danke nochmal! Ich finde es klasse, dass du einen deutschen blog hast. Wir waren vor zwei Jahren auch in Costa Rica und es ist ein tolles Land. LG zurück

  2. San

    February 9, 2017 at 1:28 pm

    How fun! I wish I lived closer 😉

    1. bellamonte

      February 10, 2017 at 4:43 pm

      Yes, it would be great if you could join. We should try and meet up some day. 🙂

  3. restlessjo

    February 11, 2017 at 1:20 am

    That’s a brave move, Kathrin, and I’m sure it will pay dividends. The advice about an FB page is good too. Have a great weekend! 🙂 🙂

    1. bellamonte

      February 13, 2017 at 2:25 pm

      Thanks, Jo! I haven’t walked for a while, but planning on joining you again soon. Hope all is well!

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