“When I’m there” is a documentary about pioneers and innovators. People who have their roots in Morocco. Engaged, entrepreneurial and with ambitions that go beyond borders. They want to make a difference in their countries of origin.

The story

International migration is a hot topic these days. Its actuality is captured by many headlines and huge media exposure. Unfortunately, the news is often negative. When the positive aspects are not highlighted, we miss opportunities to gain deeper understanding about this fascinating topic.

“When I’m there” highlights migrants’ positive contributions to their countries of origin. Meet Amar, Saïda and Gyzlene. Born in Morocco but citizens in the Netherlands. Each of them is active to make a change in their countries of origin: they build wells in remote areas, renovate schools and import equipment for children with disabilities.

The documentary explores the driving forces behind their projects. What are they achieving, and how? Is their local knowledge about Morocco helping them?  Do they speak the same language? How can they be sure to address the real needs of the populations? The film talks about connecting to others, feeling at home and the search for identity.


Think about the 224 million migrants all over the world, with as many stories. Stories of people who leave their home and livelihoods to settle elsewhere. Without cutting loose their roots. Many migrants contribute to improving the living condition in their home counties. By sending money, know-how or by connecting people. Their desire to ‘do good’ is strong. Amar, Saïda en Gyzlene also felt the strong desire to help their home countries.

Marjolein Veldman, producer and director:

When I met them a few years ago I saw how much effort they put into their projects. Each had a different story. I was impressed by how they made connections between Morocco and the Netherlands.

Their experiences illustrate very well that it’s possible to love and like several cultural contexts simultaneously. Their stories symbolize the desire of many migrants to support their countries of origin. This is what I’d like to show: their outlook on how migration can benefit in many ways.


The documentary has been realized with the support of great people and organizations. Through a crowdfunding campaign, sixty-two persons invested 3.299 euro to enable the editing of the film. The embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands as well as the Dutch organization Maatschappij tot Nut van ’t Algemeen brought in a substantial financial amount to realize the film. Volunteers put their talents at work for the translation of the Arabic and Tarifit parts. We are very grateful to all of them who generously supported us to make this dream come true!

The best way to help us now is to spread the word through our Facebook page or via Twitter.

Contact us for a screening

Curious to watch the documentary and see the stories of Amar, Saïda and Gyzlene? Contact us for the possibilities of a screening and write an e-mail to Marjolein Veldman via info@alsikdaarben.nl. Thank you!