Guilherme Rosa was born in Luanda, Angola – a former Portuguese colony which gained independence in 1975. But like many other Portuguese people born in Angola, Guilherme was brought up in Portugal, where he lived until he moved to London in 2002.
What started as a summer holiday in London, became a turning point in Guilherme’s life. One of his first jobs in London was in a café, but his love for politics soon came to life when he realised the Portuguese-speaking community in London wasn’t politically active. Guilherme wanted to change that.
Fourteen years down the line and Guilherme works as a local councillor in Stockwell, fighting for the rights of Portuguese-speakers and challenging perceptions.
Here, Guilherme tells us about two distinct groups of Portuguese migrants living in Lambeth and around London: an older, more traditional generation – mostly concentrated in Lambeth – and a younger generation that came after the financial crisis of 2008.
The language barrier is one of the biggest challenges faced by the older generation of Portuguese-speakers living in London. Guilherme believes this causes inevitable problems, including not being able to integrate into the wider society in the UK. Overcrowded housing and domestic violence are also problems often experienced by many members of the community. Guilherme is using his work to tackle these important issues.
You can find out more about Guilherme Rosa by liking his offical Facebook page.