GPWA Times Magazine - Issue 58 - February 2024

GPWA AFFILIATE INTERVIEW SERIES Please elaborate on your experience as a self-described “third-culture-kid” and how it shaped your life both professionally and personally. A “third-culture-kid” is a person that grew up between different cultures and because of that, I developed my own “third culture.” In my case, it’s a combination of the culture of my parents, who are both Dutch, and the culture of the countries where I lived (Netherlands, Qatar and Saudi Arabia) during my childhood. Culture is shaped by more things than merely the country where you grow up. Other factors of influence are social class of parents, peers, school, sports clubs, etc. During my life, an international community was the norm. A very mixed group of cultures. This is in contrast to most people who grow up in one place with parents from that place and not being exposed to other cultures. Today, this is less special than it was in the ’80s and ‘90s. I had an international upbringing because of my father’s career. At the age of 3 until till 9-years-old, I lived in Qatar from 1986 to 1989 and Saudi Arabia from 1990 until the start of the Gulf War. And from summer 1992 to summer 1994, I lived in an international boarding school in the Netherlands while my parents lived in Syria. As a child, you consider anything you experience and see as “normal.” It was at a later age in my teens while back in the Netherlands that I started to realize that a lot of things that I considered “normal” were not considered normal by my peers, such as the Arab/Muslim culture where men would wear “dresses” (long white robes called “thawbs”) and women would always walk a couple of meters behind the men. Also, five times a day people would stop doing what they were doing, in the middle of the road, and start praying. Growing up between different cultures made me question what is “normal” from a young age. It made me very open-mindFloris Assies - BetterWorldCasinos From his childhood in the Middle East to becoming a sustainable webmaster, “BetterWorldCasinos” explains how his third-culture upbringing led to a journey committed to redefining the rules Visionary iGaming’s Global GPWAtimes.org 58

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