"I believe in myself after everything I've experienced in life, and everything happened for a reason."
Model Citizen Media provides a platform to recognise fashion models, photographers, designers, makeup artists, hair stylists, creative directors, bloggers, stylists, and labels around the world. Every day, we feature an individual on Model Citizen Interviews. People get to know each of them - their hopes, challenges, aspirations and inspirations in life.
What do you do, and what is your passion in life?
I'm Donnie Bergsma,
Born and raised by my foster parent in Friesland.
I studied and completed social worker but found out that it is not my thing in life.
I was 17 when I arrived in Amsterdam Because I was not accepted as gay, which is still very difficult for people to understand in Friesland.
And in Amsterdam, I soon realized that I am a boy who loves life and wants to get everything out of it,
So I started working in the nightlife in Amsterdam as a bartender, cocktail shaker host, and events manager
Because as a bartender you have a lot of freedom and you meet a lot of interesting people.
I'm interested in stories and backgrounds of people and I would love to see everyone smiling.
A lot different from what I have studied, But I was not happy about that why not? : is because The way of thinking of people, I could not handle that, In some things, it made me angry because I myself did not have the perfect youth situation when I was a child. With that in mind, and I came to Amsterdam, I saw that I was not someone who had to work as a social worker but had to make fun and do what I want to do! And do what makes me happy. So that's the horeca! because I feel free! I can travel whenever I wanna I can drink whenever I wanna I can dance whenever I wanna! :)
My passion in life :
Is to make people happy , You will wonder why?? That's I have never been happy when I was a child.
My biological mother was addicted to drugs and my father was a big criminal that's why I grew up in a foster family. This was certainly not the ideal situation when you just a child but that you will probably understand.
So my passion is to be happy, live your life and don't think about tomorrow! think about today, and if you can make someone else also happy because we all need happiness and if we can help each other with this. DO IT!
I was 17 years old when I came by myself to Amsterdam which very scary because I did not know the city and I never been there before.
I made goals for myself: I have to tell you for so far I can be proud of myself.
the first goal was: finding a house ore a room to stay! I found this in 3 days, It made me the happiest man on earth
second goal: find a job: That was easy the guy who helped me with the room helped me also on a job.
the third goal was: find my own house: also that worked.
the fourth goal was: Was to contact my parents slowly again, Which I have not talked to for years also this worked and i have contact after everything with my real dad! which make me happy :-)
my new goal is: To open my own club with shows, cocktails and a lounge area where everyone is welcome.
That does not matter who or what you are. That by showing shows you will sweep and open your eyes,
And you will think of the shows that we are all the same. : But of course, it will be a club so it will all be with a wink.
Who is your inspiration in life and how do you stay inspired?
Who is my inspiration in life? Michael Jackson ... He changed the world with his music, his lyrics, his way of dancing and he made people think. He has shown that if you believe in something you can come there by working hard, Even that not everyone was a big fan of him.
But he did what he wanted to do and what made him happy.
And that's emotional that half the world is against you but he simply went through believing in himself, and still after he passed away. That he still has an influence on the minds of a human being who listen to his music.
How I still keep inspired: I believe in myself after everything I've experienced in life, and everything happened for a reason. I've seen that when you're in a bad period of your life , and what me still inspired is, thats because there is always someone or something behind the unopened door that brings you to a beautiful other chapter of life.
What is your life aspiration?
My wish in life is: That I become successful in everything I like to do
What has to do with opening my bar and seems to be a model, that I inspire people and that I can be happy.
We all make mistakes we wish we could take back. Tell me about a time you wish you had handled a situation differently with a colleague.
To believe in a boss I worked for before and made this bar a success, I never got paid for it Because I did this because it was my passion and the love for the bar was so big And I trusted him, But after that he saw that it was a great success he did not need me anymore and he took it over.
I will not do this for anybody anymore and if I could turn back time I had asked money for it and put the concepts I had made up on paper and make sure that nobody could take over without my permission.
But it's a lesson in life, do not trust everyone because not everyone wants the best for you! there are people who only wants the best for them self and use you to get there.
When you're working with a large number of customers it's tricky to deliver excellent service to them all. How do you go about prioritizing your customer's needs?
As long as you explain everything honestly and treat people with respect and smile, everyone understands the situation and respects you as well.
For me, as a bartender is that is not that difficult I'm used a large number of customers a smile is already enough.
Tell me about a time you had to be very strategic in order to meet all your top priorities.
That was the time when my adopted parents put me out of the house because I was gay,
That time I went by myself to Amsterdam, and when you know nobody and sleep 3 days on the dam square That you realize that you look good and go to the gay street to find someone who can help you further.
That was one of my top priority to find a place to stay ! after that.... To find a job and build a whole new life to where I am now! lucky me I found a guy who helped he had a room to rent for me and gave me a job .:-)
Give me an example of a time when you were able to successfully persuade someone to see things your way.
If I talk now about an event what I organized before:
I have a big eye of what people want during the evening that because I listen to them and i take my time to talk with people ( i think more people who work in the nightlife should do this too but that's a different story )
because of that I can really understand what works and does not work during the night like music, dancers, bartender ( What their attitude is for example) and the way how people wanted to be treated during the evening.
All this makes you feel like people are happy and soon your event will be a success,
Then it's no longer so hard to convince someone that you are a big asset to that person.
People talk about you, and the more people talking about you, the more interesting you become.
Tell me about your proudest professional accomplishment.
To all what happened with my old boss ( the bar I had made successful )
I get an opportunity to organize another event at a different location.
Which is super cool and of course I took this opportunity to show that I did not need my old boss.
I asked 2 friends from me to help me to make this event so big and successful our promotion was so great
That everyone in the city began to talk about it and everyone was curious that everyone wanted to go there.
What happened was that we were completely sold out that night and my old bar I worked for was totally empty
that my old boss congratulated me, and of course, I found that secretly super cool! that was the moment that I was proud to myself and thought of hard works pays hard! the people were happy the turnover was good I showed that I did not need my old boss to be successful. So a big Middle finger for him!
My Instagram name is: @donniebergsma
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