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Together we're fans with Aydan!

In 'Being a Fan Together,' we speak to PSV supporters from the entire Brainport Region and ask them what it means to be a fan of PSV and the region.

The Brainport region is growing rapidly. With more people from all corners of the world living and working here together, it creates immense diversity, and living together doesn't always come naturally. The partnership between Brainport Eindhoven & PSV re-released the song "7 dagen lang" by BOTS with La Fuente and Eindhoven's Finest. PSV players also wore unique shirts with golden stripes and a Spotify code because here we work, fight, and celebrate together. We spoke to the winners who received these unique, signed shirts.

When we call Aydan, a cheerful lady answers the phone. "Make sure to mention that I'm also very smart," she says with a wink. Aydan works at Fontys FHKE and teaches language classes to PABO students, for whom she also puts in tremendous effort in other areas. "I am very socially oriented and honesty is my top priority. That sometimes gets me into trouble."

What does being a fan mean to you?
Being a fan of PSV is only a part of who I am. I think it's so important that people can truly be themselves in all their facets. I regularly go to matches, as I live near the Philips Stadium. But seeing people walk to the stadium happily, and usually come out with a big smile, is also something I really enjoy.

My two brothers, on the other hand, know all the facts and figures about PSV. I'm not that fanatical and often think, "Can it be a bit less?" They were both very happy that I won this shirt. And I'm also going to show it to my students.

Are you a proud resident of Eindhoven?
Together with my parents and two brothers, I grew up in Bergen op Zoom. I first studied Literature in Tilburg, but I got my first job in Eindhoven. My brothers also moved to Eindhoven for their work or studies at TU/e. It is definitely a city where I feel immensely at home; in all aspects of my life, I have a connection with the city. I hope it is a place where you can increasingly be yourself.

How do you view the Brainport region?
With great interest. We have an incredible position technologically with companies like ASML. That also means we have a sort of exemplary role. And of course, people from all over the world come here, including those with children. This diversity enriches us.

What do you think of the '7 dagen lang' campaign by Brainport Eindhoven?
I have mixed feelings about it. On one hand, I find it unfortunate that we still need these kinds of actions. We are now 100 years on, and it's still not a given that you 'belong.' I find that very sad.

But I also think it's very good that there is continuous attention for it. Especially from large institutions like PSV and Brainport Eindhoven. You get a lot of reach for a meaningful message. We really should be more open to each other and accept people for who they are. It is important to cherish your authenticity. Just stay true to your inner self and your moral principles. I think, for example, of the difference it makes what name you have. In a job application, your CV could end up in the trash because of your last name. That shouldn't happen; you are just who you are.

Finally, looking back at 'Working together, fighting together, and celebrating together,' what do you enjoy celebrating?
We should celebrate successes more often. I'm happy when PSV wins, but I find it even more beautiful when a social theme is connected to it. Being human and maintaining individuality are central themes to me. That's why I also think it's important to celebrate events like Purple Friday with my educational institution, where students and teachers show solidarity with the LGBTQIA community. That flag could always hang in the school for me. It gives young people with those feelings a reason to approach you or to discuss it with each other. But also think of celebrating the World Day for Cultural Diversity on May 21, Children's Book Week, or the International Children's Day on April 23.

Thank you for your wonderful story, Aydan! Enjoy the unique shirt!