Ilona (30) exchanges social housing for a villa for a week with a gift: “a gift from heaven” | internal

Ilona Nikels (30) from Raalt is a hardworking mother of two young children, but she has to live on 50 euros a week. Her participation in a TV show turned her world upside down. The extra gift she then receives is the icing on the cake. “Truly a godsend.”

I participated Stone rich, street poor She traded her rented social home for a week for the spacious villa of two successful interior designers: Rod Schön (56) and Georg Pratt (45) from Zivenbergen. She also suddenly had 1,700 euros to spend. At the end of the episode, the rich couple decided to give Ilona a special gift.

Ilona lives with her 9-year-old son, Dimano, and 5-year-old daughter, Mila. During the week she works as a cashier at Jumbo. It was quite a change to suddenly spend a week in a luxury villa with pool, cinema and jacuzzi in Prinsenbeek.

Ilona with her son Dimano and her daughter Mila. © Ilona Nikhils

Well groomed

,, I prepared my children well to participate in the program and told them that they can do anything this week and that we can do anything they want. But then this is done and we have to watch our currencies again. They knew that and handled it very well. So switching wasn’t difficult, even though they missed the house and all the facilities,” she says, laughing.

This house looked like this (read more below the photos):

Rod Shawn and George Pratt
© Rod Shawn and George Pratt

George Pratt
© Jörg Pratt

The program shows how Ilona goes to buy new clothes with her children, goes on a day trip to an amusement park and visits the toy store.

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Looking back on the past week, she thinks it was an experience that takes a lot of energy, but she has no regrets. “You are constantly busy and have so many cameras around you. It really is an experience to live in such a big house and to see your kids enjoying themselves in such a different way. Especially since it is possible now.”

Hard reality for Rod and George

It was also a bit of a switch for Ruud and Jorg to suddenly manage a little too much. “It’s a moving train for us, in fact it becomes clear how you live. Your eyes will open after about a week. Reality is hard, because for her this will stay, we will be back in our house after a week,” says Jorg.

Jorg and Ruud are also happy when they can go home.
Jorg and Ruud are also happy when they can go home. © Jörg Pratt

And Ilona with her children watched the TV broadcast yesterday. “I let them stay up and it was good to see them again.”

Ilona hopes her sharing will let others know that no one is truly alone. “There is always help. I still see delicious things in my work and then think: yeah, I can’t do that. On the other hand, everything becomes more expensive for everyone. You’re not the only one.”

her message? ,,enjoy the life. Love is important enough. A warm and safe home is the most important thing. I wanted to show that by sharing.”

Tears of joy

Rod and George also had a special surprise for the mom of 30: “To give you a really big boost, we’ll make sure you take an interior design course,” they said. Because even though it’s not very spacious, Ilona loves all things interior design.

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Ilona enjoys a day at the amusement park with her son and daughter.
Ilona enjoys a day at the amusement park with her son and daughter. © Ilona Nikhils

So I received the gift with tears of joy. “It was really cool. I wasn’t expecting it at all,” says Ilona. Jorg: It’s easy to give something like a sofa or new wallpaper a try because we’ve always been in the interior design department, but we just didn’t want to. We want to get her out of welfare by giving her a good education so she can move forward.”

Although the recordings were in August last year, Rod and Jorg are still in contact with Ilona. “We are following her and will continue to do so. She can always call us if she needs us too in the future. We really hope it works out, but she is a fighter so we think it will work.”

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