THE BLOG
03/06/2015 08:48 BST | Updated 02/06/2016 06:59 BST

Talking Journalism Opportunities With the 'English Guy' Reporting The News In Canada, Kristiaan Yeo

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UK emigration rates have been dropping steadily since 2010 according to Migration Observatory. While hundreds travel to make a new life on British shores from across Asia, Europe and Africa, one man decided to head the other direction.

Award winning journalist Kristiaan Yeo swapped life in London, England for Canada in 2013.

Yeo had spent time plying his trade at Sky, ITV, BBC and Global Radio and like so many young British broadcasters he struck out in an effort to get on-air and in front of a camera to report the news.

He shares some of his extraordinary journey with Huffington Post and encourages other Britons to step forward and cross the pond.

Q1. Why a media career in Canada?

Simply put, I got a fantastic opportunity. Getting the chance to cover a country as vast as Canada for a growing TV network was too good to miss. I was doing well as a freelance reporter and producer in London, but it was difficult to spot the next rung on the ladder when so many journalists above me were clinging to their jobs for dear life. Every newsroom seemed to be facing cutbacks. It's a depressing adjustment facing traditional media in the UK right now. I was keen to try something new and North America had always appealed.

Q2, Best and worst experiences?

The initial move was both a thrill and an ordeal. I'd never been to North America for so much as a holiday, but I flew to Toronto with two suitcases and a 10-day deadline to set-up a bureau and start filing packages. I had to hire a cameraman, find an office and order all the necessary kit. We flew by the seat of our pants for the first couple of weeks.

I've got amazing memories of walking with polar bears in northern Manitoba and exploring a deserted mining town on the British Columbia coastline. I've met some incredible people on my travels and been privileged to tell their fascinating stories to our audience.

Q.3 What do you miss most about UK?

Marmite, M&S and proper chip shop chips, obviously. And of course, being close to family. I took for granted how nearby everyone and everything was before I left. When I do get time in the UK now, I treat it like a holiday and see as much of the country as possible. I still watch Question Time and Have I Got News For You every week, so I guess I can't live without my regular dose of Westminster muck and scandal.

Q4. What advice would you have for young UK journalism grads?

Be on the look out for exciting new ventures or media projects and get involved from the ground up. Being a founding member means you're more likely to whizz up the ranks once the operation is up and running. Prove your usefulness, demonstrate your talent and carve out a craft for yourself. Don't be afraid to look beyond the UK. Learning another language has never been more prudent. Fluency in Spanish, French or German opens up a lot of opportunities, in the UK, elsewhere in Europe and places like Latin America. If getting experience abroad interests you, working holiday visas are a great way to access the work market in another country.

Yeo is a 2007 graduate of Staffordshire University and turned 29 in mid April. He is currently a senior correspondent for CCTV, China Central Television, China's state broadcaster. Kristiaan primarily reports on business issues for CCTV America's nightly newscast - Biz Asia America. Making history one report at a time, he is the first and only English-language resident correspondent to cover Canada for Chinese state television