Free Software Job Advice

Hello everybody,

I'm looking for advice on making a living from working on Free Software.

I already read articles, send my CV to various companies, but I found
nothing. So I decided to ask here, hoping this question isn't too
inappropriate for this list.

I'm a software engineering student in first year (out of 4), from
I've been coding in C++ using GNU and Gnome technologies, and I'm
familiar with the GTK/gtkmm, libxml++, etc. I do need to refresh my
knowledge of GObject, but certainly I can write code and contribute to
existing projects (or work on my own project, which I've been doing for
the past 9 months).

The problem is that I need to make a living somehow. Not just as a
student, but also later, as an engineer. I don't need much, just make a
living and do what I believe in: work on free software and promote
software freedom.

In Israel nobody cares about free software (they call it open source,
and it's just a way to save money), so after failing to find such a job
here, I sent CV to companies in Europe. I realize I'm a student, I have
no formal coding education, I have no proven experience (none of my code
has reached the stage an initial version can compile, yet) but source
files themselves... but I do want to contribute. The only reason I don't
work on Gnome projects is that my free time is spent working on my own
project, which will hopefully be a useful desktop app when it's ready
(probably until the end of the summer).

I realize all that, but I don't want to give up and accept the fact I
can't do anything for free software. I do have skills, I do have
knowledge. My current project has 7000 lines of code (not much for a
serious project, I know, but it's a lot for me as a student working
alone) written by myself from scratch, using GNU Build System, gtkmm,
libxml++, libsigc++.

Isn't there a way I can make a living with the skills I do have? I do
want to help, and I don't need much in return, I just want to make a
living. To pay my rent, to pay for my food... I'm sure my skills can be
useful to someone. With a free software project.

If you can help me or give advice, I'll be thankful.

- AAnatoly Krasner

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