The roads travelled for work - Women Migrant Workers in Singapore and Malaysia
At a day centre in downtown Singapore, a group of Indonesian domestic workers find time on their one day off to learn how to sew, Sunday 26, 2017. Rini Susanti (center), a domestic worker from Indonesia is making a dress as part of a sewing training course. Domestic workers in Singapore usually only get one day off from work, and on that day are often found at a number of places in Singapore furthering their educations, participating in educational forums, or engaging in some other activity, shopping, or spending time with friends. In this way they are always learning to get the most out of their time away from home.
These trainings and outreach are part of a programme called "Coming Home, Reintegration of Migrant Domestic Workers in the Philippines", supported by UN Women's Fund for Gender Equality. The 2016-2019 programme, run by Atikha Overseas Workers and Communities Initiatives, a Philippine non-governmental organization, works with overseas workers in Hong Kong and Singapore, two favored destinations for domestic workers from the Philippines. As of September 2017, Atikha had trained 600 of the women how to manage their incomes and plan their return home.
Atikha found that while most migrant domestic workers in Hong Kong spend eight years there working six days a week, they still did not have enough savings to return home. For those who did manage to save and fly back, 70 per cent of their new businesses ended up failing.
The workshops in Singapore include: Family and Income Management, Reintegration Planning, Investment in Business and Entrepreneurship.
Photo: UN Women/Staton Winter