Ladies of Faith – Hong Kong’s Philippine Domestic Helpers

“I pray to The almighty as well as the burdens about my heart will be lifted. ” I actually is visiting with a workers from the particular Philippines who have got gathered in addition to thousands of their countrywomen in Hong Kong’s Statue Square. There are groups enjoying each and every other’s company just about everywhere you look. Some are eating, visiting, playing cards, styling one another’s hair and trading love novels. Others happen to be praying, reading their particular Bibles and singing hymns. There are usually an estimated a hundred and twenty, 000 female employees from the Israel living in Hong Kong. Most are applied as maids for that city’s wealthy family members. These ‘helpers’ ( the common name for domestic employees in Hong Kong) are expected to function twenty four hrs per day, six days and nights weekly, but authorities regulations dictate that they must receive 14 consecutive hours involving free time every Sunday. Since the women cannot find the money for to go to movies or consume in restaurants upon their day away, they gather within Hong Kong’s train stations and leisure areas or outside general public buildings.

One On the morning I travelled down to typically the heart of Hong Kong’s business area to pay some period talking with the Filipino women in a key plaza there. A single group readily agreed to let myself take their photo and when I told them I seemed to be writing a tale for a magazine we were holding happy to respond to some questions.

The ten women I spoke with all come from the particular same rural area inside the Philippines. They work in homes within different parts of Hong Kong but about Sundays they meet at St. Joseph’s Cathedral located within the Central district. After mass, which usually St . Joseph’s celebrates in Tagalong, the particular language with the Korea, they gather upon the porch from the near by Hong Kong law surfaces building. They spread newspapers on the cement floor to sit down about, and then expend the afternoon ingesting and visiting. These people tell me they are devout Catholics and their faith in Our god is what assists them survive the separation from their own families within the Korea and the many times cruel and indifferent treatment of their very own employers. “I pray to God and the burdens about my heart are usually lifted” one female tells me with passion, as she lifting her hands and even eyes heavenward.

While we visit I discover some of the girls in the group have been right here for as little as a number of months while some possess lived in Hong Kong for as extended as twelve decades. 女傭公司 have young children at home and even are university knowledgeable. They are nurses, teachers, physiotherapists, pharmacists, computer programmers and even business women. They speak several languages. Nevertheless they can make 3 times more cash inside Hong Kong compared to they can practicing their professions in the Philippines. That they tell me they want money to shell out for their children’s education. “To provide our kids hope for the future”, a single woman says. All of them send a substantive portion of their income home to their families.

There are many church groups and companies in Hk which often seek to serve the Filipina girls working in the city. I chatted with Sue Farley who is on the board of directors for an outreach program operated by the American Baptist World Evangelism corporation. They open the particular premises of the area Bible College on Sundays hence the Philippine women can meet up with there and get part in Weekend School classes and a worship support. They have some sort of fulltime director, a new woman through the Philippines, who develops human relationships with the ladies who attend and acts as an advocate to them when necessary.

Not all employers treat their Filipino service personnel as they should. “They really have got incredible power more than the women” states Farley. She tells me that sometimes typically the domestic helpers have been completely taken advantage associated with by unscrupulous middlemen in the Thailand who charge all of them exorbitant prices intended for work visas and transportation to Hong Kong. As a result they arrive in typically the city already still to pay a large sum of money. Whenever they land up together with an employer who is not kind these people hesitate to record them to the particular authorities. They want to keep their job to pay back their particular travel loan in addition to send money house to their households who are relying on them. “It is not of which difficult for employers to break their very own contracts with Filipino women”, Farley explains to me. “And they can stay here inside of Hong Kong unless these people have full-time job. ” You can easily notice why often females tolerate the abuse of their employers rather than take legal action against them.

Farley tells us that some girls are sexually bothered. One maid confided she slips a new chair within the penis of the doorway in her area before going in order to bed, to keep her boss out there. Others aren’t because lucky since they have to sleep on the mat on the kitchen floor. A single of the Filipino women I spoken to said your woman sleeps on the floor involving the bedrooms of the kids in the home where she will be employed. That equal maid explained she is often famished. “I can simply eat what is left over after my employers have had dinner. “

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