Reflections towards our
foreign migrant workers
By Herbert Ong
Herbert, one of our volunteers participated in a community wellness programme organised by JTC Corporation for the foreign migrant workers last year. He shared about his takeaways and reflections from the event.
When it comes to circuit breaker (CB) measures, what comes to your mind? Many of us have mixed thoughts and feelings that can range from loss of freedom, restricted movements, only essential services allowed, lots of screen time (an understatement), unable to meet your extended families and friends amongst others; and major changes to our routine lifestyles and penned up frustrations. To our relief, these CB measures had eased for us after one month. Now, imagine if you had to go through this for an extended period of five months? Well, that was what happened exactly to many of our foreign migrant workers that could not resume work and go out freely on their rest days.
Reaching Out to the Migrant Workers
Thankfully, some respite came for 33 of the foreign migrant workers on 1 November. Cornerstone Community Services (CCS) was invited by JTC Corporation to conduct a wellness programme at one of their temporary dormitories. A group of CCS volunteers and staff got together within a short span of five days prior to the event to organise a series of fun-filled activities to meaningfully reach out to these workers. All the planned activities and necessary Safe Management Measures were promptly submitted for JTC’s approval before the event.
Team Games & Photo Booth
On the day of the event, we started with an introductory session and the workers were organised into different groups for the activities. Team games such as Captain’s Ball and Musical Chairs (using their homefolks music) were also organised to allow them to cultivate teamwork, foster a healthy competitive spirit and enjoy a good physical workout in a fun manner. A photo booth with props was also available for them to take photographs with polaroid as memorabilia, with some of them sending the pictures back home to their family and loved ones. We were heartened that the workers warmed up to us and actively participated in these activities.
Without these foreign migrant workers who play an important role in building our national infrastructures, we would not be able to live comfortably in this country. Let’s appreciate and lend a helping hand to them whenever the opportunity arises.
A wellness talk was conducted by our volunteer, Nelson using the beautiful and inspiring workbook from “My Brother SG” to provide simple and useful tips to help them cope better with their emotional and psychological state of mind. At the end of the talk, we want to inspire them with hope and the feeling of being empowered to continue to pursue their dreams by encouraging them to pen down notes of gratitude on the postcards provided.
The event ended with distribution of goodie bags filled with daily necessities and a snack box with drink. The workers were very appreciative and thankful for the event.
There were a lot of takeaways from this event. I am thankful to God for having this wonderful opportunity to participate in this meaningful session despite COVID, and to YOLO Run for their kind sponsorship of shirts and drawstring bags for this event. Without these foreign migrant workers who play an important role in building our national infrastructures, we would not be able to live comfortably in this country. Let’s appreciate and lend a helping hand to them whenever the opportunity arises.