IMPACT 0113: REDISCOVERING SINGAPORE WITH MIGRANT WORKERS
Jaslyn Tan, 25, works as a radiation therapist in a hospital, specifically working with cancer patients. She believes in giving back to the community whenever it is within her means and rallying people through encouragement to do the same.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, she partnered with Migrant x Me, a non profit social organisation that works with migrant workers providing them with support, to use the #SingapoRediscover vouchers to bring our migrant friends on an adventure. She shares more about her experience.
During most days, I work at a hospital as a radiation therapist treating cancer patients. But just like many others, when night falls, I enjoy feasting with friends, working out or just staying home to watch shows.
This was my daily routine until one night, I had an idea of how to make better use of our #SingapoRediscover vouchers that the government was giving out to promote local tourism. At that time, the number of COVID-19 cases in local migrant workers’ dormitories was very high.
That night, I came across Migrant x Me, a non-profit social organisation that works with migrant workers. They were raising awareness of the situation in the dorms. And I thought to myself, “Let’s share the privileges we get that these workers don’t get to enjoy.”
I mustered up courage and reached out to Migrant x Me if they were interested to partner with me to bring some “migrant brothers”, as we call them, out for a field trip using these vouchers. They said yes, and the project came alive from there.
Using my Instagram account, I asked if anyone would like to sponsor a migrant brother with their #SingapoRediscover vouchers.
The responses I received were so overwhelming that I raised four times the target! We could run two trips with all our tickets upgraded. Then I dreamt a little bigger and asked, again on Instagram, for some funds to buy dinner for our migrant brothers. Within an hour, I raised $400. The experience was truly divine and that was when I realised that there are so many out there who yearn and love to do good.
I had the greatest honor to spend two respective afternoons with our migrant brothers at Gardens By The Bay and the Trick Eye Museum at Sentosa. Amazingly, two of them shared that they had helped build the conservatories at the Gardens! They were so grateful to be able to visit as guests this time.
On our excursions, the migrant brothers took countless photos and videos and even called their families in their home countries to savour the moment together. Many meaningful conversations took place as well, such as their experiences as foreign workers, their struggles living here and the pain of leaving home.
Learning all of this did a deep work in me, showing me that we are not meant to live this life in our own bubble. It was truly a humbling experience to be able to appreciate them for their sacrifices and hard work in building our nation.
I think many of us would love to give back and do good but are unsure of how or where to begin. I encourage you to be brave and take the first step to ask for organisation partnerships! The rest of the plan will follow.
Here’s sending some courage your way.
This article was published on Aug 21, 2021