Unburden Me, Modern Slavery (Painting)
“Unburden Me. The title I choose for her because I heard too much agony…too much that she almost beg me to unburden all her pain and sadness.”
This painting is one of the most painful and emotional work that I painted and writing this makes me so emotional. I was supposed to work on a very big project; painting 20 portraits of residents of Bethune House. These were not only portraits of pain and agony but a portrayal of struggle and fighting for their basic human rights. I promised them that I’m going to hide their identities and who can better understand their feelings than me who experienced the life they live. Yes, I am not a spectator, a participant, a campaigner…I too am the subject.!
I managed to finish one painting and then memories come flooding back. I needed to divert my attention to some other subject. It was more than a decade since I left Bethune house but the women there have become my family and Bethune house became a big part of my life. I wish the modern slavery in this world would end! I hope the Philippine government could create more jobs for my countrymen so they don’t need to seek jobs and risk their lives abroad.
For those who have helper at home, I asked you to please treat them kindly. They are human beings too, no less or more than you. Just like you they have feelings and get tired. They have families who depend on them. It is not hard to be kind, it doesn’t cost you anything to show mercy but why is it hard to treat them justly? Why is it easier to hurt them that show mercy and love? Are they less than human in your eyes?
Christmas is in the air around the world and people are in the festive mood of giving love and gifts. Let us not forget those who make your life easier, those who made your schedule lighter, those have cared for your children and old parents because of your busy work schedule. Let us not forget through them, impossible things become possible. Count them as your blessings and share your blessings with them!
Merry Christmas and happy 2015! Love & blessings!
Bethune House is a home away from home…a temporary shelter registered as a charitable institution in Hong Kong. Established in 1986 under the Mission for Migrant Workers to provide a safe refuge and social counselling to Asian women migrant workers in distress as they seek justice.