Migrant Worker Left Jobless After 2 Failed Stints In Singapore Needs Help To Ward Off Debtors

Migrant workers have been in the spotlight recently, with majority of new Covid-19 cases coming from dormitories they stay in.

But they have been facing difficulties long before the virus outbreak, a heartbreaking example of which is the predicament of Alam, a migrant worker from Bangladesh.

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Having lost his job twice here, his struggle to make ends meet while warding off debtors has been nothing short of challenging.

Migrant worker lost job after company went out of business

While their numbers count in the thousands, not all migrant workers have it easy in terms of securing employment.

This, even after having to fork out money for an agent to first bring them to Singapore.

Once they’ve started earning, a large part of their income goes to clearing the agency fees first, leaving them with very little to live on.

Without any income, however, Alam was at a loss.

Image for illustration purposes only
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According to Mr Ethan Guo, General Manager of non-profit organisation (NGO) Transient Workers Count Too (TWC2) who helps workers like Alam, the Bangladeshi had come to Singapore to work twice and lost his job both times.

His first stint lasted only 8 months. His second in mid-2019 lasted only 3 months before his employer’s company went out of business.

A victim of circumstances, Alam found himself with no money to pay off his mounting debts.

Debtors attacked his son at home

Unfortunately, his financial challenges here weren’t his worst nightmares.

Before arriving in Singapore, he had borrowed money in Bangladesh for his journey here. His 2 trips to Singapore cost him $4,000 each, and he currently owes debtors $1,000.

Since he couldn’t repay the costs, they started hounding his family.

They allegedly sent gangsters to his home, who attacked his young son for standing up against them. Blows to his head left the boy with bloody wounds all over.

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The horrifying and heart-wrenching situation moved Mr Guo to start a Launch Good campaign on 1 Apr, to raise funds for Alam.

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With only 7 days left till the end of the campaign, he has successfully raised over $3,600 at the time of writing.

Apart from clearing his debts, Alam hopes to use the money for his college-going son’s education, so he can help lift the family out of poverty.

Help those in need during these difficult times

That the campaign is almost reaching its target well in advance is an encouraging sign of Singaporeans’ compassion.

This trying Covid-19 period has especially brought out the community spirit more than ever, so let’s continue helping in whatever way we can.

We hope Alam will be able to find work soon, and support his family adequately.

If you’d like to make a contribution, you can visit the campaign page here.

Featured image adapted from Launch Good.