Stories

A Sense of Familiarity and Warmness

“I hope more Singaporeans would take notice that migrant workers like us travel miles to make a livelihood and appreciate our contribution”

Liu Yu Guang is a 45 year old migrant worker from Hebei, China.  Back home, he dropped out of primary school as it was too expensive for his family to pay for his education. He came to Singapore to work as a construction worker in order to support his two children, his wife, and his father who suffered an aneurysm 10 years ago. However, he had to pay $16000 in agency fees in order to come to Singapore.

On 28 May 2018, when he was at work, he was using a power drill, and injured his right hand. He tried to seek medical attention for his condition, and was informed that in order for his hand to regain mobility again, he would have to undergo surgery. However, due to complications, his employer was unwilling to pay for surgery. Thus, Yu Guang is currently under a Special Pass and is no longer able to work and send money back home his family. Instead, he is currently waiting to receive compensation under WICA, as well as the MC wages owed to him while doing physiotherapy.

In July, after his injury, Yu Guang was referred by one of his migrant brothers, Bao Long, to HealthServe, and is currently receiving aid in the form of casework support, meals, emergency funds, as well as MRT top ups. He talks about how Healthserve has helped him financially and provided him with a sense of familiarity and warmness since he can live with fellow migrants. He has also attended several outings organised by HealthServe, such as to Gardens by the Bay, and Labrador Park. Yu Guang also hopes that he will recover properly from his injury so that in the future he will be able to learn how to build houses better.

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