Stories

Lending a Helping Hand to Each Other

Li Ying Bin (50 years old) and Lu Shu Liang (42 years old) are migrant friends from Hebei, China. They met one another when they came to Singapore in January 2018 under the same construction employer. 

Li Ying Bin found out about HealthServe through a family friend in China, and met Jeffrey, one of our Caseworkers, when he went to China to visit migrant friends. In February 2018, Li Ying Bin contracted a work-related leg injury, and has been receiving assistance from HealthServe since April 2018.

On 19 June 2018, Li Ying Bin returned to his dormitory after a day at HealthServe when he saw a crowd at the construction area nearby. A Bangladeshi worker, who knew that Li Ying Bin and Lu Shu Liang were good friends, conveyed to him that Lu Shu Liang had fainted. Li Ying Bin reckons that this was due to overwork, as they had to work 6 days a week from 8am-9pm. Rest was not permitted, and they were threatened with no pay if they could not finish the construction work. 

Soon after, Lu Shu Liang was diagnosed with stroke, where he could no longer move the right side of his body. Li Ying Bin told the HealthServe team about Lu Shu Liang, enabling HealthServe to help raise funds him through Rays of Hope Initiative (ROHI). Initially, Lu Shu Liang was unable to speak, but has since recovered his voice. Gradually, Lu Shu Liang has also made improvements in his movement. Even though Lu Shu Liang has lost memory and does not remember the Li Ying Bin prior to his accident, Lu Shu Liang knows that Li Ying Bin is his friend as Li Ying Bin visits him twice a week, bringing him food and persevering in providing him support wherever possible.

“What I can do is only limited… I can only visit him and maybe, help him to find a lawyer. However, the case would be difficult to defend as he has a stroke,” Li Ying Bin said. He shared that prior to the stroke, Lu Shu Liang was very easy to get along with and they often ate together. He recounted that earlier in the year when he could not work owing to his serious leg injury, Lu Shu Liang, who resided in the same dormitory, would help to buy food for him. Lu Shu Liang shared with him that he was very physically tired from working, for which Li Ying Bin encouraged him to stop work and to return to China. 

Li Ying Bin shared insights that Lu Shu Liang worked very hard to earn money for his family – for the education and his sons’ future marriages, which come at a very high cost back at home. He expressed his worry for Lu Shu Liang’s family, as Lu Shu Liang has two sons, aged 16 and 14, and he is the sole breadwinner for the family.

Li Ying Bin expressed his hope that Lu Shu Liang would be able to receive money from his employer to return home to recover. As of mid-September 2018, he called their construction company to ask if the employer could discuss Lu Shu Liang’s return home face-to-face – yet, the person-in-charge rejected his request. As of September 2018, Li Ying Bin is still awaiting compensation from the same employer for his leg injury as well.

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