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High-level visit showcases Thai town working to end human trafficking

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

At first glance, Chiang Khong is like any other town in northern Thailand. Lined with hotels and restaurants, the river offers passersby a glimpse of Lao PDR on the other side. A bridge connecting the two countries means a steady flow of trade and travelers. But 20 years ago, Nunnaree Luangmoi confronted a major problem in the town: pervasive human trafficking and violence against women and girls.

Journeys out of the Ordinary | Bunga

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

I first decided to go abroad to work because I was separated from my husband and wanted to support my mother, my siblings and my young son. I found a job announcement on Facebook for work overseas as a waitress in Malaysia, and I contacted the person who placed the announcement. The job looked legitimate. There were administrative requirements and procedures, and I had to provide certificates and even a sponsor letter from the head of my village. I was told that I could go in two months.

Journeys out of the Ordinary | Yati

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Before I migrated, my husband gambled, and we were in debt because of it. People kept saying that I could earn a lot by working abroad, and they encouraged me to go. I thought maybe it could solve all our problems. My daughter was four at the time. I worked as a domestic worker in Malaysia, imagining that I would earn a good sum of money and build a house back home. I thought, “I'll have a good employer who will treat me well”.

Journeys out of the Ordinary | Jejen

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Like many other women migrant workers, family was my motivation to migrate. My husband had no regular income and was not paid well enough to support our two children, my sisters and our sick father. I migrated to Qatar to work as a domestic worker. When I first arrived in Qatar, I felt like I was walking into darkness. I also thought that that was normal, however, and it was okay to feel that way.

Journeys out of the Ordinary | Namwaan

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

I left Myanmar to go to Thailand 16 years ago because I wanted to have a better job and better wages. I could do many tasks, but there was no job in my village in Kayin State that provided enough income for me to support my family. At the time, information about migration was not as easy to find as it is today, especially in my small village.

Journeys out of the Ordinary | Ida

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Like most people, earning money was my motivation to go work overseas. My first job was in Malaysia and it was not a good experience, but I lasted three years with the same employer. The second time I left was for different reasons. My husband had been unfaithful, and when I confronted him, he beat me. We divorced and he took my children from me. I thought my life couldn’t get any worse, but then my husband’s best friend raped me. I didn’t report it because I knew I would be the one who was judged.

Journeys out of the Ordinary | Nurhayati

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

I was the first person in my family to go and work abroad and I was excited and eager to help my parents build a house with the money. I went to Saudi Arabia in 2003 and worked there for three years as a domestic worker. My employers were kind to me, but after a year the younger brother of the employer came home from college, and he started to harass me and touch me. And then he raped me. I told my employers, but they didn’t believe me. And I couldn’t leave because they had...

Journeys out of the Ordinary | Tasini

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

People tell me not to think about what happened. They say that it won’t help to think about it and that I should be strong and try to be happy like before. I know they mean well, but it will take some time before I can forget about the physical abuse I experienced when I was abroad. It will take some time before I can forget about having to sleep on a cold cement floor that caused my body to ache constantly. My employers beat me, and my body is covered in the evidence of that cruelty.

Journeys out of the Ordinary | Carina

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

After my husband and I separated, life was hard for me and my children, so I decided to go abroad to work. It was painful leaving my children, but I didn’t know how else to take care of them. I was a domestic worker in Dubai, for a Libyan family. It was a good job, and the family was good to me. Then one day the son in this family came home in the middle of the day, which was unusual. He was with a friend and no one else was home. I didn’t think much of it at first and went to tidy up, and...

Journeys out of the Ordinary | Abegail

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

My journey started when a woman in my village connected me and several other women to a “recruitment agency” offering waitressing jobs in Malaysia. We were brought to Manila, to “process our paperwork”. Some of the women were actually minors, and when some of us didn't have money for the “processing fees”, the recruitment agency said that they would cover all of the expenses and that it would be deducted from our salary when we started to work in Malaysia. My younger sister was with me,...

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