ALLIANCE OF INDIAN MINISTRIES I-CARE
There are more than 250,000 transient workers living in Tuas, mostly comprising of Indians, Bangladeshis and Sri Lankans from South Asia. Many of them have left their families back home in search of better opportunities. Even though many earn as little as $800 a month, it is still more than what they would have received elsewhere.
One of the greatest struggles they face is Integration into Singaporean society. Most of these workers come from a rural and conservative environment, and thus find it very hard to adapt to the cosmopolitan and modern Singaporean lifestyle. The Alliance of Indian Ministries (AIM) plans to work with them and help them to integrate into society through the provision of social support networks and structures.
Another difficulty the workers face is the lack of an avenue for Communication. Leaving one’s family to work in a foreign land can be overwhelming for many. Loneliness and depression can creep in, and many turn to alcohol and other substances as coping mechanisms. AIM hopes to provide a platform for transient workers to communicate through counselling and fellowship in small groups.
The third area AIM plans to focus on is Assistance. The plan is to provide interim humanitarian assistance and aid for transient workers who may be distressed as a result of their untenable living conditions and unfair treatment.
The forth area that AIM looks to focus on is Representation. Many of these workers experience difficult situations, whereby they are disadvantaged and are unable to stand up for themselves. Some have not been paid for months, and others were simply sent back home without compensation after sustaining injuries on the job. AIM plans to help these brothers by advocating for a resolution over these issues and asserting the rights of transient workers.
The last area that AIM plans to focus on is Empowerment. This entails equipping transient workers with knowledge and skills that may open the doors for better work opportunities for them, such as basic computer skills and spoken English.
AIM plans to champion Integration, Communication, Assistance, Representation and Empowerment for the transient workers residing in and around the Tuas area. Putting these five key points together, you will get the acronym, I-CARE, the name of their new initiative. The AIM I-CARE is an opportunity for us to be a blessing to these transient workers.