Meet our alumni, Freda Payod. Freda is from Eastern Samar, Philippines. She has been working in Singapore for almost 11 years and has 3 children ages 26, 22 and 14. Here are some interesting facts about her from our interview.

“When I was young, I dreamed of becoming a lawyer but I wasn’t able to achieve it because of poverty. I also dreamed of becoming a successful restaurateur or owning a grocery store. One of my favourite memories is selling different products during my younger days. I used to help my mother in making different crafts like mirrors coated with seashells and curtains made from bamboo and shell. I had a small “sari-sari store” when I was in the Philippines and I would make ice packs every day to sell to our neighbours. It helped pay our electric and water bills for a month.

But life was hard for me since I did not have other sources of income so I decided to work abroad in order to support my children. My first few years were not easy because of homesickness and I did not have a day off during my two years with my first employer. I am happier now as I have the chance to uplift myself through courses offered to domestic workers. I am proud to say that I was able to finish the Hotel and Restaurant Care course in 2016 and Basic Dressmaking in 2019. Currently, I am taking Computer and Advance Dressmaking courses during my day off.

I learned about Uplifters through a Foreign Domestic Workers’ group and I decided to join their online course because I wanted to learn new ideas on how to improve my life.

Before Uplifters, I was easily discouraged and thought I was not brave enough to face life. However, one story from the Dare to Dream course inspired me to stop listening to negative criticism from other people.

The course helped me learn how to manage my money well and say no to people in a nice way. The courses of Uplifters differ from other classes because they really helped me to be motivated in pursuing my goals.

Thank you so much to Uplifters for all the knowledge that you imparted to us.

To my fellow migrant domestic workers, I encourage you to use your day off wisely and spend it on activities that can be beneficial to you and your future. There is no age limit to learning.”