Fun for 300 at charities' first sports day for maids

A captain's ball match in progress at the sports day organised by Aidha and Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics.
A captain's ball match in progress at the sports day organised by Aidha and Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics.ST PHOTO: NG SOR LUAN

Free event by Aidha and Home to mark International Domestic Workers' Day

Ms Marilyn Orit, 39, wore a huge smile on her face as she and 60 other maids took part in a zumba class yesterday morning, jiving and shimmying to the latest dance hits.

The Filipina was among some 300 foreign maids who turned up for the inaugural sports day for domestic workers organised by charities Aidha and the Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics (Home).

"I am excited for today, and really want to join the ball games later on," said Ms Orit, who has been working in Singapore for four years.

The sports day, which was free for all participants, featured games such as futsal and an obstacle course. All domestic helpers present received door gifts from sponsors.

About half of the maids who took part in yesterday's activities are members of Home, while the rest are from Aidha, though non-members also joined in the fun.

Aidha chief executive Jacqueline Loh said the event was held at the United World College Campus because the charity has a good working relationship with the school and has conducted lessons there for years.

Representatives of the Myanmar, Philippine and Indonesia embassies were guests yesterday.

Said Ms Loh: "This day is to commemorate International Domestic Workers' Day, so I think that it is wonderful to celebrate that with domestic workers and those who care about them, which include the embassies and organisations like Home and Aidha.

"Also, the theme of the day is 'coming together', so it's great to see the energy and enthusiasm from everyone coming together today."

The annual International Domestic Workers' Day fell on June 16 this year.

Indonesian maid Rara Angriani, who has been working here for six years, is an Aidha member. She invited seven friends, two of whom are not members of the charity, to join in yesterday's activities.

She played futsal, ran an obstacle course and played a mini-game about zombies.

"I feel great about today because it is rare to have these types of activities," said Ms Rara, 30.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 09, 2018, with the headline 'Fun for 300 at charities' first sports day for maids'. Print Edition | Subscribe