A tribute to the migrant worker

They come from far and wide – from every province, neighbouring country and beyond. They come to Gauteng to work in the mines, factories, construction sites, restaurants, hotels and homes; often for minimum, menial wages.

These people keep the wheels turning; the economy alive and yet are often shunned in the communities where they reside while in Gauteng.

Many of them don’t get to see their families for the entire year; they send money home every month to support extended families and they still save every last cent for Christmas so that they can take supplies and goodies back to their loved ones.

Their children will not get expensive toys and gadgets for Christmas but may get new clothes, shoes and maybe even stationery for school.

Today when I was at the garage (gas station), mini buses with over loaded trailers, queued to fill up before taking tired but excited and happy people home for Christmas.

 

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21 thoughts on “A tribute to the migrant worker

    1. It amazes me how, as you say, they smile through the hardships. If we don’t have our favourite breakfast cereal, we complain and yet they are glad to have something tomeat before going off to work. Bitter sweet memories, no doubt?

  1. Makes me think of the US Christmas movie “The Homecoming”… about a father in the Depression traveling from his job far away and spending all his paycheck to give his family a Christmas.
    PS… I liked the previous blog theme! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  2. Like many people in the past, their determination will be rewarded by the accomplishments of the next generation… and they know that in their bones.

  3. Great post Jacquie – I’ve seen that sight of loaded trailers so often, but it never ceases to move something in me. I think one of the saddest things in our communities today is our attitude towards foreign nationals.

    1. Thanks Don. I try to imagine the excitement of those waiting for them back home, counting the hours until they’re together again, to see what mom or dad have brought with them. It must be a very special time of the year. I hope that one day we can get past the xenophobia but I think that won’t happen while unemployment is so high.

  4. Thank you for paying tribute to the migrants workers. We are millions if not billions out there who have to leave our families in hope for a better life. I have seen so many who had to leave their kids, husbands, wives so they can give them education and simple comports like food and clothing. Basic stuff that other countries are in surplus. Merry Christmas to you and your family.

  5. I have had experience in Nigeria when migrant workers came all the way even from Ghana.I saw in them a smile ,despite their hardships,never seen by me before.Hardships make a man to stand the test of time!

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