With the spread of COVID-19, domestic violence has emerged as a global social problem. This is because, ironically, the chances of domestic violence have increased as social distancing, movement restrictions, and self-isolation have become daily routines for people around the world to prevent infectious diseases. Thus, a house that is a safe space for some becomes a fence of violence for others. (https://www.seoul.co.kr/news/newsView.php?id=20200427016004)
Korea Women’s Hot Line is a civic organization operated by membership dues and donations, and has been engaged in activities to ensure and support women’s human rights against all types of violence against women, such as domestic violence, sexual violence, and stalking, and to create a gender-equal world.
According to the first survey on violence against women in Korea, released on August 26, 34.7% of respondents said that they had been victimized by violence against women at least once in their lives, of which 34.7% said that they had experienced violence in close relationships such as spouses or lovers. accounted for nearly half of the 46%.
The vicious cycle of domestic violence, domestic violence, runaways, and suicide reveals the contrast in Korean society that considers the ‘normal family’ as an utopia.
The character of Kofi is a composite of my family members who have experienced grief, living in the UK as members of the African diaspora. This character is a meditation on African stoicism, the shards of African fatherhood, and the deep-seated complexities rooted in losing a child in a foreign world.
As an actor, the character of Kofi has been an invitation for me to explore my own grief of losing my oldest brother, in a way which finds cultural resonance amongst African communities. My willingness, vulnerability and playfulness in exploring this character is partly due to the wonderful bereavement counselling I received from Grief Encounter, and many psychotherapy professionals, over the past three years.
Grief Encounter is a charity which works with young people, to help them come to terms with loss and live fulfilling lives. The support I received from them has been harnessed and channeled into the creative process. Kofi is a celebration of African hope, as much as he is an embodiment of my own resilience, which has been strengthened by Grief Encounter.
Please support and donate to their cause as much as you can, so that they can continue empowering young people to venture forth into life with joy, in the face of loss.
Burnout syndrome is an occupation condition that affects specially, but not solely, professions that involve care of others and it’s characterised by physical and emotional exhaustion. The example depicted in the show it’s just one of many ways it can become obvious, and it’s closely related to my personal experience with this condition as an NHS worker.
For that reason, I am also aware that there is a way to recover from it, as well as resources to help managing the areas that are contributing to the burnout. The first line is asking for professional help via NHS primary care. As the waiting lists can take time, I wish to link Mind.co.uk, a charity that provides resources to support your mental health. Mind also lists to different helplines for those who need to be listened to. In the case of needing urgent care or considering that your life might be in danger, please contact 999.
Finally, I would like to say that, whilst suffering stress and burnout, there is always hope and a way out. Do not hold it to yourself, seek help, talk to close people in your life or to health professionals. There’s always someone happy to help.
It all began with a google search on Chinese migrants in UK when I was researching for Becca and I encountered Liu En as a form of headlines and statistics of undocumented Chinese migrants in UK: 2000 Dover tragedy where 58 Chinese suffocated to death in a lorry trailer and 2004 Morecambe Bay tragedy where 23 undocumented Chinese workers working as cockle pickers drowned to death. The statistics of undocumented Chinese workers continue to rise in the current socio-political climate. A majority of undocumented Chinese workers came from Fujian, China, the hometown of my great grandparents and grandmother. I felt a pinch in my heart and knew that the story must be told. But the burden of representation is enormous given my place of privilege. Liu En is fictional composite character derived from accounts given by female Chinese undocumented migrants and I hope the portrayal has, to certain extent, done justice to their stories. Please continue to support the works of organizations that campaign for undocumented workers’ rights and welfare.
Minaxi’s character is named after and based on my grandmother. Although partially ficionalised, the essence of the character and her life reflect the reality of several women in India. Digging deeper into the system of patriarchal values, I realised oppression does not just come from external forces; it becomes an internalised and accepted way of being by women who, in turn, often continue the cycle from generation to generation.
Raj Uphar is a woman-run organisation in Gujarat, India that creates employment opportunities for tribal women who do not normally work outside their homes, as a way to build financial freedom which eventually helps them be more empowered within their families as well.
“Helping to Leave was launched on February 24th — the day when Russia invaded Ukraine
Within the first few weeks of the war in Ukraine, we set up a network of volunteers and the tech infrastructure required to manage information flow. Now, there are 200+ volunteers helping around 1000 people every day. We use AI systems to ensure our datasets reflect the reality on the ground.”
The genesis of this character Becca was the racist verbal abuses I received when I first arrived in London in 2021. Although those experiences thankfully didn’t escalate to anything violent, it was a strange subversion to my privilege as a Chinese majority in Singapore. In this project, I decided to delve deeper into my identity as a Singaporean Chinese and our colonial past, and what it means for me to be here in London, as a Singaporean. In the course of my research, I had come across startling reports of Asian hate crimes and recounts by the survivors of such attacks. The anger from the injustice is the driving force behind creating Becca, a character that hopes to seek ally and reparation with her songs and words. I hope you will continue to be an ally with Asians and support organizations that supports anti-Asian hate. If you or someone you know are survivors of hate crimes, help is around the corner.