Preparing for the New Year: Encouraging your Migrant Domestic Workers to Plan for their Future
With another year drawing to a close, it's the perfect time to reflect and set goals for the new year!
Living thousands of miles apart from their loved ones and immersing in a culture vastly different from their own, Migrant domestic workers have been creating brighter futures for their children and family – as well as ours – for more than 50 years in Hong Kong. Some spend up to decades toiling in HK, selflessly remitting money back to their families every month without giving much thought about their own wellbeing and retirement plans.
Besides rewarding our MDW year-end bonuses and gifts for the upcoming festive season, why not consider the empowering gift of encouraging her to plan for her future?
Planning and setting goals may not come naturally for some MDWs. Make it interesting and relatable by sharing stories and perhaps your own experiences. Look for success stories of other MDWs to share with your MDW to inspire her.
Identify the Type of Goals
Goal-setting does not have to be complex and overwhelming. For beginners, it might be more manageable to categorise the goals as:
- Personal (eg. fitness, education, love and relationship)
- Financial (eg. paying off a bank loan, saving for children's college funds and retirement funds)
- Family (eg. supporting spouse in a small business, planning for a second child)
Besides listing the goals down, encourage your MDW to take time to think how she could take action and make these plans become a reality!
It would be helpful to think of goals not in isolation, but how they affect one another. For instance, if your MDW wishes to have a child in the next couple of years it would be helpful to consider how this could affect her other personal and financial goals; and work out how this could be possible with good planning and support from her partner and family.
Use These Practical tips
Your MDW could use this guide- specifically written for MDWs – to help her plan and achieve their goals: https://blog.helperchoice.com/achieve-your-goals-tips/
If your MDW is looking for enrichment and empowerment opportunities in the new year, she could consider some of the programmes offered by NGOs in HK:
- PathFinders: Leadership development and empowerment programme by being a PathFinders Ambassador (www.pathfinders.org.hk)
- Enrich: Financial & Empowerment Education Programmes for MDW (www.enrichhk.org)
- Uplifters: Online courses for MDW (www.uplifters-edu.org)
- EmpowerU: Online and on-site courses for MDW (www.empoweru.io)
- Splash Foundation: Free 12-week beginning learning programme for MDW (www.splashfoundation.org)
Whether your MDW is young or older, she would greatly benefit from the wisdom of thinking beyond the daily grind and setting goals for her future. As employers, it's indeed gratifying to be able to encourage our MDWs to take the first step towards a more fulfilling and purposeful life!