Cerita Buruh Migran Launch and Screening

by Dhyta Caturani January 14, 2013
Cerita Buruh Migran (Migrant Workers Stories) Launch and Screening was our last event of the year, but definitely not the least!


In March 2012, supported by Tifa, EM started working with Indonesian migrant workers to increase their capacity in video making and distribution to support their campaign. We conducted workshops in Malaysia, Indramyu and Cianjur. After the workshops, we left the participants to produce videos. In 3 months time, we received 11 videos from them!

In the evening of December 20th, we had the honor to launch and screen the DVD Compilation. The event was held at KontraS, and despite the pouring rain, around 100 people showed up at the event. It was a full house that the room could not accommodate everyone, so some of the guests had to stand up in front of the door and followed the whole event. The evening was started with dinner and opened by the Master of Ceremony, Rifqi, a local rapper whose songs mostly have social and environmental messages, which fit the whole purpose of the event. Then I, on behalf of EM, took the pleasure to explain about the project.

"Indonesian migrant workers contributed a huge amount of remittance to the country every year and therefore they are often   referred to as Pahlawan Devisa (heroes of foreign exchange), but they have never been treated the way heroes should be treated. In the contrary the often face abuses and violation at home and abroad. The real stories of migrant workers are rarely being told fairly by the mainstream media, therefore we think it is the time for them to tell their own stories to the world using videos."

Following my explanation, Heti, an ex-migrant worker who was abused and sexually assaulted by her boss, came up to the mic and told the audience about her experience in the workshop and making videos.

Six videos were shown and received good responses from the audience.

"I think this is a good idea. We need to learn how to do it to spread the message of our struggle," said one of the guests who happened to be a fisherman from Serang, West Java.

After watching the videos, which were mostly emotionally draining, the guests were entertained by an acoustic performance and continued with Rifqi rapping accompanied by a DJ.

The event ended at 9 PM but we hope that the effect of the message stays.