Our Engagement Team visited Dibashram, a space for migrant workers. We spoke to Mr AKM Mohsin, who manages Dibashram and is also the chief-in-editor for Singapore Bengali Newspaper, Banglar Kantha (The Voice of Bengal). Our engagement intern, De Jun reports.
Writing has always been viewed as a powerful tool for one to reflect and mature. In tandem with our Writing from the Heart workshops this December, TheatreWorks will be organising a special writing session for the migrant workers at Dibashram on Sunday, 7 December.
On 1 June 2014, Tony Perez conducted a special writing session consisting of visualisation exercises, dialogues for a group of 25 Filipino Domestic Workers from TWC2, allowing them to reflect and address issues they face. The workshop was successful in providing alternatives and means for coping with their situation.
This new writing session seeks to engage the Bangladeshi workers from Dibashram, harnessing potential creativity from them, and at the same time to reflect and discuss important issues related to living in Singapore, since every one of them all have an untold story, undelivered thoughts and emotions, buried within them.
With limited outlets available to deal with such issues faced, Mohsin and company has been seeking different ways and approaches to help these Bangladeshis workers through weekly workshops and drama performances.
The Agent & The Legal Assistant Production Poster
Dibashram have also begun to deepen their interests in other forms of writing. Mohsin said during an interview after the Migrant’s Workers Poetry Contest, “Writing gives the migrant workers a sense of empowerment. It is also a healthy way for them to spend their weekends.”
During their usual weekends, the Bangladeshi workers are encouraged to write, and most of them challenge themselves to write anything under the sun, be it love, life, work experience, contemporary problems, even political issues in Dhaka and the Singaporean & Bangladeshi community. Those new to journalism will receive guidance from their experienced counterparts. Upon further editing and formatting by Mohsin, their articles will then be published in Banglar Kantha.
“Gladden the heart of humans ★ Feed the hungry ★ Help the afflicted ★Lighten the sorrows of the sad & Remove the sufferings of the injured
With a wealth of experience and a sensitive approach, Tony Perez seek to address their innermost feelings, allowing them to face their problems with courage at ease. He encourages them to surface these negative emotions through writing and teaches them “when to deliver the right blows—emotional, psychological and spiritual”. This group has prior writing experience with some contributing to the monthly Bengali newspaper publication.
Interested in signing up for Writing from the Heart? Sign up for the full Writing from the Heart workshop from 1 Dec – 6 Dec.
To register, please contact Brendan Tan at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 6737-7213.
Dibashram Website: http://dibashram.com/
Dibashram Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Dibashram