Priya – Tricked Into Singapore at 14 Years Old

Voice for the Silenced

At 14, Priya was sold as a bride. Desperate to leave her abusive husband, Priya jumped at a job agent's offer to work in a dance studio in Singapore without realising she was tricked. Little did she know the nightmare that was awaiting her.

Arriving at Changi Airport, she was whisked off to a desolate house. All alone and afraid, she cried herself to sleep and woke up the next morning in the company of several other women, all cramped in the same quarters.

In the evening, the ladies were told to dress up and get ready for work. Priya found herself working in a night club, and was forced to have sex with customers. Kept under lock and key, the boss threatened and starved her into submission. Finally, in a desperate attempt, Priya, together with a few others, made a break for the key and escaped.

When Priya first came to HAGAR, her moods swung between depressive cries and angry outbursts. Four years now, Priya is conversant in English, smiles with confidence and is actively pursuing plans for her future.

Unable to speak the language in a foreign land, coupled with the threats from her boss about the police in Singapore, Priya was prisoner despite having access to help. Had Priya seen a help message in her native language, she might have had the courage to do something about her situation much earlier.

In collaboration with local leading designers and fashion artists, a series of scarves was designed, each carrying a message of hope that will speak to a victim in their native language. Pick out a scarf for a perfect gift and "Be A Voice for the Silenced", lending them courage to seek help from their exploitative situation. You could be a lifeline for a trafficking victim entrapped in exploitation.

Priya trafficked into Singapore.