January 21, 2010

Look Mum's Neglecting Me!

Many parents have to bring their children to their workplace. They are the ones who do not have support from grandparents or good neighbours. Nurseries tend to be only for the educated and working professionals. So here is a little girl who has to follow her mother to work and mother just cannot do better than this. Bo ban huat (Cannot be helped or no way..)

It has always been a very traditional albeit bittersweet kind of lifestyle when women tie their babies to their back while they collect pepper or tap rubber. Many of own relatives were put in a box when they were young while their parents were planting padi or digging fish ponds according to the stories they told. My own uncles and aunts would leave their small children at home in the bedrooms while they tapped rubber early in the morning. Grandma would get ready some breakfast when they woke up. By eleven a good day's work was done and the adults would be home. And then another set of chores would be carried out.

Here you see a small girl dressed up nicely sitting on a small stool watching her mother sell her jungle produce at the tamu. I believe it is unthinkable for the mum to spend money on nursery.

May be the Municipal Conncil could think of a volunteer service for such children in a nearby space. May be the government can think of a small funding to help establish good nurseries for poor parents who are enterprising and hardworking like this girl's mother so that Malaysian children from all backgrounds can have equal opportunities.

In China government nurseries were established to enable all Chinese women to "contribute to the fast economic growth of the New China". In the 60's and 70's Chinese kids grew up to be Little Red Guards and nationalistic.

Life could become more complicated and difficult if the economy does not fare well.


Ghosty Nana said...

Sometimes bad economy forced many people not afford to pay for nursery. Recently, a kid fell off from high building, when the mother left the kid alone at home. Bringing kids to work, is better than leaving the kid alone at home.

Jay said...

Your article Rubber sheet really touch me. You know i was thinking of writting this long ago but didn't have much time. Actually there are a lot of ideas in my mind but i just couln't find time to write on blog.
In my young day, rubber sheet my the only sole income to my family as we are poor and that all we have to earn a living. Our sibling during school holiday went to tape rubber then sell it when school reopen. Anyway that great experiences and hard earning has brought me grown as what we are now. Thank to my parent and grandparent for having the courage to plant rubber tree at that time. now those tree are almost extinct.

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Ghosty Nana
thanks for visiting. Yeah...when circumstances force mothers to do desperate things it is better for them to bring the kids to work and hope that others can understand.

We do often here of disasters happening to latch key kids....

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Dear Jay
When I was very young my uncles and aunts and my grandmother depended on rubber tapping too...in Sg. Maaw.

Life was hard but the land was valueable. However later secondary occupation helped us all to move upwards.....

May God bless you and your family abundantly.

Do try slowly to write. You have stories in your heart. I know it.

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