We all know what has been going on at the US border for the past several weeks or so; from a migrant ‘caravan’ that started in Honduras to the struggles that they had to deal with along the way to the issues and reality they had to face upon reaching the US-Mexican border.
Yet well, the most common reasons why migrants leave their home countries are: 1) To escape persecution or violence, and 2) To have better opportunities. While many who are part of the caravan (or migrant crossers) are asylum seekers and therefore are looking to immigrate, it is actually the lowly contract workers who temporarily leaves their families for overseas work that faces a greater risk of being exploited or discriminated.
With that, let’s go through the basics on how to travel as a migrant.
Make sure your employment agency is legally recognized. Thus, check out the government offices responsible for the listing of recognized employment agencies.
Do not just pay fees, give away your documents or sign anything if you have not thoroughly verified the agency and the job offer. Make sure you understand ‘everything’ there is.
Secure your passport and other travel documents only from the Department of Foreign Affairs, or government agencies and authorized offices that is responsible for such. Avoid fixers.
Do not bring anything or agree to bring something that you do not really know of or is, otherwise, prohibited.
Try to familiarize yourself with the language and culture of your destination beforehand. Likewise, be sure to know where your country’s consulate office is and make them know you’re there.
Contact whoever you know who lives or works in your country of destination in advance if possible. More than having someone to keep you from being lonely, this would ease your transition to your new environment – from knowing where the market, hospital and everything is to digesting the cost of living.
Live and work in peace. Follow the laws. Respect the culture. Be friendly and build good, healthy relationships.
Make sure you brought all your proper identification papers and pertinent documents – and be sure to keep them safe and ready.
Be responsible for the person(s) and things you brought with you, as well as the people you are with (remind them to be respectful).
Do not vandalize, destroy properties, abuse the environment or leave trash on wherever you may transit.
Do not just barge in or illegally enter your country of destination but follow their asylum process and laws.
Be productive and do everything necessary to positively adapt to the place you are in. Be that model citizen.
We are all citizens of this world. Never exploit anyone or anything, but do what it takes to make travel and migration safe and orderly.
You must have heard about it already – an American missionary was believed to have been killed by one of the most isolated tribes in world – the Sentinelese.
This tribe who has a population of just about 40 to as high as 400, has lived in isolation for the last 60,000 years is found in the North Sentinel Island which is under the administration of India. The island though (which is surrounded by the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea) is quite close to Myanmar and Thailand than it is to mainland India itself – has it restricted to visitors by the government.
So, how did Chau get there? He paid Indian fishermen to get him near the island to where he could just paddle his way to the shore. The fishermen were charged by the Indian court, however, the body has yet to be recovered.
With that, make sure to get these travel tips right especially since many just loves traveling to secluded places. Here goes.
Don’t. Just don’t. Hey, if you already know it’s an isolated place that is not open to visitors, then why go there? Curiosity and thirst for adventure has its limits – and this is one of them.
Let people know where you are going. Yet for those who has made a similar decision as Chau, or if you were simply caught by fate – call your friends and family as to where you are. Whatever happens, at least, there’s someone who could help you out.
Use a drone first. If it’s possible, try to have an advance party, err, a drone to check out the conditions first before it’s too late.
Know the language. If the place is under a certain country’s jurisdiction, then the inhabitants of that place probably speaks the same language (or perhaps has similarities) as the country who has jurisdiction over them. Knowing the language, even just a few words could bridge trust gaps.
Know and respect the culture. Still, knowing a couple of foreign sentences won’t do much if you fail to observe the place’s custom. Thus, it is expected that you have researched about the place. Or at least have a sincerely friendly disposition that’s ready to adjust to traditions when necessary.
Travel light. Especially in remote areas, it would certainly help to travel light. Oh, can you just imagine how hard it would be to carry ‘half of your house’ while crossing rivers on foot – or climbing mountains just to get to your accommodation?
Wear your most comfortable yet modest clothing. Being mobile is crucial when traveling, especially when in lesser known areas. And aside from bringing minimal stuff, wearing light, modest and comfortable clothes would be best for emergencies.
Have an escape plan. If you don’t have a map or a compass, or if Google maps is not applicable in that region, then it would help if you leave markers along the way. Yes, know the basic terrain of the place, so even if nightfall comes, you’d know your way.
Be prepared. Now, if you do have an escape plan, you should also understand that running or swimming to escape danger should not be your first option. Try to locate the boat area or whatever while moving about. And it would also be good if you brought even a pepper spray – a head start could make a difference.
Just don’t go. Okay, we may have given you useful tips above but the best tip would just really be not to go. These tips are for, you know, ‘just in case’. You see, stubbornness could just lead you to consequences that you may later regret. So. Final reminder.
If you have not heard it since then get ready for this — ‘instant noodles’ is junk food and is linked to several health issues like hypertension, heart disease, stroke, kidney damage, could cause cancer, overweight, and even miscarriage while also hindering sperm production. Seriously.
Instant noodles is ‘coated in wax’ and is particularly high in sodium (salt) and additives that are also used in lighter fluids, insecticides, coolants and detergents. And lest we forget, MSG or vetsin.
Even in Malaysia, it is said that the average amount of sodium found on 10 samples was 830 mg after a test conducted by the Consumers Association of Penang (CAP). Now, according to the current US RDA on sodium for adults and children over 4 years old is 2,400 mg a day. And eating instant noodles can easily cause excessive sodium intake as sodium is commonly used in our other daily food especially from processed and hawker foods. (Courtesy of consumer.org)
These are just some facts — and we are still not even talking about the reported leaching of dioxin and other hormone-like substances from plastic containers of cup noodles, among others.
See? Sadly, many of our countrymen even consume noodles as a substitute for regular meals or viand — obviously, because it’s cheaper compared to fish, meat or even vegetables. So, this should be a concern for government and business leaders. Having healthier food choices has something to do with having decent-paying jobs.
For now, all we could do is to try to avoid if not really minimize our consumption of noodles — yes, if only to stay healthy and ready.
It’s been a while since we had our YouTube review as there’s been so many interesting ‘consumer’ videos at hand; but for today, we got an ‘important’ one to share, something that would serve as a warning not just to parents but especially to youngsters in social media.
Here’s the child predator social experiment..
Mikayla. 13 years old. Meet up at the park. Obviously, you should remember the face of your Facebook friend if you are to meet him.. Then again, if you’re still that young, better meet with your parents around.
Julianna. 12 years old. Opening the house’s front door. Even if you’re at the comfort of your own home, again, especially being that young.. It would be better if your parents are around if you are to entertain visitors.
Jenna. 14 years old. Getting into a car. If you think it’s no longer safe at the park or at home, how much more if it were to an automobile that you get invited to?
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