The Hidden Message.
How we rescued abused domestic workers by breaking into their employers’ homes.
In Lebanon, there are 200,000 foreign domestic workers from countries like Philippines, Sri Lanka and Ethiopia. Trying desperately to support families back home, the reality is that thousands are physically and sexually abused. Often they are locked away and prevented from ever leaving their employers’ homes. We needed to communicate with them without raising their employers’ suspicision.
We partnered with four national radio stations, to create a series of radio ads in different languages that only domestic workers would understand.
Disguised as typical retail commercials, these ads bore a secret message and a helpline number. Unnoticed by their employers, the ads delivered a message of hope and a lifeline to those hidden behind walls across the country.
The campaign has already helped rescue four domestic workers. Once domestic workers call the Sawa Mninjah helpline, the organisation, with the support of local lawyers, develops a rescue plan that’s tailored to their circumstances.
The project is ongoing and continues to free abused domestic workers.