When I arrived in Barcelona I passed in a garden and noticed palm trees as I’ve seen in North Africa.
On the floor of that same garden I found an abandoned suitcase.
The invisibility of the stories behind those who come here.
The green birds nesting on these palm trees.
if they struggled
with any sort of language barrier.
It is natural for birds to migrate across continents.
The same happens to humans moving in search of survival and better living conditions.
The fact that our societies do not assume the naturalness of this pattern generates conflict, disconnection and on the other side the scope of cooperation.
In the middle, we can find resilience.
This is what I found here in the movement of women domestic workers coming from different parts of the world.
I went to a gathering with them to fight for the right to live and work here with dignity.
I portrayed two of these women.
Distinct postures and energies.
One came from Nigeria 30 years ago and has an assertive, fiery presence.
The other came from Peru 2 years ago and has a sweet receptive presence.
Both came for the love of their children.
Both self rooted roots.
Maria Iyabor Ojo
A self-determined storm from Nigeria
She's been working in Spain for over 30 years and only got her "papers" recently.
The fact she didn't got residence permit hasn't allowed her to go to Nigeria and visit her family ever since.
Maria is one of the active voices leading the Care Workers Sindicate Sindhogar,
where migrant women most of them dedicated to domestic work jobs get together, support each other and fight for their wellbeing and legal rights.
Yessenia is Peruvian.
Her mother gave her this arabic name due to a soap opera she would watch on Tv.
She went into debt two years ago to make it to Europe to join her older son.
She brought her young child. Family is what she values the most.
She feels alone though.
She told me that she somehow felt blind sighted when she arrived here. She couldn’t understand anything around her.
She thinks people lose their heart in here, due to the struggle. She believes they get wounded, cold and disconnected “even being Peruvian” . She defines Peruvian cultural identity as very emotional and family attached.
After an hour of questions I asked her what she does in order to keep her strength and presence in the midst of adversity.
She told me that she focus on her prayers where she asks to always keep her humility and her heart warm.