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Transnational Mothers : Mothering from afar in UAE

Vidhyaa c | United Arab Emirates

Satya from Visakapatinam,India, mother of three children, works as a cleaner, after death of her husband ,Satya shouldered the family responsibilities and her life filled with hardship, loneliness and despair, she left behind the children to her elderly parents and moved to UAE to support the family. Satya is earning $220 in a month, where she has to manage herself and portion of her earnings to her mother and children.
Satya’s voice almost whisper, filled with emotions and shared that she has not even seen her children for more than three years.
Satya words, “I can go back anytime, but I know that If I go back, no one eats”, so better sacrifice myself for my children.

An increasing of female migrants in UAE are mothering their children from afar, in order to provide good education for their children and support family back to improve standard of living and repay huge debts,she leave their families and loved ones and take advantages of the greater labour market opportunities in UAE..

That gap is filled through the social media. Sharing pictures, voice notes, and sending each other care packages keeps the intimacy alive, even when there is a border separating them. Even though that is not a substitute for a mother’s hug, regular communication makes it a little easier for both the children and the mothers to cope with the distance.

Separation from their families causes feelings of regret, hopelessness, and guilt, but the mothers are powerless against it. The children feel lonely and insecure, but those feelings can’t bring their mothers back to them. 

Mothering from afar but what can you do when there isn’t any other option?

Commissioned Photographer for The National, Abu Dhabi, UAE, completed Diploma in Photography Project in collaboration with Danish Media, World Photo Press and Noor images at Amsterdam which stimulated her to work on documentary projects where her projects to bring feelings into images and always believe photograph motivate and make others to think and react.

My projects mainly focus on women, human rights and identity, I dedicate myself to work on these issue and currently working on Motherhood and Childhood Separation in UAE and Under and Young Girls marriage with Older man in Rohingya Community,Bangaldesh.

Vidhyaa’s acclaim includes:Finalist in Renaissance Photography Competition and Exhibited in Getty Images for Transgender Project 2017,IPA HM for Editorial Series,Performance Award in Humanity Photography Project conducted by UNESCO & China, Black Wall Gallery Oregon Portland, Motiff Collective, Photo Travel Awards,Julia Margret Award- Finalist 2015 in Portrait category,Beyond winning a number of local UAEcompetitions, her deft photographic captures has been appreciated at the Group Photography Exhibition organized by Abu Dhabi Tourism and & Culture and at the Emirates Photography Exhibition, Abu Dhabi.



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