This interview first appeared on Business Today.
What does it feel like being in this line of work?
Working in this line is sweet and sour for me. Sour because seeing them ageing and physically/mentally weak elderly losing enthusiasm which in general is disheartening. Sweet because seeing the family there for them is a great encouragement.
What made you join Homage Malaysia?
I join Homage Malaysia because I want to continue my role in caregiving and earn a side income. I was a nurse before, and I like looking after and seeing my patients remain healthy whether it is physically, mentally, or emotionally.
Being a healthcare gig worker, what are the challenges that you have faced and how did you overcome them?
The challenge I faced is dealing with mentally challenged clients. Sometimes I need to accept that if the client and I are not on good terms, and if it’s not working out, then I need to just be relaxed and be patient. Accept the fact that clients are mentally challenged, they need understanding and empathy from others. Whenever I have the opportunity to visit the same client again, things usually turn better because of the rapport that has been built.
Do you think it is important to provide female workers with a safe working space?
This is for sure. In general, female caregivers may not be as strong physically and need protection coverage in that working environment. With effective guidelines in place to safeguard their wellbeing, especially caregivers, it is a two-way street ensuring the client receives the best care at the end of the day.
We have a helpline directly to Homage or can voice our concerns in the app whenever we need to raise incidences that might have occurred during a visit and that to me is one of the reasons why I find assurance that my welfare is being taken care of and that they consider the situations from both parties.
Do you think women are given an equal opportunity here?
Yes. As compared to other countries, in general, Malaysia has done a quite good job in making sure females are taken care of. Homage has provided women more choices in taking part in the gig economy as a whole apart from the usual e-hailing or F&B gig roles.