Home at last

Myrna Te­jada re­united with daugh­ters af­ter work­ing abroad for 10 years

The Beacon (Gander) - - Front page - BY CLARENCE NGOH clarence.ngoh@gan­der­bea­con.ca

It is said pa­tience is a virtue and hard work and per­se­ver­ance al­ways pay off.

This could not be more true for Myrna Te­jada, who waited 10 years to be re­united with her two daugh­ters, Lianne and Sy­dine, from the Philip­pines.

Te­jada needed to leave the Philip­pines and search for a job abroad to “sup­port her chil­dren and pro­vide them for a bet­ter fu­ture,” Te­jada said.

‘No mat­ter how hard we work back home, due to the low eco­nomic sta­tus in our coun­try, we can­not en­joy a life that we truly de­serve.”

Te­jada was des­per­ate to get out of the coun­try at that time, “and it cost me a lot of money, and I took out a loan and was in a lot debt.”

Thus, the jour­ney to work abroad be­gan as a live- in care­giver in Is­rael. She said those years were chal­leng­ing.

“I was send­ing home money to sup­port my chil­dren, pay­ing off my debt, and I had no sav­ings at all,” she said, break­ing down as she re­called the strug­gle. “I worked six days for my em­ployer, and on my day off, I cleaned houses. I re­ally didn’t have a life.

“When I left home, I was de­ter­mined that I would not go back, and I knew that I could not stay in Is­rael ei­ther.”

Af­ter three and a half years in Is­rael, Te­jada moved to Canada and found a po­si­tion as a live-in care­giver.

She did not travel back to the Philip­pines the years she was work­ing abroad be­cause of “par­tic­u­larly chal­leng­ing cir­cum­stances in my mar­riage.”

“I would call my chil­dren ev­ery day us­ing Skype or Viber, but they had to sneak away from their fa­ther to chat to me. It was very dif­fi­cult,” Te­jada said.

There when she needed them

In ad­di­tion to friends en­cour­ag­ing her to push on, Te­jada cred­its her spouse Jerry Hann and his fam­ily as her crit­i­cal sup­port sys­tem.

“They were al­ways there when I needed them.”

Te­jada was also for­tu­nate to have an un­der­stand­ing boss who made al­lowances to give her some time off to talk to her chil­dren.

“They have been so good to me.”

Crit­i­cal as­sis­tance came from the of­fice of MP Scott Simms and his then-ex­ec­u­tive sec­re­tary, Au­drey Miller.

“She pa­tiently helped me com­mu­ni­cate with im­mi­gra­tion, and made calls on my be­half, fol­lowed up my ap­pli­ca­tion, and gave me ad­vice on what I should do,” said Te­jada. “The sup­port they gave me was ex­cep­tional – I can’t thank them enough.

“I spent many nights cry­ing and there was a lot of stress and worry. I don’t know how I did it,” Te­jada paused, as heavy tears rolled down her chin.

Her old­est daugh­ter Lianne, rubbed Te­jada’s back and said, “it’s ok. It’s ok.”


Myrna Te­jada, cen­tre, and her daugh­ters Lianne, left, and Sy­dine re­united af­ter 10 years liv­ing apart. Te­jada, from the Philip­pines, sought work abroad so she could sup­port her fam­ily to pro­vide her­self and her daugh­ters a brighter fu­ture. She said Jerry Hann, far left, and his fam­ily were her crit­i­cal sup­port sys­tem dur­ing those stress­ful years.

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