(Photo: Ángel Tesorero/Khaleej Times)
Pameela Vembolamala Krishnan, 51, came to the United Arab Emirates in 2010 to support her husband, who barely earned 20 dirhams a day as a worker in India. Her two children were about to enter university but could not even afford to buy basic necessities.
It was a difficult decision but, given his circumstances, it became easy and practical: go to the United Arab Emirates (home to millions of migrant workers) and work.
Pameela worked as a cleaner at the Canadian Medical Center in Abu Dhabi. For 13 years, she showcased her dedication to work and because of this, she was hailed as one of the winners in the outstanding workforce category of the inaugural Emirates Labor Market award held in Abu Dhabi on Thursday.
Pameela, holding a blue and white trophy and wearing a simple white printed dress, stood proudly alongside senior government officials, CEOs, captains of industry and other workers.
Pameela Vembolamala Krishnan receives the award from Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Special Affairs Advisor to the Presidential Court, and MoHRE Minister Dr. Abdulrahman Al Awar (Photo: Angel Treasurer/Khaleej Times)
“It was a moment of joy; a validation of my years of hard work and sacrifices. It was a day of celebration,” Pameela, who speaks only Malayalam, told Khaleej Times through an interpreter.
It was a celebration and a personal victory for Pameela, who has been working in the UAE for more than a decade. She did not mention her monthly salary, but said that it was more than enough to help put food on the table and also to provide a proper education for her children.
His eldest daughter, Gayatri, now 27, has a master’s degree in economics; while her son Vishnu, 26, is an accountant. They are both married and have one child each.
“Looking back, everything seemed to happen very quickly but of course there were many challenges along the way,” Pameela said, adding: “The most obvious and biggest challenge was coming to a foreign country and I could only speak Malayalam.”
The biggest blow in Pamela’s life came in 2017, when her husband died, leaving her as the sole breadwinner for the family.
“I was devastated, but I had to move on and stay focused on my goal of providing a better future for my family. Fortunately, there is a huge Malayalam community in the UAE and my friends and co-workers became a second family here,” continued Pameela, originally from Kerala.
The work was menial, but Pameela, who previously worked as a domestic help in India, did not let it become a routine because she found passion in her work. “Although I am just a humble cleaner, I would like to consider myself a part of the healthcare industry,” she said, noting that her 8am to 4pm duty involves making sure every corner of the healthcare center is free of charge. of germs and infections.
Mubarak Bin Falah, CEO of the Canadian Medical Center (CMC) Group, personally praised Prameela. He said: “Pameela has consistently demonstrated commitment and passion in her work, more often than not beyond our expectations. Her tireless efforts have not only had a profound impact on our company, but have also left a lasting impression on the UAE labor market as a whole.”
Mubarak Bin Falah, CEO of Canadian Medical Center Group (photo attached)
Pameela was nominated by CMC for the award which is sponsored by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Presidential Court, and organized by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization (MoHRE).
MoHRE Minister Dr Abdulrahman Al Awar previously explained that the award aims to recognize the efforts of the private sector and highlight successful practices in the UAE labor market, including improving the working environment and protecting rights and employee well-being.
Pameela’s two children are currently in the United Arab Emirates to share the joy with their mother. Pameela said that she still has no plans to return and retire in India. “I am still young and strong. “I will continue working,” she noted.
In addition to achieving her dream of her daughter and son receiving college degrees, Pameela also built a two-bedroom house for her family in Palakkad, Kerala. “Now my only responsibility is to pay off that loan,” she said.
As for the future, Pameela said she plans to build a simple but cozy nursing home in her hometown. She said: “I found a very welcoming country when I came here as a migrant worker. The United Arab Emirates has given a lot to me and my family. When I return, I also want to share the blessings I received here with my parents back home.”
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