Former entrepreneur, turned asylum seeker, Joyce has been in Hong Kong for nearly ten years. Though she had to leave everything and everyone behind, including her daughter, she has made a home for herself in Hong Kong and wants to show that asylum seekers can be productive and give back to society.
Although Joyce cannot work because of her immigration status, Joyce does what she can to bridge the gap between local people and asylum seekers. Asylum seekers appreciate that the government provides food and shelter, but they don’t just want to receive, they want to give back too, and Joyce wants to let people know that asylum seekers can be productive in society and are capable of giving back if given the chance.
Joyce also wants to help asylum seekers become integrated into society and seeks to empower them to speak out by helping them see their own value. Some of this work is done at The Vine Church, where Joyce is one of the coordinators of an African refugee and asylum seekers community group. Joyce also volunteers at RUN (which stands for Rebuild, Unite, Nurture) and Branches of Hope, which are both organizations involved with helping rehabilitate refugees and women who have faced gender-based violence.
Growing up in an African country, she often heard the saying “Women are to be seen, and not to be heard”. Women didn’t have a voice, or the same social rights as men. Joyce believes that all human beings are made equal and unique by God, and campaigns for gender equality and for people to embrace one another's uniqueness. Joyce wants to empower people to embrace each other despite differences in religion, beliefs and sexual preference.
In her spare time, Joyce unwinds by watching TV and researching her dream home decor. Thanks to RUN, she is also studying an online course on project management, which she hopes will help her eventually start a business or gain employment in the future.
Andrea Roth, Mentor of Joyce