A Little Recap
I’ve been working on the issue of migration since 2004. Between 2001 and 2002 I had the pleasure of meeting a wise Filipino woman named Potri.
The daughter of a Sultan, Potri was from the southern Philippine Island of Mindanao. For many years, she worked as a nurse in Saudi Arabia. At the time of our meeting, she was employed as a nurse at a hospital in Manhattan.
Her in-depth storytelling about the mistreatment of migrant workers prompted me to travel to the Philippines in 2004.
While there, I listened to the stories of migrant workers returning from Iraq at the beginning of the U.S. invasion and occupation. At the time, I didn’t have a platform to share their voices but now I do.
The mission of Migrant Stories is to harness the power of storytelling because there isn’t someone you couldn’t learn to love and respect if you listened to their story.
Who am I?
My name is Simba Shani Kamaria Russeau and I’m an award-winning self-taught multimedia storyteller using the sacred art of storytelling to heal and repair one’s dignity. I am also a photography monk, a seeker of life, DJ, micropublisher and founder of Taste Culture. At the moment, I live in Southeast Asia.
During my late teens into my mid 20′s, I was homeless for seven years and cleaned houses. During that time, I consciously surrendered to life’s lessons. I also spent a great deal of time working in people’s homes as a maid.
Stripped of what little belongings I had, I realised that worldly honours and possessions can be here today and lost tomorrow. In hindsight, those seven years of living on the streets brought me the most bliss. Daily, I was in connection with life’s alchemy.
- Humility came in the form of being a beggar and house cleaner.
- Adventure was achieved in experimenting with dance, poetry, journalism and photography.
- Inner strength developed by risking pennies for a bigger dream.
- Letting the wind decide when and where my next destination would be resulted in patience and trust.
- Fear of the unknown brought transformation.
- Pain was the realisation that I was ignoring my soul’s contract.
- Love manifested out of ritualising my daily acts.
- Shock came from giving birth to DJ Samba Sim and discovering my turntable skillz
- The bricks others threw, became my foundation.
- Healing came from listening to other people’s stories.
- Justice came from learning my rights
Some of my credits include The Guardian, The Atlantic, Al Jazeera, Inter Press Service, IRIN News Agency, Le Monde, Rolling Stone Magazine, Internazionale and Every Human Has Rights Media Award.
Your support allows me to continue doing this work. Here’s how you can help: