I lost track of time but as it was beginning to get dark a man stopped and asked if I was ok. He spoke my language. I was so happy to hear someone speaking my language but I was also too scared to talk to him because he was a man I didn’t know and anyway my employers had always told me never to trust anyone I met in the UK. However I was also tired and cold and hungry and felt I had no choice.
I told him I was not okay and that I had nowhere to go. He told me to go to the police station but I think he knew I would not do it because then he told me he knew somewhere I could go for a little while.
He took me to a restaurant and seemed to know the people who worked there because he spoke with them for some time. Then they bought me food and told me I could sleep there while they tried to help me. They lived upstairs and were a family.
I was still very scared but since it was mostly the women who spoke to me I thought maybe it would be okay. One of the girls even gave me some of her clothes as they could see how cold I was in what I was wearing.
To protect the confidentiality of individual domestic workers who come to Kalayaan, Cecilia’s story is made up of a composite of real case studies.