Hidden Dreams is a creative collaboration between Hong Kong photographer E.P. Miller and social activist Silvia Bonvini for HK Helpers Campaign. Work for the project began in late 2014 and finished in early 2015. The photographs bring viewers face to face with 335 helpers, a number that correlates to the estimated 330,000 helpers currently employed in the city. The addition of words chosen by the helpers to describe themselves are human pursuits that every person can relate to.
Ultimately, Hidden Dreams seeks to build compassion for domestic helpers as human beings while underscoring their valuable contributions to households and the overall economy of Hong Kong.
Sitting together on pedestrian bridges, sidewalks, parks and any other available public space, the unique spectacle of Hong Kong’s helper community enjoying their weekly day off is an unforgettable memory for many visitors and new arrivals to the city.
Like the helpers, I came to Hong Kong in search of opportunities. The differences between the city and our respective homelands can be felt in many facets of daily life. The drive to respond in a meaningful way came when I learned about the many correctable issues they face here.
As participants in the human experience, every person seeks to fulfil their dreams and aspirations in pursuit of a better life. Perhaps it’s this truth that champions the notion of human equality.
My hope is that each person who looks upon these photographs will relate to the helpers as they would their own family or a dear friend.
Special thanks to: Jack Cruzado, Regilyn Gambalan, Juvy Gapuz, Meredith McBride, Tom Grundy and Wina Ocuz for their help and support throughout the project. Thanks also to Martin Siu, Fransiska Darjanto, Florensia Daryanto for translation.