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Feature writing
I write news and opinion articles and have written and edited publications for clients like Chevrolet, Nectar, BT and Arqiva.

This feature on Filipino immigration into Ireland was written for my journalism course.

"Always potato"
A Filipina nurse in rural Ireland
'Grandpa' is Jack McFadden, an ex-school teacher who has been suffering from Alzheimer's for the last 2 years. 'Grandma', his wife Kathleen, found his needs too much to cope with until a solution arrived in the form of bubbly mother of five, Venus Aragoza Deya. She had lived in Singapore for the last three years with their son, Declan, and his family. When Jack became ill, they sent her to Downings. Her culture makes it impossible to refer to Jack and Kathleen by their first names. "In the Philippines…we call brother, sister, auntie uncle, a sign of respect. Here they call by name… I can't!" she proclaims in strongly accented but near perfect English.

Surprisingly at ease in her new surroundings, Venus says she feels "very lucky" to be here and describes her new job as "really easy". Her daily routine involves dressing and bathing Jack, preparing meals taking him for walks.


Read the full article...
 

A skills shortage has opened the door to an influx of Filipino carers into Ireland. For Venus Aragoza Deya, this has meant moving to a small, tranquil Donegal town - a world far removed from her previous life in hot and hectic Manila. But how does she cope with life in the sticks? And how have the locals reacted to her?

"Show me the way to go home, I'm tired and I want to go to bed…." she hums as she peels the potatoes. She urges "Come on Grandpa!" until he joins in with a grin, "Jesus it's cold today isn't it? Would you like a cup of tea?"

Were I not able to hear see a four-foot, dark-skinned, almond-eyed Filipino woman standing in front of me, I may not have believed it. Thirty-six-year-old Venus Aragoza Deya is originally from Manila. She arrived to the Donegal town of Downings a month ago to work as a private nurse and is the biggest thing to hit this small town since the arrival of the telephone.