Across Cultures

See everything, hear everything

Watch 60 films, 170 excerpts and over 80 archival artefacts selected by NFB specialists as part of this unique project.

When Strangers Re-Unite

When Strangers Re-Unite
1999, director: Florchita Bautista, Marie Boti

Film (52:00)

Find similar content
> Filipino Canadians | Domestic workers | Women | Immigration | Montreal | Families | Adolescents | Family violence | Asian Canadians | Labour exploitation | Racism | Social isolation | Social action | Toronto | Work

  Description     The film  
Every year thousands of women enter Canada as domestic servants, the majority of them from the Philippines. Leaving their own children and families behind, they can spend many isolated years cooking, cleaning and caring for others. Sending much of their wages back home, they dream of the day their families can join them. When Strangers Re-Unite looks at what happens after years of separation and sacrifice. Virtual strangers at the airport, family members face a confusing journey of rebuilding relationships while adapting to an often unwelcoming environment. Within the Filipino community in Canada, several groups and organizations have been actively working for the rights and welfare of migrant workers. It is largely thanks to them that most of these families are able to overcome what can seem like insurmountable obstacles. Filmed in Toronto, Montreal and the Philippines, this candid and touching portrait reveals three families in the midst of healing, coping with the strangers they love.