Actress and television host Isabelle Daza handed a million pesos to a domestic helper who was allegedly abused by her former employers and led to her partial blindness.
In an Instagram Reel on Nov. 20, Daza handed Elvie Vergara a manager’s check as she shook her hand and informed her that she had started a fundraiser.
“Meron po akong maliit sa regalo sa inyo kasi nalaman ko ang kuwento mo noong nanood ako ng news,” Daza said.
“Sa tulong ng lahat ng mga followers ko at lahat ng nanonood ng story mo, meron silang na-donate para sa ‘yo.”
“Napakahirap ng buhay,” Daza added as she appeared to stop breaking in tears.
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The fundraiser, which started on Sept. 8, noted how Vergara was allegedly “physically, mentally and verbally abused by her employers so much that she has been blinded in both eyes.”
Daza said the intended donation, which was originally P300,000, would be used for Vergara’s operation.
Vergara’s compensation from her former employers was also withheld, and Daza said she and the government are trying to help Vergara get it back, though it’s a “tedious process with a lot of paperwork.”
At the time, Daza also said she’ll make sure Vergara receives the cash personally and not through anyone or any organization.
Vergara’s situation prompted a Senate hearing last September, during which senators learned that her employers, Pablo and France Ruiz, allegedly put chili and hammered her private part, punched her on the shoulder, back, and stomach, and put her face near a stove, based on the affidavit of Vergara’s fellow worker Paolo Toling.
During the Senate hearing, other workers also aired their grievances, such as the alleged lack of benefits and lack of payment.
The Ruizes denied the allegations.