A French family living in Singapore is appealing to members of the public to help them cover the medical costs of their Filipino domestic helper, who recently suffered a stroke and has been in hospital since October 4.

That morning, the maid named Riza was found by another domestic helper lying in bed stiff and immobile, drooling and with her eyes wide open, until falling into a coma, Lianhe Wanbao (Singapore) reported.

The female employer, whose family includes three children aged between two and seven, was alarmed and called for assistance. Paramedics performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation on Riza while  transporting her to Singapore General Hospital.

She was diagnosed with stroke, and was operated on three times in three days to remove blood clots from her brain. Riza has regained consciousness but is weak, remaining under intensive care at the hospital.

Riza’s male employer Edward, 42, a specialist in information technology, told the newspaper that the maid is beloved by his three children even though she has only been working for the family for six months.

He said Riza was a responsible person whom the couple could rely on to take care of the kids, allowing the parents more time and freedom. He added that he regarded her as family, and it now was their turn to take good care of her.

Helen, 39, a cousin of the hospitalized maid, who is also a domestic helper in Singapore, said Riza conducted a healthy living style and regularly exercised on weekends. She was shocked when she learned of Riza’s illness.

Riza is also the financial pillar to her family in the Philippines, where she supports six younger brothers and sisters.

According to her employers, Riza’s medical fees, including surgeries, could be as much as S$100,000 (US$73,700) as she is expected to stay in a hospital general ward for another three weeks.

That being the case, they have been stepping efforts to raise funds from the public, and S$10,000 was secured in only three days after the announcement of the appeal.