Buki Domingos was born in Nigeria, West Africa and she is currently a very proud mother of four boys. Buki worked as a registered Geriatric nurse and an alternative singer/songwriter by profession in Germany for 13 years. Buki’s nursing career was inspired by Buki’s mother’s heart disease in the mid-eighties and based on her love serving others in their most difficult times. Buki worked two jobs in Germany, as a Geriatric Nurse (Examinierte Altenpflegerin) for“CARITAS” and as a professional singer that included performing with artist such as Elton John, Whitney Houston, and R Kelley. She also performed at Germany’s second best show in 2013 “FANTISSIMA”and it eventually became Germany’s best show in 2017. Buki encountered a traumatic situation when her first marriage ended as a result of substance abuse and domestic violence. Looking for a new beginning and safety from her abuser, Buki decided to take into consideration the convincing offer of work and most of all safety offered by a friend of hers. Buki decided to travel to the United States of America. Upon arrival she found herself engulfed in a vicious circle of abuse and deception that made her feel trapped, helpless, and very afraid for her life and her children’s lives. This included sexual abuse, physical violence, frequent psychological and emotional attacks, and constant risk for her children's safety. After the escape from her trafficker, Buki found her children and herself in several safe houses and safety transfers (she had relocated four times in 2 months). This was due to the fact that her trafficker was able to locate her at these shelters and attempted to gain access to her. Law enforcement and support staff intervention stymied these attempts by the trafficker. In the late summer of 2014 she moved with her children to San Diego to yet another safe house. Her feeling of helplessness and despair increased. While in Oceanside, she was referred to a legal firm “Casa Cornelia” which greatly helped and was to change her life for the better. Buki was enlightened of the different forms of human trafficking and came to the harsh realization that she was a victim of domestic violence and human trafficking. This made her case very complex. After several appointments she was referred to Carmen Kcomt a Peruvian judge now program director for a non profit organization. She received Buki and her children with open arms and assisted them with endless resources of which were public benefits like the victims compensation program, therapy but to mention a few!
Buki was also able to Volunteer and secure a part time teaching job for a non profit organization in City Heights. Her primary job duties were public health, dance instructor, and educational instructor for neighborhood youth that were primarily first generation immigrants and refugees. Thanks to the tireless efforts of her attorney Carolina Martin Ramos and team at Casa Cornelia Law Center, Buki’s status and that of her children were adjusted in July 2016. Buki went back to nursing school in the USA, passed her board exams, and now works as a home health hospice nurse. Buki continues to also volunteer in City Heights and to work with community organizations and non-profits. She also uses her language and communication skills- she is fluent in five different languages and draws upon her experience of being born and raised in Nigeria and life in Europe as a student and as professional singer as a way to bond with everyone she comes in contact with.
In work as an activist/Victim Advocate/motivational speaker she constantly lifts up those most marginalized voices and she share her own story about being a Survivor of Human of Trafficking. She attended the National Feminist Organizing School in Philadelphia in 2017 that was sponsored by Grassroots Global Justice and school was set up as a national training ground for women of color committed to social justice activism. In 2019, she was selected as one of the official representatives from San Diego at the National Women's March in Washington, D.C.
From these national and international experiences Buki has been able to develop and utilize her inclusive leadership skills here in San Diego. Buki is Board Chair of Activist San Diego (ASD) a Social Justice non profit organization with a community radio Station KNSJ. Buki has been instrumental in assisting this organization in its transformation from a primarily older White male organization to one in which the Board is majority people of color and they have expanded beyond their traditional scope of environmental work. ASD co-sponsors and partners with organizations/groups like the Peace Resource Center, 350.0rg, Racial Justice Coalition and they spearhead or co-sponsor protest like the Immigration Rights march, Climate Change Actions, and Criminal Justice Reform work. Buki also Co-Host, with Dr. Darwin Fishman, the KNSJ Radio show “Alafia: “ Voices of the African Diaspora. This radio show focuses on the struggles that communities of color are immersed in and the organizations and individuals that work with these communities. Buki also works as a full time healthcare professional and she volunteers with the Indigenous Health Care Support group.
Buki developed an educational program for La Maestra that included a way for all of the youth (Ages 5 to 18) to learn about and engage with the material through song and dance. The potency of music provided a perfect learning device and Buki provided a bridge that help connect on all the youth with familiar sounds and rhythms with a process to be able to acquire new knowledge. Buki's skills and a professional singer that she developed in Africa and Europe were critical for her success with this work and the children enrolled in this program to numbers never seen before at La Maestra.
When Buki was invited to perform at UC San Diego, as part of their Human Trafficking Awareness month activities, she not only provided her extraordinary talents as a singer, songwriter, and recording artist, but she also gave voice as a Survivor of Human Trafficking that was Nigerian and a successful musician. She has been able to challenge the racial, age, and class stereotypes associated with Human Trafficking and her story provides a potent message for everyone, from the President of UC San Diego to the students that came as a class project, about how vigilant and engaged we must be in our fight to end Human Trafficking, as well as living testament to how one person can overcome the most staggering odds and that are lives are defined solely by our darkest hour.
NO MORE, NO MORE Raising Awareness of Human Trafficking on University Campuses San Diego, April 21, 2017