Early in our involvement, Christian College made a decision under the
leadership of College Chairman Mr. Howard Williams, to form a long term
relationship with the people of East Timor. Initially the College was
involved in the provision and transport of dairy calves, which could
thrive in a tropical climate, for the establishment of a dairy farm in
Fuiloro, East Timor.
Since 2003 the staff, students, their families and friends
of Christian College Geelong have been actively involved in supporting
this young nation.
The Australia Timor-Leste Friendship Network -
designated links between the Geelong region and the township of
Viqueque, which was located south of Dili. In September 2004, the City
of Greater Geelong formalised a close relationship with the District of
Viqueque by the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding in Timor Leste.
The relationship between Christian College families and the people of
Viqueque has proved to be extremely rewarding for both groups. After
discussions with the local officials and village chiefs, and with the
help of a number of work parties, the early establishment of The
Friendship House in the area of Beloi, Viqueque, proved to be a catalyst
for the establishment of our ongoing programs.
Having somewhere for our work parties to sleep when we visited East Timor, as well as a centre for locals in the community to meet and work,
provided a natural focal point for future planning. The house is called
Uma Maun Alin (literally, “house of the little brother and little
sister”). Other groups are also welcome to visit the Friendship House to talk to local staff and see the programs operating there. For further information, or to book and stay at the facilities, please email email@example.com.
Since 2003, the College working committee, our staff members, students,
families and friends have jointly raised approximately $20,000AUD each
year, which has all been directly used for projects in Viqueque and the
Projects In Viqueque
- Volunteer work party helped local schools– volunteers from Uma
Maun Alin painted school walls and fixed the chairs and doors. Christian
College Geelong supplied the materials to assist this program. The
library building at SMA Liceu was renovated and a new roof supplied
- A Women’s Sewing Group began – two groups of women use the
sewing room in Uma Maun Alin. One group was supported by the Alola
Foundation. The other group is supported by Christian College Geelong.
Both groups sew school uniforms and other official uniforms. Also bags
and baby’s clothing are made.
- Students from Viqueque visited Geelong for the first time and
attended Christian College Geelong Senior School classes. The students
were accommodated with College families for 3 months.
- Tank water was provided for the community in Beobe in Sucaer Oan
and water taps were renovated in Luca Oan.
- Employed Maria Alves as first Liaison Officer
- First group of Christian College students visited Viqueque in March
- First teacher to teacher seminar in September
- Soccer Field constructed at Uma Kiik in the community of Beobe
- Creados independence fighters visited Geelong in April 2006.
College Chairman, Howard Williams found three surviving creados and
organised for their visit to Australia to coincide with ANZAC Day
- Assistance to the Viqueque Hospital. Materials such as nurse’s
pouches (including fob watches and scissors), beds/sheets, mosquito
nets, babies’ clothes and a set of baby scales have proved invaluable
- New schools planned at Talibelanda and Kraras - Christian
College Geelong was approached to help support the building of these
schools. They received permission from the Department of Education to
proceed. The building of Kraras began in 2008. Students attended official opening
- A Christian College staff member was an observer at the 2007
East Timor Parliamentary elections. (Another committee member was an
observer for the 2012 elections)
- Mosquito nets were provided to the local orphanage. Christian College students also knitted blankets.
- A visit from Christian College Geelong to organise contractors
to build the new school at Kraras. The school was officially opened in
July 2010. Christian College senior students participated in the
- Kindergarten commenced at Uma Maun Alin – in January 2010 a
teacher was employed to run the kindergarten and he was assisted by four
volunteers (Juliana, Nurlinda, Venancia and Lucia).
- Approximately 30 children attend every day
- Basic English classes commenced for local children in the afternoons. Classes held at Uma Maun Alin.
- Computer Classes introduced. Certificates are awarded after completion of a 3 month course.
- A Christian College delegate represented the Geelong Viqueque
friendship group at the international conference: ‘Haforza Relasaun
Amizade / Strengthening Friendship Workshop’ in Maubisse in August 2010
- Uma Maun Alin Kindergarten thrives under the direction of 3 teachers: Nurlinda, Lucia and Venancia.
- Visit from Christian College Geelong to organise contractors to build the new school at Raitahau
- Tertiary scholarship program commenced for four suitable candidates from two senior high schools in Viqueque.
- Four Timorese teaching staff from the Friendship House trained and mentored in Australia for 2 months
- Kindergarten teachers are now qualified in their own area of study (Psychology, English/teaching and Accounting)
- Scholarship program expanded to 8 students. All students selected attend universities in Dili.
- Teacher training for Viqueque kindergarten staff continued in Australia
Raitahau Primary School new building was officially opened in July 2012. Christian College students were officially involved.
A motorbike was purchased and delivered to Kraras Primary School to
enable teaching staff to drive to work (instead of walking an hour each
Friends and Sponsors of Viqueque Projects
Christian College Geelong greatly appreciates the support of all
sponsors and individuals who have volunteered to take part in work parties
in East Timor. We value all who have supported the College goals in
helping the people of Viqueque.
You may wish to make a secure online donation (Paypal Link) to the fund
which supports the following ongoing programs in East Timor:
You may also wish to contact Christian College to speak to a member of the
Fundraiser calendar advertising
Employment of local staff in Viqueque
East Timor Friendship Committee
Tel +61 352411899 or email us