Photo shows front row Simao Barreto, Coordinator  Community Centre and Pat Jessen who work as a team coordinating the Friends of Suai;  former Coordinator Francisco de Andrade, back row Alberto Colli, Hospital Administrator, Jose Amarel, District Health Coordinator &  Alberto de Jesus Barros former Assistant Coordinator.


FOS-Cttee-SeptMontage-copyThe majority of the Friends of Suai who are involved in the week to week activities of the group with the exception of Rosemary Patterson. Photographed 7th September 09. From left Balthasar Kehi, Liz Milsom, Jen Hughes, Pat Jessen Glenn Staunton, Elizabeth Walpole, John Collins Alberto Barros (visitor from Suai), Ann Wigglesworth. Inset from left Bill Armstrong, Desleigh Kent and Patsy Thatcher front. More about the people in the Friends of Suai Committee.


simao flippedSimao da Silva Barreto is the Friends of Suai Community Centre Co-ordinator .  Simao is a respected community leader in Suai. He speaks fluent English having worked as a translator for the United Nations in Suai from 2000 – 2004. He is a committed educator and graduated with a Bachelor of English at UNTL in 2009. He teaches in the public secondary school most mornings in addition to his duties with the Friends of Suai. The  Friends of Suai relationship have strengthened under the leadership team of Simao and Pat on behalf of the respective community committees in both cities.


Pat Jessen became the Co-ordinator of the Friends of Suai in December 2004. Pat has a background in International Community Development with Australian Volunteers International. She worked as a senior manager with Australian Volunteers International with a focus on the Pacific Island countries and Papua New Guinea between 1993 – 2004. Her community work experience in Melbourne has positioned her well for nurturing community partnerships and alliances that add value to residents’ donations and consequently add benefits to the Suai community.


Bill Armstrong AO who is the current Friends of Suai Chairman has a long history working with the East Timorese and working in AID. Under Bill’s leadership the Friends of Suai Committee has found stability and direction. Bill came involved with East Timor’s journey into independence in 1975 when he was working for Action for World Development. He is a Port Phillip resident whose story is also included in our Solidarity pages alongside that of eleven other residents including Shirley Shackleton and Paul Stewart who have been active in East Timor’s struggle for independence over many years. Years of shared loss, trust and experience that have provided the foundation for this friendship.


Ergilio Vicente

Ergilio Vicente became the Co-ordinator of the Cova Lima Youth Media Centre in 2001. Ergilio has a degree in Agricultural Science but came to this job because of the need for activities to develop skills in the local youth community and foster peace and unit among them. His organisation is not annually funded by succeeds by working on a project by project basis. More…

More details about the people on the  Friends of Suai committee in Port Phillip