Suai Timor-Leste Delegation

October 27th, 2010 jen Posted in 2010 Friendship Celebrations, Events, Friend Visits, Friends of Suai News, Port Phillip Visits, Suai Delegation, Suai Timor-Leste Delegation Comments Off on Suai Timor-Leste Delegation

Deputy District Administrator Teofilo do Carmo and Coordinator of Covalima Community Centre Alberto de Jesus Barros left Suai Covalima for CoPP, Melbourne Australia on 14th Oct 2010 to attend 10th year Anniversary Celebrations. They were looking forward to signing a new agreement to continue the friendship for another 10 years. See more here …

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Monash Work of Visiting Artists from East Timor

August 1st, 2009 jen Posted in Artist Visits, Friend Visits, Friends of Suai News Comments Off on Monash Work of Visiting Artists from East Timor

While Natalino and Grinaldo were in Melbourne they spent two weeks in the Fine Arts Department of Monash University. This is some photographs of the work they did while they were here.

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Friends of Suai Co-ordinator visits Port Phillip

August 1st, 2009 jen Posted in Friend Visits, Port Phillip Visits, Simao Barretto Visits Comments Off on Friends of Suai Co-ordinator visits Port Phillip

Simao da Silva Barreto Suai Community Centre Co-ordinator visited Australia in August 2007 for 2 weeks. The purpose of his visit was to meet the many supporters of Friends of Suai at the City of Port Phillip (CoPP) and present an evaluation completed by the Suai Commission, staff and partners and discuss the direction of our ongoing work together. Simao is a respected community leader in Suai and teaches in the public secondary school most mornings.

The Port Phillip council has a 10 year friendship agreement to build a strong relationship with the people of Suai. The Friends of Suai comprised of local residents & friends began in 2000 and supports the Suai Community Centre funded by the City of Port Phillip, works with the District Administration, Youth Centre and other partners.

Seventy people attended a public meeting to meet Simao and hear about developments in Suai and the District of Covalima. Port Phillip Council provides an annual grant and residents have generously donated to Suai since 2000. ‘The donations are really making a difference to peoples’ lives’ he told us.There was nothing after the Indonesian milita left Covalima in 1999, now things are beginning to improve’ he told us . Let’s hope it continues.

Cr Karen Sait on behalf of Mayor and councillors commissioned a traditional East Timor Tais Weaving for the new St Kilda town hall. This will mean that the young women will learn how to produce the old dyes and thread to weave the Tais. Simao spent time in the schools of Port Phillip visiting Elwood College over 3 days, St Columba’s, Galilee and Elwood Primary schools. He attended a regional schools civics conference at Caulfield Grammar.

At Elwood college he attended various classes and addressed a special lunchtime meeting with Year 12 politics students studying democracy and citizenship, Michael Danby MP, Evan Thornley, Parliamentary Secretary to the Victorian Premier and Cr Janet Cribbes  attended the luncheon.

Port Phillip staff showed Simao around he visited St Kilda Town Hall, Council Depot, Port Melbourne Hub, and other activities. Simao looked over the St Kilda Indigenous nursery cooperative (SKINC) to compare notes on strengthening a similar project in Suai. Balwyn Rotary Club are old friends of Suai and welcomed him as guest speaker. Rotary have offered a grant in partnership with Port Phillip to fund solar power for 4 remote health clinics. They are also discussing refurbishment of derelict buildings at the Suai secondary school. He visited 3CR  community radio, Alternative Technology Association and Engineers without Borders. City of Kiama NSW who are new friends of the sub district of Zumalai in Covalima with a population of 14,000 people. Simao visted Kiama and hoped to catch a glimpse of Sydney harbour on his way home.

Special thanks to CoPP staff and the Friends of Suai Committee Members and residents of Port Phillip.

Pat Jessen, Coordinator Friends of Suai August 2007

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Suai Sub District Administrator Visits Melbourne

August 1st, 2009 patjessen Posted in Friend Visits, Friends of Suai News, Port Phillip Visits, Senor Francisco d'Jesus Alvares visit Comments Off on Suai Sub District Administrator Visits Melbourne

From Pat Jessen – May, 2009
Last week Francisco d’Jesus Alvares the Sub District Administrator for Suai, Timor Leste visited Port Phillip.
Francisco was in Melbourne to attend training through Victorian Government’s Department of Planning and Community Development (DPCD. Francisco and and Rui da Costa, Sub District Administrator Lacluta Viqueque, had 4 weeks intensive English training and were placed at Wangaratta City Council to learn about local government in Australia and community development in a rural setting in Australia.
Friends of Suai (FoS) committee hosted a dinner for them in Port Phillip to hear about their experiences both in Australia and their work in Timor Leste. Francisco met with FoS Chairperson Bill Armstrong and Coordinator Pat Jessen to give an update on his work in Suai.
Francisco also visited the St Kilda Town Hall for a round table discussion with the Mayor of Port Phillip Cr Frank O’Connor, Cr Rachel Powning, the Friends of Suai council representative and Governance team, to discuss the first up and coming municipal elections planned for 2009/2010.
The municipal elections are planned to roll out with village level elections in September 2009, followed by legislative and president elections that will be staged in 2010. The new municipal system will decentralise government to the districts providing greater opportunity for much needed development and infrastructure in rural and remote locations like Suai.
Snr Francisco visited the State Library many times whilst in Melbourne and we showed him the St Kilda Library because he mentioned he would like to see a municipal library in the heart of Suai.
Francisco said he enjoyed his visit to Melbourne, especially the opportunity to see snow on Mt Buffalo or Buffalo Mountain as he described it. He visited schools in Wangaratta and was impressed with youth participation and older people’s participation being valued in local decision making. The Friends of Lacluta in Wangaratta made them both very welcome showing them the sights in their region.
It was a great opportunity for everyone to get together.

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