July 2022 Newsletter

DOWNLOAD PDF: ATLAS Newsletter – July 2022 Welcome to the July 2022 edition newsletter of ATLAS, the Australia Timor-Leste Advancement Society. This month we cover: Ongoing Development in Timor-Leste a Priority Advancement in Australia/Timor-Leste Relations Education and Training a High Priority … Read More

Winnie the War Winner – 80 Years Ago

The few hundred Australians who had moved into Portuguese Timor in December 1941 initially had no contact with the outside world. They lacked their own radio equipment until they constructed a wireless from pieces of machinery, wire, and broken radio … Read More

ATLAS Newsletter March 2022

Read the latest ATLAS Newsletter – March 2022 Scholarship program

ATLAS Newsletter December 2021

Read the latest ATLAS Newsletter – December 2021

On Development in Timor-Leste

Click on the link below for an interesting article about the situation in Timor-Leste now. Despite notable progress, Timor-Leste’s increasingly vibrant capital Dili has many flaws.  

RIP Max Stahl

Max Stahl was a true friend of the Timorese people and their fight for justice. Max witnessed and filmed the Santa Cruz massacre where more than 250 East Timorese people were killed by Indonesian soldiers who opened fire on a … Read More

Doing it Hard in COVID Time

Recently, news reports warned that the health system in Timor-Leste was “in danger of collapsing” following increases in COVID-19 cases. The delta variant of the virus has caused a large upsurge in the number of new cases. The capital Fili … Read More

Remembering Carmel Budiardjo

Carmel Budiardjo died recently at the age of 96. She was one of the world’s greatest fighters for human rights in those countries whose human rights have been trampled on by the Indonesian military (TNI) with support and acquiescence of … Read More

Moringa – Drumstick Tree

There’s a tree that grows all over Timor-Leste called Marungi or Morgina (Moringa oleifera). It also grows across Asia, Africa and South America, although it is native to India. It’s called the miracle tree or the tree of life. Why? Because … Read More

The Santa Cruz Massacre – 30 years on

November 12th 2021 Marks the 30th anniversary of the massacre at the Santa Cruz cemetery in Dili, Timor-Leste. This was the event which finally roused the world to what had been going in East Timor since 1975. The Indonesian occupation … Read More

ATLAS Newsletter September 2021

Click here to read the latest Newsletter for ATLAS! Newsletter September 2021  

Timor-Leste’s health system ‘faces collapse’

The health system in Catholic-majority Timor-Leste is “in danger of collapsing” following a recent spike in Covid-19 cases, while many health workers have also been infected, the government says.

“Moringa” – a great meal-maker

There’s a tree that grows all over Timor-Leste called Marungi or Moringa (Moringa oleifera).  It also grows across Asia, Africa and South America, although it is native to India. It’s called the miracle tree  or the tree of life. Why? … Read More

Tribute to Merita Alves

Tribute to a Woman Read a moving tribute to a patriotic Timorese woman by Ana Maria Ferreira

2021 Floods – Can you Help Timor-Leste?

Dear Valued Supporter, You have no doubt seen the devastation wreaked by the recent flooding in Timor-Leste. Lives have been lost and there has been a large amount of property damage. The impact has been exacerbated by a lengthy COVID-19 lockdown in … Read More

COVID in Timor-Leste

Up until very recently, the COVID-19 news from Timor-Leste was rather encouraging, as few cases were reported and people responded to social distancing and mask-wearing well. Churches had been closed, but parishes were ensuring that people had enough food. The … Read More

Education and Jobs

One of the main aims of repaying the debt of honour owed to the Timorese is to assist them in education and job creation. Lisa Wahab, the principal of Mary Immaculate Catholic School Bossley Park, is an educator with a … Read More

ATLAS Newsletter March 2021

Learn more about the projects that ATLAS is a part of, and help the Timorese with your support. ATLAS Newsletter March 2021

Children’s Protein Supplement Project Update

Brother Francis of the Missionaries of the Poor in Maliana reports that the Children’s Protein Supplement Project is going well. They now have 90 children attending. In the beginning the children were shy, but now come running when the Brothers … Read More

Rest in Peace, Jon Lewis

Jon Lewis was a great photographer. He died recently after a long illness. East Timor supporters are indebted to him for many of his works, not the least of which is his iconic portrait of Paddy Kenneally (father of ATLAS … Read More

The Great Untold Story of World War II

Australian troops entered a territory administered by Portugal, a neutral power World War II, against the express wishes of the administrators. The Australian invasion breached Portuguese neutrality. The Japanese were moving south in the early 1940’s and fully intended to … Read More

Fundraising at St Marys

On the weekend of December 12/13, ATLAS’s indefatigable Rayella Haines conducted another successful stall. All proceeds will go to ATLAS works in Timor-Leste. Thanks to generous donors and the cooperation of the Parish Priest of Our Lady of the Rosary … Read More

ATLAS Newsletter December 2020

Learn more about the projects that ATLAS is a part of, and help the Timorese with your support. ATLAS Newsletter for December 2020

The Timorese people finally freed themselves from Indonesian control

Forty-five years ago, on 7 December 1975, East Timor was invaded by the Indonesian army– the fourth largest in the world. Troops, ships and planes swept onto the half-island, killing scores of people. The Timorese were at the mercy of … Read More

COVID no match for Timorese seasonal workers

North Queensland benefitted from the presence of 100 Timorese workers in 2020. Despite all the bad news that COVID brought, crops were harvested and the community was strengthened through this partnership. Once again, the Timorese people came to the aid … Read More

ATLAS Newsletter September 2020

Newsletter September 2020

In the pink in Timor-Leste

ATLAS helps support the Dominican School at Hera in Timor-Leste. This school transport will not be missed on the winding Timorese roads.

Good meals for children

In Saburai near Maliana in Timor-Leste, the Missionaries of the Poor (MOP) Brothers feed over 50 children each Saturday. They provide a protein rich meal to help the children’s development. Br David (in the white habit) is responsible for this … Read More

ATLAS Newsletter June 2020

Read about Timor’s current efforts towards economic stability and how the desperately poor are being helped. There’s a letter from ATLAS chairman and an announcement about our Virtual Timor Time Luncheon. ATLAS Newsletter June 2020

Fard’s Gift

ATLAS received this wonderful account of Patrick Knight and his family who have generously supported St Therese’s Orphanage at Maubara for many years. ATLAS and the Maubara Orphanage thank the Knight Family sincerely for their wonderful support. “In 2008 at … Read More

ATLAS Newsletter March 2020

In this newsletter you can read about the great work you are helping to do in Timor-Leste. There are some interesting facts about the development of our friends, the Timorese people. ATLAS Newsletter March 2020

ATLAS Newsletter December 2019

Read up about ATLAS projects and how your donations help the poor. ATLAS Newsletter December 2019

ATLAS Newsletter September 2019

The September newsletter makes for good reading on ATLAS projects. ATLAS Sept2019 NL

How the Timorese saved our men

World War II On 17 December 1941 t
he first of 400 men of the 2/2nd Independent Company began to arrive in Dili, violating Portuguese neutrality. Later, another 300 of the 2/4th Independent Company landed There were never more than 700 … Read More

A big thank you to a big-hearted group of supporters!

The St Mary’s Parish Craft Group and Computer class has once again excelled itself in its fund raising efforts for St Therese’ Orphanage, Maubara, Timor-Leste. The craft group raised $850 through sales of its products and from the proceeds from … Read More

Education – Key to Development

In 2019, ATLAS is proud to continue to assist with education in Timor-Leste. We are supporting twelve students from Maubara orphanage attending Senior Secondary Schools or Technical High Schools in Dili. This is only possible through the generosity of donors … Read More

ATLAS Newsletter Nov/Dec 2018

Review of our work, fundraisers extraordinaire, and a great gift for Christmas. ATLAS NovDec2018 NL

ATLAS Newsletter September 2018

September’s newsletter details the very successful Timor Time. The generous nurses of Adelaide also feature.

2018 Timor Time – a great success

The fourth Timor Time was held at Dooleys Lidcombe Catholic Club on Saturday 25 August 2018, and what a great day it was!  Over 190 people packed the beautiful venue, gathering together for a great meal, a social catch-up, and … Read More

Graduate Nurses extend a helping hand

For a number of years, Graduate Nurses from Calvary Health Care Adelaide have raised funds to support Health projects in Timor-Leste previously conducted by Sister Joan Westblade RIP. The 2017 Graduates were no exception. Despite a very challenging year of … Read More

Sewing school uniforms in Timor-Leste

Liz and Gordon Biok recently went to the Carmelite Convent in Fatuhada to meet Sister Santina and Sister Inacia and talk about the sewing project. Four sisters were there and they freely discussed the progress of the first stage of … Read More

Save the Date! It’s Timor Time 2018

You may have noticed a new image on our homepage. That’s is because we are excited to announce that we have organised our Timor Time event for 2018! The event will be held at Dooley’s Lidcombe Catholic Club on Saturday … Read More

Eyeing Timor-Leste – A Successful Visit

Jenny Shepherd and Kylie Knellwolf, nurses, and Nicole Frazer, clinical support officer, visited some ATLAS projects in Timor-Leste in May 2018. The main purpose was to undertake a vision screening program. The program facilitates diagnosis, intervention and treatment to optimise … Read More

The latest “Timor Time” – 2017

A wonderful afternoon was enjoyed by over 200 people at Dooleys Lidcome Catholic Club. Special guest from Timor-Leste was Alipio Simoes, a student who has just completed his IT Diploma in South Australia. The entertainment was superb and the food … Read More

Another terrific effort

Rayella Haines held a garage sale recently, bringing in much-needed funds for the young women being educated in Timor-Leste by ATLAS. As usual, she spent a great deal of time sourcing goods, pricing them, advertising the event and being on … Read More

Raffle Winners!

All proceeds of the Raffle go to St Therese’s Orphanage in Maubara, Timor-Leste.

The raffle was drawn Christmas Eve, 2017 by Father Brendan Murphy, Parish Priest of Our Lady of The Rosary, St Mary’s.

1st Prize…. Xmas Hamper

Ms. Marina Haines from Concord

2nd Prize….

“Vitál Woodwork” – A great development

During August 2017, Vitál’s wife Francisca attended ETDA (East Timor Development Agency), an independent not-for-profit NGO providing vocational training in Dili. She completed a 4 week course in word processing, spreadsheets and presentations. The computer training is already benefiting ATLAS with Francisca … Read More

June/July Newsletter

Newsletter – a little late, but full of interesting goodies.NL July 2017

Craft Group Sales and Donations

The members of the Craft Group at St Marys have been long time supporters of the orphanage at Maubara, Timor Leste. They generate funds through the sale of their lovely craft products and through coin collections made at each meeting. … Read More

Supporting ATLAS projects

Mother’s Day presented a great opportunity for Rayella Haines, an ATLAS member and parishioner of Our Lady of the Rosary Parish, St Marys, to run a stall to raise funds for the children at Maubara orphanage. The stall was very … Read More

Chris’s Timor-Leste News

In this last visit we enrolled Vitál’s wife in a computer course which she started on July 3. This will be followed by an administration and finance course to improve her business skills so she can look after the paperwork … Read More

Getting to Understand Each Other

In the last twelve months ATLAS has invested in improving communications in the Woodwork Project by funding language training. Last August 2016 while in Dili Chris Scharf completed a two week Basic Tetun course at the Dili Institute of Technology … Read More

Claiming the date for Timor Time 2017!

Keep this date free for Timor Time….   Sunday August 20 at Dooleys Lidcombe Catholic Club from 11:30 a.m. sharp to 2:00 p.m. sharp   A great time for a great cause!

Raffle Winners

The Raffle was drawn on 19 March 2017   Congratulations to: 1st prize    Mr Del Christie of Blaxland 2nd prize   Mr Paul McGrath of Moorebank 3rd prize   Howard Vanjour of OLR St Marys   Two consolation hampers: … Read More

ATLAS supports young women’s education

ATLAS Support After receiving a proposal from the Carmelite Sisters early in 2016 and studying the feasibility of the project, ATLAS decided to provide financial support. An agreement between the two parties was then made which covered areas such as … Read More

Education of Girls and Young Women in Timor-Leste

The Situation   Women and girls in developing countries are often denied opportunities for education.    Yet it is one of the most critical areas of development and the single most effective way to improve the lives of individuals and … Read More

Woodwork Project: Vitál’s Sydney Experience

In the month of October 2016 Vitál de Jesus from the ATLAS Woodwork Project, visited Australia for ATLAS Timor Time 2016 Luncheon, some woodwork training and promotional work for ATLAS. On arrival Vitál was pleased to catch up with old … Read More

Visit of Sister Inacia

Sister Inacia Mafalda, a Carmelite Sister, arrived in Sydney in October 2016 as a guest of ATLAS. The primary purpose of her visit was to attend and speak at the Timor Time 2016 Luncheon as well as to make contact … Read More

Timor Time 2016

Timor Time was held again at Dooleys Catholic Club in Lidcombe. It was a great day!   There were over 230 guests, and Dooleys’ lovely room could not have held any more.   Special guests included Sister Inacia Mafalda, a … Read More

Helping Vitál’s business to develop

A business support agency known as IADE came to Vitál’s house to meet Vitál & Francisca and to look at the woodwork business. When Vitál showed him the crosses and educational equipment the man said “Oh, this is a very … Read More

Progress in Aileu

Chris wrote of his experiences in the countryside: “At Aileu we visited the local school which has facilities to enable children with disabilities to learn there. The staff were incredibly enthusiastic to show us the school, and as with most … Read More

Completion of Water Project in Dili

ATLAS member Chris Scharf made a site visit on 11th August 2016, and confirmed that water is now delivered to the water tanks at the women’s accommodation on the top of the hill (as in the scope of the original … Read More

Timor Time 2016

Who wants to be a very lucky Melbourne Cup winner? Come along to Timor Time for some fun with a purpose – the support of ATLAS projects in Timor-Leste Timor Time will be on Sunday 16 October, 2016 12 noon … Read More

Success!!! Woodwork Project relocated

Why is something simple such a great thing? Finding land and building a shed in East Timor is not as simple as going to a real estate to buy land and then down to Bunnings to buy the materials. Vitál … Read More

Meeting Sister Inacia

Recently, members of the ATLAS Board had the pleasure of meeting in Canberra with Sister Inacia Malfalda Fatima from Timor-Leste.  Sister Inacia is responsible, on behalf of the Carmelite Sisters, for the program of financial support which ATLAS provides for … Read More

Girls’ Education: A Lifeline to Development

Women and girls in developing countries are often denied opportunities for education.[1]  Yet, it is one of the most critical areas of development and the single most effective way to improve the lives of individuals and families as well as … Read More

Newsletter April 2016


Save the date for Timor Time!

Friends, our next Timor Time is set for Sunday, October 16, for lunch at Dooley’s Lidcombe. Come along for great prizes!


Institutu Ciençias Religiosas (ICR, or College Bispo Medeiros) has 300 students studying to be teachers and social workers. Here Chris saw last year’s ATLAS water project, which means that the students and teachers now have accessible water at the college.  … Read More

Disabled people

After visiting the piggery site, the group went to Metinaro near the army base and visited a community house for disabled people, most of whom are crippled. A training centre is being built, so that the disabled people can teach  … Read More


Chris went with Father Adriano Ola and Department of Agriculture officials to inspect a piggery site which is on a large section of Diocesan land at Hera. Father Adrian would like to develop a piggery here to breed and sell … Read More

Kitchen at Maubara

Sister Inacia and the Carmelite Sisters are in the final stages of finishing off the new kitchen at Maubara  Orphanage.  They have had an amazing job done! Chris Scharf reported that they needed to assess the old tank, which was … Read More

Chega! Exhibition

A group including Chris went to see the Chega! Exhibition in the old Balide gaol. The Museum details many of the nightmares experienced by East Timorese people during World War II, and during the Invasion and Occupation which ended in … Read More


ATLAS Timorese employee Vitál de Jesus gave Chris some lessons in how to make crosses in the woodwork project. Chris saw how hard Vitál works and how proficient he has become in this promising venture. The saw and sander Vitál … Read More

Chris Scharf’s visit to Timor-Leste

In February, Chris Scharf visited Timor-Leste on behalf of ATLAS.  He was there for two months, meeting those involved in ATLAS projects, assessing the work being done on the ground and making recommendations to the ATLAS Board. He also looked … Read More

An Anniversary Year

The people of Timor-Leste have observed many anniversaries this past year. It is 40 years since the first Proclamation of Independence of the Democratic Republic of Timor Leste, which occurred on November 28, 1975.  At that time, the Indonesian military … Read More

The Maubara Orphanage

  Progress is evident in the building of the new kitchen at St Therese’s Orphanage, Maubara. Thanks to the untiring efforts of the Carmelite Sisters and the generosity of ATLAS donors, the building is half way to being complete.   … Read More

Remembering, not forgetting

ATLAS was founded in memory of Paddy Kenneally, an Australian commando who was forever grateful to the Timorese for the assistance they gave Australia during World War II.   Paddy always said: “All we ever brought them was misery.”   … Read More

Newsletter – September-October 2015

Welcome to the ATLAS September Newsletter. Download it here: ATLAS-Newsletter-Sept2015 Timor Time was a wonderful event. on September 27th. The newsletter will fill you in…. You can have this newsletter sent to you by email if you wish.  Subscribe by joining … Read More

Timor Time!

An Information Day for ATLAS, (Australia Timor-Leste Advancement Society), which included a most enjoyable dinner, was held on Sunday 27th September at Dooleys Catholic Club Lidcombe. The Board and Committee of ATLAS organised the event, and the 200 people who … Read More

St Marys Craft Club

St Marys Parish Hall is a-buzz every Thursday morning St Marys Craft Club with the sound of chatter, the clack of knitting needles and the whizz of crochet hooks! The Craft club is in action, producing all sorts of colourful … Read More

A Healthy Start

The right start in life is a healthy start – and that is the only start from which children can realise their promise and potential. We owe that to every child, everywhere. (UNICEF report 2013) Despite recent efforts, malnutrition remains … Read More

Newsletter – June 2015

Welcome to the ATLAS June Newsletter. Download it here: ATLAS-Newsletter-June2015

Don’t forget Timor Time on September 27th. A great opportunity to meet together, and support a great cause, plus enjoy a fine meal.
Read more or book a ticket…

You can have this newsletter sent to you by email if you wish.  Subscribe by joining our newsletter using the form on this page.

Sewing for their lives

For some years a group of women have gathered together in Dili as “St Joseph’s Sewing Group”. Their aim is to develop their sewing and management skills to make their group self-supporting. As a small and independent enterprise, the group … Read More

Children needing care

Children who do not have their biological parents to care for them can find themselves in situations of serious threat, particularly in the developing world. These children are the most likely to be neglected, discriminated against, exploited and suffering from … Read More

Give someone a fish….

Most people are aware that despite improvement in the last few years, nearly half of the Timorese population lives below the poverty line, in poor housing and without access to clean water and sanitation. A recent program designed to address … Read More

Newsletter – May 2015

Download the May 2015 Newsletter: ATLAS-Newsletter-May2015.

Here is the second newsletter of ATLAS, the Australia Timor-Leste Advancement Society. It was wonderful to know that ex-Prime Minister Xanana Gusmão attended Anzac Day ceremonies in Australia, and you can read about that in the newsletter. We’re going to be having an information event on Sunday 27th September which we think will interest you greatly. You can read about this and about St Therese’s Orphanage in this edition. Very best wishes to you from all at ATLAS.

If you’d like to subscribe to have the newsletter delivered directly to your in-box, please fill in the “Join our Newsletter” online form.

Timor Time

Come to an entertaining and informative lunch time event on Sunday 27th September at Dooley’s Catholic Club, Lidcombe, 12 noon for 12:30.

A great meal will be available at the bargain price of $48.00. Get a table of 8 together and enjoy the company of friends.

Visitors on Anzac Day

The strong links between Australian and Timorese people received an extra boost at the centenary of ANZAC in April 2015. Each capital city was fortunate to welcome a number of Timorese veterans in the very well-attended marches held on Anzac … Read More

Protecting vulnerable children

Despite the tremendous efforts to develop the country since it gained its independence in 1999, East Timor remains one of the poorest countries in Asia. 41% of the population live below the poverty line of US$0.88 cents per capita per … Read More

Newsletter – April 2015

Download the April 2015 Newsletter: ATLAS-Newsletter-April2015.pdf.

If you’d like to subscribe to have the newsletter delivered directly to your in-box, please fill in the “Join our Newsletter” online form.

Our Inspiration – John (Paddy) Kenneally

John (Paddy) Kenneally was a young private with the 2/2 Independent Company of the Australian Army which was stranded in Timor by the Japanese invasion of 1942.   After his return to Australia he did everything in his power to … Read More

Water on tap, but not yet up the hill

There is an educational institution in Dili called Instituto de Ciências Religiosas (ICR), and it is a formation centre for lay people and teachers for Catholic religious education which has been working successfully in Timor-Leste for 25 years. It has … Read More

We Wood Work

The woodwork project was established by Gerald Kenneally to honour the memory of his father “Paddy” Kenneally, an Australian soldier on Timor in 1942.There is demand in Timor-Leste for school furniture such as blackboards, cupboards, tables, desks, as well as … Read More

A Recent Visitor to Maubara Orphanage Shares Her Thoughts

We received this reflection from Meg Haynes, who with her friend, Anna Brooks, spent some time at the Maubara orphanage earlier this year. Both are ex-students of Radford College in Canberra. Meg is keen to keep contact with the orphanage and, hopefully, … Read More

ATLAS Newletter Spring Edition

Our first ever edition of the ATLAS Newsletter is now available for members and visitors to read. Thanks to our communications team for their hard work. I hope you enjot reading it and if there are any projects you want … Read More

Annual Report 2014

We are pleased to provide a copy of our Annual Report for all our members and supporters. This is the first annual report of ATLAS since its humble beginning just over 10 months ago and we have already come such … Read More

Maubara Orphanage East Timor – Slide Show

Check out our latest presentation on St Therese Orphanage, Maubara in Timor Leste. Maubara Slide Show (Posted by Greg Mills)

News from St Therese’s Orphanage, Maubara, East Timor

Recently ATLAS received a report from Sister Inacia, Carmelite Sister, responsible for St Therese’s Orphanage, Maubara, East Timor. It provides details about the life and activities of the children. We are very pleased to share this information with you. One … Read More

Water Project Fund Raising Raffle

We are are conducting a raffle to raise money for a water reticulation project to source fresh water for St Thomas Aquinas College, Dili (Institutu Ciençias Religiosas – ICR). This organisation is an Institute of higher education which is owned … Read More

Hillston Parish Fund Raising

This week we received a Wonderful donation from the Community of Our Lady of Good Counsel Hillston of $2600 to go towards the support of the St Theres’s Orphanage at Maubara. At present, St Therese’s provides a home for 46 … Read More

ANZAC Day 2014

Today we remember those Australian men and women who gave their lives for my homeland, Australia. However today I also wish to honour the many East Timorese who gave their lives protecting the men of 2/2nd and 2/4th commando units … Read More

Welcome to the ATLAS Blog

We are pleased to announce the start of the ATLAS Blog, where we will keep you informed of the current projects by ATLAS. Please contact us for any further details or to help support the ATLAS cause. (Written by ATLAS.)