Information provided by Jill Forsyth OAM, Rotary Kew

Early this month, devastating floods and landslides saw lives lost and homes and livelihoods destroyed throughout Timor-Leste. The images that have come through are heartbreaking and Rotary Kew is rallying to provide much-needed support.

With well-established projects in Timor-Leste, Rotary Kew has relationships with trusted administration already on the ground who are actively providing emergency food, house repairs and clean water to those in need.

The Club already has the infrastructure set up through RAWCS (Rotary Australia World Community Service) for tax-deductible donations to assist: https://directory.rawcs.com.au/71-2013-14.

Funds raised through RAWCS will firstly be used for emergency food and cooking equipment, followed by clean-up costs and house repairs that will be chosen on a needs basis with priority given to widows, families and the homeless. Those living in refuges are currently receiving food, but will need immediate support in order to restore their homes to escape from circulating COVID.

Many Timorese have also lost their jobs and income, so the Club is providing a ‘job keeper’ US$40 payment for basic food for unemployed project workers. Beneficiaries will be identified through Kor Timor, Rotary Dili, the Alola Foundation, Hiam Health and Permatil.

In addition, the Club raises funds for long-term sustainable projects in Timor-Leste through the Club’s Fair Trade and Gift Shop, as well as sending donated household goods, clothing and shoes from the shop.

Recovery from the floods will take time and the need is great, if not desperate in many regional areas, and Rotary Kew is well placed to direct all possible support.