We are excited to unveil to you the new, strategic focus of our organisation.
We have long recognised that the health challenges of Timor-Leste – from rampaging tuberculosis, the explosive progression of the HIV epidemic, the worst malnutrition in Asia, and the highest rates of rheumatic heart disease in the world – are not going to be solved by a single clinic.
There is a distinct opportunity for us to expand our fight against these diseases, to involve whole communities, whole districts, and eventually the whole nation.
Drawing on our years of proven success at Bairo Pite Clinic, this organisation is moving forward with a new strategy and a new name:
Building Capacity & Partnerships in Health
Maluk means ”our people” in Tetun
To achieve this, we are working from the historic strengths of our organisation, but now sharpening our focus and restructuring our work into seven strategic programs, each targeting a clear need:
Training Timorese Doctors
Almost a thousand junior Timorese doctors have been educated in classrooms but have almost no opportunities in further clinical training. An undertrained doctor can lead to a wrong diagnosis, a wrong treatment, and a fatal outcome. Along with the Royal Australian College of Surgeons, we are delivering the only accredited training for General Practice in Timor-Leste, and are set to expand this training program to equip these doctors to fight the nation’s health problems for themselves.
Training Timorese Nurses and Midwives
A health service is only as good as its personnel, and every domain of the health sector in Timor-Leste is crying out for skills training and clinical support. Nursing and midwifery are two of the fundamental professions delivering health that need to be supported and improved. We will equip and send out teams of Timorese trainers in nursing and midwifery to work shoulder to shoulder with their colleagues in raising the standard of care across the district hospitals of Dili district, and ultimately the nation.
A burgeoning HIV epidemic unfolding in a country unprepared. Stopping this HIV epidemic before it takes hold, by developing the leading centre in HIV care, and then utilising our unique expertise to support other centres to form a unified front against the spread of the disease.
The highest rates of tuberculosis in Asia, with half of active cases going undiagnosed. Young children contracting the disease in infancy, often with fatal consequences. Tackling tuberculosis in Timor-Leste, by leading a team of our experienced Timorese health workers to take the fight against tuberculosis out to communities, including homes, schools and workplaces, to find these cases and facilitate preventative treatment for the young children, ultimately expanding the program to train similar health care workers for the whole nation.
Rheumatic Heart Disease
Shown in 2016 to have the highest rates in the world, with as many as 1 in 20 school children affected in some groups. This preventable disease continues to kill children, young adults and especially pregnant mothers. Expanding our shared program (with East Timor Hearts Fund) to detect the disease in its early stages, and stop it in its tracks through treatment with penicillin. Raising community and government awareness to end this disease in Timor-Leste.
The worst malnutrition in Asia, with thousands of children dying each year, and 58% of children stunted in their growth and development, with lifelong consequences.
We want to ensure that no child in Timor-Leste dies or suffers for lack of nutrition. Drawing on our expertise in malnutrition care, we will develop a model malnutrition centre in a local Timorese district hospital which can then be upscaled and rolled out to district hospitals across the country
In a country wracked by domestic violence, unplanned pregnancy and gender inequality, many Timorese women are trapped in disadvantage, with many having seven or more children without the means to raise them. Other than the social difficulties this involves, it is driving many of the major health problems of the nation. Working with the Humanitarian Aid & Relief Trust, we will expand our outreach program to the districts, forming new womens’ groups to educate and empower Timorese women to access the health and family planning services that they and their families need.
These new programs will be delivered from our new headquarters in Comoro (Dili), in close collaboration with Ministry of Health and other NGO partners. Each of these programs is designed to invest directly into the local health services, strengthening their capacity to solve their own health problems.
We are excited to have you partner with us in this new direction…
Last week we had our first day in the new office with the new team
The team is an inspiring mix of our longstanding very dedicated expat staff and the outstanding Timorese staff who have led and delivered these chosen projects of increasing size and complexity over the previous years. We have a lot of work ahead of us, and none of it would be possible without your ongoing support.
We will get back to you in the next month with the detailed plan. From everyone who is determined to help change the health of this nation – thank you for your continued generous support.
Dr Chris Fenton – CEO Maluk Timor (Australia)
Dr Jeremy Beckett – CEO Maluk Timor (Timor-Leste)
And the rest of the board