Timorese women face many challenges in accessing health and social services, particularly in areas outside of the capital, Dili. Even within Dili the social norms often hinder women seeking the help that they need.
There is no single problem that lies beneath these realities, but rather a combination of factors that can be tackled through
eduction and cultural change.
The challenges facing women in Timor-Leste
Women’s challenges are across all aspects of their lives : maternal and child health, gender inequality, lack of access to finances and transport, reliance on traditional beliefs and health practices, and of special concern is the level of gender-based violence.
6-10 women in relationships have experienced violence in the home
of abused women reported severe violence
of abused womend said their children had been present
Shame and stigma remain a huge barrier to solving the domestic violence problem with a traumatised nation which has grown
acustomed to violence. Many women even see domestic violence as normal or not a serious problem.
How Maluk Timor is helping to empower women
1. Working with our partners
2. Empowering change with women’s “health clubs”
There are currently six women’s health clubs operational in the target area. Women get together over refreshments and share in small group discussions.
The women sit in small groups and select a topic from the topic “Menu”. Facilitators lead discussions on the relevant topics as well as ‘the Special of the Day’ which includes a guest who specialises in the selected topic.
The health clubs
Women discussing post-natal care in a “Coffee Club”
3. Women’s Crisis Care Team
Maluk Timor provides a crisis care team of social care workers working out of community health centres.
Our crisis team helps women in who are facing critical issues like sexual assault, gender-based violence, unplanned pregnancy, homelessness, mental health and
3. Family Health Promoters (PSF’s)
Family health promoters are volunteers chosen by the community as a source of medical and health knowledge. Maluk Timor then provides a training program as well the provision of essential equipment and supplies, as well as a small amount of money to cover the cost of
PSFs attend twice yearly training workshops their transport to Dili, their accommodation and meals covered during the training.
One of these training refreshers will be provided by the Australian Catholic Universities (ACU) team, focus on essentials of pregnancy, delivery and post-partum care.
The other annual workshop will be a three-day refresher on general health topics such nutrition, tuberculosis, hygiene and skin health.
Latest news from our women’s health & social care program
Help the Timorese people by helping Maluk Timor and their programs to improve general health and target diseases spreading in Timor-Leste.
We recognise and respond to women in high-risk situations and try to get them to a safe location for delivery.
Such a wonderful experience. We look forward to her return and sharing all she has learnt.
More than 50 women come together to celebrate women’s week and discuss topics like HIV and more.
58 Timorese women head to Suco Beloi to understand more about HIV and reproductive health issues.
Improvements are here as we embrace technological advancements and start training with our Australian subcommittee via Skype.
A total of 6 communities are now under the women’s health and social care program, sponsored by HART.
Australian RN Lauren Crase leads the nurse and midwife training for health workers in the region.