Category Archives: Uncategorized

Geelong Celebrates Timor-Leste Independence

During May, the City of Greater Geelong marked the 15th anniversary of East Timor’s Independence with a flag ceremony at City Hall. Approximately 60 people were in attendance, which included representatives from Geelong Friends of Viqueque, Geelong Friendship Health Inc and Geelong Viqueque Friendship Schools Inc.

Robyn Stevens, Manager Connected Communities emceed the event. Ms Stevens highlighted that the ceremony was a symbolic recognition of the connection between the people of Geelong and those of the District of Viqueque in East Timor.

“The local community has helped raise funds for the District of Viqueque, with the funds going towards the development of essential education and health services, including training teachers and nurses, and building and upgrading schools.

The flag ceremony was preceded by a student session, which included an excellent presentation by Christian College Year 12 Prefects Montana Jones, Millie Lowe, Cian Foster and Ronen Jafari who shared their learnings from their visits to East Timor.

Senior Sergeant Mark Lee from Victoria Police gave a heartfelt presentation on his work in East Timor as part of the first UN Police Force (INTERFET).

Sister Maria Moniz, who is the Principal of the Canossia Girls College in Baucau East Timor, and a guest of Sacred Heart College Geelong, read the Poem for Independence Day by Xanana Gusmao.

Christian Coll

Photo: SSgt Lee (right) with students from Christian College Geelong

Trivia Night – a great success!

The Trivia Night at St Joseph’s College was a great success with over 250 people attending.  Special thanks must go to Rosemary Friend, Louise Madden and Peter Cannon for their leadership of the organising committee, without whose persistence and dedication the night could not have gone ahead.


Whilst the official tally has yet to be done it can be confidently expected that the evening raised in excess of $10,000 which will be spent in promoting literacy projects with the District of Viqueque.


Beatriz’s War: Screening August 14

Special School Screening this Thursday August 14th at 7:00 pm at Clonard College, 225 Church Street Herne Hill. Tickets $15 / $10 concession.

For information phone 52 782155 or book directly at:


St Francis Xavier Raised $1800 for Estevao

Students at work

Students at work

Today Peter Cannon visited St Francis Xavier PS at Corio and met with teachers and students of Grade 6. The students told him how they had raised $1800 for their partner school in Timor Leste. They held a multi-cultural day, celebrating their diverse backgrounds and during the day had food stalls, played games and this was the means that they raised so much money. Peter briefly told them how he became involved in Timor which was because the Timorese gave they lives in support of our troops in WW2. At the end of the gathering the Principal, David O’Connor, introduced the school captains who presented Geelong-Viqueque Schools with a cheque. David and his Deputy, Lee Kooloos, have visited Viqueque in recent times.

Annual General Meeting

You are invited to attend the Annual General of the Geelong-Viqueque Friendship Schools Inc.

The special guests speakers are Jessie Lopez and Patrice Hall who have been responsible for the setting up of The Vegetable Garden Project at St Teresinha in Ossu.

The meeting starts at 7.00 pm Thursday 22 August 2013 and the venue is The Geelong College Middle School, 399 Aberdeen Street, Newtown.

Getting Goods to Viqueque

Rotary: Donations in Kind {DIK}

DIK is a major recycling operation run by volunteers providing  suitable items for people in need and it is Rotary Australia’s largest ongoing project. So far this Century 281 containers have been shipped with a value of $24,000,000 overseas aid.

Transporting goods – new and used – to East Timor has been made possible through this  great  Rotary project  with GVFS covering the cost per space in the container.  Shipments occur about every two months, earlier in the year we shipped desks and chairs from PLC and sports equipment / stationery  collected by SJC  and St Ignatius College. The  May container included  second hand laptops courtesy of SJC and  11 boxes  of stationery which had been  stored for sometime in the Rotary warehouse looking for a good home.   When goods arrive in Dili via Singapore, Daryl Mills [ current LO volunteer] clears customs ,  at this stage we need to restrict what we ship due to the high cost of delivery to Viqueque. Currently,  Br Frank Hennessey is collecting and storing goods and they will  be  delivered to Viqueque during the June/July visit this year.=