Helping those in need in Timor-Leste
“Eye opening”, “awe-inspiring”, “humbling” and “rewarding” – just some of the words Notre Dame students use to describe their service-learning trip to Timor-Leste.
Students leave the comforts of home behind to take part in day-to-day activities performed by the Timorese community, such as gathering coffee in the steep hillside plantations and harvesting vegetables, including peanut crops.
This project is designed so students can explore everything from peacebuilding and reconciliation to climate change adaptation and food and water security in a developing country.
Bachelor of Behavioural Science / Bachelor of Arts (Social Justice and Politics) student, Phoebe Whittington, said the experience of working with Timorese women clearing a plot of land was both eye-opening and humbling.
“Seeing the sheer workload this group of women were having to undertake was hard to swallow. The friendships formed also enabled us to gain deep and personal insights into the challenges they face and a sense of what it is actually like to live in a vulnerable community,” Phoebe said.