The Project

Sao Francisco de Assis Parish in Atabae, Timor Leste, operates several community development projects to strengthen the economic opportunity of the local community.

The Parish requires a community development mentor to connect local farmers with market opportunities and promote their produce to consumers.

The Location

Sao Francisco de Assis Parish is located in Atabae, a regional town in Bobonaro district in Timor Leste.

Atabae is a small town approximately 3 hours from the country’s capital, Dili, and just a short drive to the north coast.

Note: For most assignments, accommodation is provided by the partner organisation. This accommodation has been assessed and approved by Palms Australia as being secure and has adequate utilities.

The Challenge

Atabae is a comparatively remote town in Timor Leste. Rural areas are often the least supported by aid or development assistance. Their isolation often makes it difficult to access opportunities that come much more easily to those living in urban areas. With little infrastructure in the towns that are inland from the coast.

Farmers supported by the Parish of Atabae face challenges connecting to commercial opportunities to sell their produce. There are several NGOs working to improve the profitability and sustainability of agriculture in Timor Leste. However, to connect local farmers to these NGOs and larger markets requires networking, marketing, and logistical expertise that needs to be developed.

About You

The Parish has requested a suitably qualified and experienced community development mentor. The successful candidate must demonstrate:

  • Suitable experience in community development, marketing and networking
  • Adaptability and flexibility
  • Cultural sensitivity and openness to working within a different cultural context
  • Willingness to work in Atabae for a minimum of 24 months, with limited resources and facilities
  • Willingness to engage their Australian community in promoting the work of the host organisation and their role.

Prior knowledge of Tetum (local language) or Timor Leste is not required for this role.

How You Will Help

You will work with local staff of the Parish in Atabae to provide professional skill development that will:

  • assist the farmers/vegetable growers to bring their produce to the market and help establish the outlet for selling their vegetables and rice,
  • utilise local networks of community organisations and local and international NGOs supporting agriculture in Timor Leste, and
  • provide the farmers with skills in marketing and understanding how the vegetable market works in the local context.

It is expected that at the conclusion of your assignment, this role will be able to be conducted by a local you have supported. This role complements the work of an English Teacher Mentor who will join the successful candidate in Atabae.

Note: The monthly living allowance enables you to live a modest local lifestyle. Based on the cost of living in a particular country, it covers food, your daily commute, communication and other local costs. It is not set to enable you to meet financial commitments at home, such as a mortgage or a personal loan.  It will not cover the costs of eating out and other entertainment. Read more about what is covered in our FAQ.

Think you have what it takes? Register your interest

    I am not a citizen of Australia or New Zealand.I am a citizen of Australia or New Zealand.
    * Successful applicants must be available to attend an orientation course in Sydney. Palms Australia will not fund international flights and will not sponsor visas to attend this course. Read our FAQ for more.