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Appeal for Donations of Money

OPMT: Organizacao Popular de Mulher Timor - The Popular Organisation of East Timorese Women

Funds needed to ship container of Sewing Materials from Sydney to Dili

There has been a splendid response from Canberra women of all ages to the OPMT call for sewing materials and equipment, to be forwarded to the women of East Timor. Some 150 cardboard boxes of material and several machines were deposited during December 2000!

After January 10th 2001 the sewing materials will be transported overland from Canberra with the kind assistance of Canberra Rotarians to the Australian Foundation for the Peoples of Asia and the Pacific (AFAP) depot in Sydney. The materials will then be transported via the normal sea route to Indonesia, and after that shipped onto AFAP's close indigenous partner Timor Aid / Tulan Rai Timor in Dili. From there the materials will be distributed to OPMT Sewing Programs throughout East Timor.

At the AFAP depot in Sydney, our contributions will be added to a container of much needed medical equipment, etc. However, with the return of most of our Defence forces, all Australian government assistance with transport of goods to East Timor is now at an end. AFAP sponsors the cost of sending containers to East Timor, which can cost $5000 to $6000 each.

AFAP is now making an appeal for donations towards the container shipping costs. All donations are tax deductible and receipts will be forwarded to the donor.

You can help in two ways:

1. Send a cheque made out to A.F.A.P. (East Timor containers)
    P.O. Box 12
    CROWS NEST, NSW 1585

2. Donations by telephone on your credit card
    Phone:  1800 007 308

With either method of donation, please:

Any other enquiries to AFAP -  Phone: (02) 9906-3792 Email:
OPMT: The Popular Organisation of East Timorese Women / Organizacao Popular de Mulher Timor
OPMT is a East Timorese women's organisation that has been dealing with the impact of Indonesian rule that has dominated their lives for the past 25 years culminating in the violence around the UN sponsored Popular Consultations in 1999. It is these women who have been dealing with those who have been severely psychologically and/or physically traumatised. They have been helping address the needs of women who are the main carers of children (many of whom are orphans), the injured, sick and the elderly. They have a vision for how the new country can support the people's needs. OPMT is a registered East Timorese non-government organization (ETNGO). See: OPMT Sewing Program in Timor Loro Sa'e
The Australian Foundation for the Peoples of Asia and the Pacific
AFAP is a nonprofit organization with headquarters in Sydney, Australia with development programs in the Asia-Pacific Region. It is an member of the Foundation of the Peoples of the South Pacific International (FSPI) network, the oldest, largest, and most experienced secular NGO network in the Pacific. AFAP promotes sustainable, self-reliant community development projects in the areas of institution building, health, education, literacy, agriculture, environmental protection, hospital rehabilitation, village improvement, disaster relief and rehabilitation and small industry development which emerge from the aspirations of the local people. Email:  As an ACFOA member, AFAP adheres to a Code of Conduct.
Timor Aid, also known as Timor Aid-Tulun Rai Timor

TA is a non-government aid organization founded by East Timorese, whose seat is in Dili. It provides relief, reconstruction and development aid to the people of East Timor. Besides relief and reconstruction work during the current emergency, Timor Aid also engages in long term development projects mainly in the areas of health, education, human resource development, the advancement of women, and income generation. As an ACFOA member, TA adheres to a Code of Conduct. TA is the aid and development arm of ETISC.
The OPMT Sewing Program is an ongoing OPMT activity. OPMT members voluntarily teach sewing and needlecraft five afternoons a week to widows, orphans and other socially disadvantaged Timorese women. The program is perceived as crucial to the aims and objectives of OPMT as it provides women with a means of establishing a level of economic self-sufficiency. The women are taught the skills necessary to either produce clothing and linen cheaply for their family needs or to set up their own small sewing businesses.

The program is vastly under-resourced; OPMT as an organisation is reliant on donations from supporters, particularly international supporters. However even if OPMT received sufficient funds it is difficult to obtain resources in East Timor as there are still no suppliers of sewing or needlecraft materials.

For this reason OPMT sought small donations of sewing and needlecraft materials from supporters in Canberra during December 2000.

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