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    Thank you

    To all who have supported ETWA and Koperativa LO’UD over this past year, we extend our heart felt gratitude. It’s been a year of transformation for ETWA as we strive to increase our capacity in providing effective and sustainable support to Koperativa LO’UD and the blossoming ‘handcrafts’ community of Timor-Leste.

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    ETWA is a small Australian not-for-profit with a big heart for rural women in Timor-Leste. Our partnerships are based on the principles of reciprocity, economic justice and cultural preservation. <a href=”https://plus.google.com/108534910587155985222” rel=”publisher”>Find us on Google+</a> Learn more about who ETWA is: ABOUT  ETWA Team PROJECTS PARTNERS

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    A partnership between ETWA & LO’UD What is Fo-Ba-Malu? A design collaboration project and textile brand A collaborative poverty alleviation partnership Fairly traded, plant dyed, hand-woven textiles, in a unique product range, designed for a contemporary landscape Fo-Ba-Malu means ‘means giving to each other’ in Tetum, Timor-Leste’s national language. This partnership and project embodies this […]

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    LO’UD is a women’s Cooperative with more than 70 members living in three communities in the Lautem District of Timor-Leste. LO’UD women speak with one voice to end poverty in their communities! ETWA has been working with the women of LO’UD since 2004, when ETWA co-ordinated it’s first ‘Weaving Tour’. Key members of ETWA met […]

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    Visit Timor-Leste

    Timor-Leste epitomizes newness and timelessness with its’ proud contemporary history and age age-old cultures. The beauty of its landscapes and the resilience of its people will astound, energize, entertain but mostly challenge visitors to this tiny half-island. quick links to find out more Timor Adventures About Timor-Leste About Illiomar       This gallery of […]

Visit Timor-Leste

Timor-Leste lies amongst the isles of the Malay Archipelago, north of Australia. Courageously gaining independence in 2002, its people are now working to reduce poverty and build a sustainable economy. Although Timor-Leste is considered the poorest nation in Asia, its riches lie in culture and community.

Flights run from Darwin or Denpasar in Bali. Visa on arrival. Local travel is pretty easy; buses are reasonably reliable (although the waiting can be a killer) and there are plenty of 4WD hire companies in town. For more info, visit Tourism Timor-Leste

Be sure to head to Lospalos and visit the LO’UD Cooperative, where your delightful and endearing hostesses will treat you to local food, traditional weaving and dyeing workshops and lots of laughter. Contact us for more info.


Timor Adventures offers a range of unique tourism experiences, but each year, ETWA partners with Timor Adventures to offer Women’s Tours with a focus on – yep – you guessed it WOMEN! As well as visiting beautiful places, we spend time with the women, supporting their economic endeavours including weaving and their village-based accommodation.

There are tours for both for motorcycle riders and 4WD vehicles.


Here is what was said on previous tours:

Barb says

“I was fortunate enough to go on the recent women’s tour of East Timor, run by Timor Adventures. This tour took us to many women’s groups and co-ops in Dili as well as remote villages all over Timor and sought to provide income for these local groups and enterprises. I met many inspiring and amazing women, saw spectacular coast and country-side, as well as terrible poverty and a country struggling to recover from colonisation, invasion, war and genocide. If you are someone who is looking for a different travel experience – who would like to support Timorese people rebuilding their communities and lives at the grass-roots and would like to see a beautiful country at the same time, then I urge you to make the effort to go. It will be the experience of a life time!”  Barb

Caroline says

“Shirley’s thorough research and connections within the local community enabled us to see the ‘real’ Timor Leste, travelling the countryside with knowledgeable Timorese guides who taught us much, drove safely and professionally and were fantastic company. The sights, sounds and sensations of Timor Leste were at the same time breathtakingly beautiful, heartbreaking, and profoundly inspiring. Most excitingly for me, the Women’s Tour provided a glimpse into the lived experience of the East Timorese women who so generously welcomed us into their homes, guest houses and Women’s Co-operatives, cooking us traditional fare, demonstrating weaving and sharing life experiences. These times, along with the meetings with Alola Foundation staff, proved to be highlights of my Tour. Viva Timor Leste!!!” Caroline

Emma Kate says

“Thank you so much Timor Adventures for an amazing journey through beautiful Timor Leste. We took on the roads, dodged the critters, travelled through some of the most amazing country side I have ever seen and were welcomed everywhere with the biggest smiles and open hearts. It was hard to leave such a wonderful place and I am already planning my next adventure back there. A special thanks to Shirley Carlos and Mana Vanna for providing such a well organised and fulfilling safe journey! I’ll be back for sure.” Emma Kate

More Information: Timor Adventures
Photo | Deb Salvagno

ETWA’s Mission

To support the well-being and self-sustainability of East Timorese women through socially, culturally, economically and environmentally sustainable community programs, particularly in the handcrafts industry. We attempt to develop relationships based on reciprocity, so the things we learn from our friends in Timor-Leste are equally as important as the gift of support we bring. From Timorese […]

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ETWA’s Objective

ETWA identified the following 10 objectives to direct our priorities in Timor-Leste and Australia: To facilitate the growth and development of business skills for women as entrepreneurs within our partner groups in Timor-Leste To build and sustain relationships of solidarity between Australia and Timor-Leste which are based on maintaining cross cultural links and a commitment […]

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CTKDS, Cooperativa Tais Kultura Dezenvolvimento Sustentavel, Los Palos.

ETWA’s Values

Key values consistent with our overall mission include: Prioritising the needs and aspirations of our East Timorese partners Cooperation and mutual support Respect for the cultural integrity and intellectual property of East Timorese weavers Accountability and transparency in our stakeholder relationships Environmental protection and sustainability Ensuring fair trade principles and prices are adhered to Commitment […]

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Photo | Maite

ETWA’s Focus

ETWA identified the following five focus areas to help guide our strategic direction and program priorities. These five lenses are used to explore potential projects and partners, to prioritize our work and to evaluate impacts and outcomes: 1. Economic 2. Social 3. Cultural 4. Environmental 5. Educational

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