CWS Asia


Timor-Leste

4x4-timor-leste-solders

Sergeant Alonso, an experienced F-FDTL facilitator and close CWS ally, leading a basic educational session about HIV in the country. Photo: CWS

Aderito Ruben joined 19 other IOB students for a 3-day Master Trainer workshop where 23 CWS-supported F-FDTL peer educators were practicing their recently honed education / training skills. Photo: CWS

CWS is striving to raise people awareness on HIV/AIDS in Timor Leste by providing correct information on HIV and AIDS, as well as reproduction health, through trainings and information sessions. CWS' staffer is starting an information session in Baucau Disrict, the second-largest city in East Timor. He uses the flipchart to explain about what the virus is, how it is spread and how to prevent one from contracting the virus. Condom use demonstration is also included the information session.


CWS is striving to raise people awareness on HIV/AIDS in Timor-Leste by providing correct information on HIV and AIDS, as well as reproduction health, through trainings and information sessions. CWS’ staffer is starting an information session in Baucau Disrict, the second-largest city in Timor-Leste. He uses the flipchart to explain about what the virus is, how it is spread and how to prevent one from contracting the virus. Condom use demonstration is also included the information session. Photo: CWS

Since a year after its independence, Timor-Leste has welcomed CWS team members to work with groups affected by the risks and realities of HIV/AIDS. HIV prevention and care were CWS’s first focus, with support for information-sharing, education and increased access to voluntary counseling and testing as well as an initiative to help ensure justice and empowerment for people living with HIV. CWS worked with faith-based organizations to increase awareness about HIV/AIDS among adolescents, and helped found the country’s first peer support group for HIV+ persons, Esperança. Their mission is to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS, visit HIV+ persons in their homes to provide nutritious food and other support, and to fight stigma and discrimination against people living with HIV.

Since 2010 CWS has partnered with the Timor-Leste army, or F-FDTL, to raise awareness, change behavior, prevent infection and reduce stigma for F-FDTL members, their families and their neighbors.

Latest News

Remote and Often Forgotten Place, Atauro Island, Is Reached By CWS

CWS Timor Leste | September 10, 2017

Recently CWS—Timor Leste defense forces team took the ferry to Atauro Island to lead an HIV info-sharing and education session at the national Navy post there. Atauro is a small island just 25 kilometers north of TimorLeste’s capital, Dili. Master Seaman Sebastiao Soares, the commander of the island post, said we was very appreciative that […]

A Young Soldier’s New Skills Help Him Share His Knowledge

CWS Timor Leste | August 19, 2017

Sergeant Sipriano Maia is among the first of a new generation of the Timor Leste defense forces’ (F-FDTL) HIV education and prevention activities facilitators. He joined the military in 2009 and has attended many health information sessions through the years. Based on his strong knowledge of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STI) causes, prevention […]

Understanding the Cost of HIV Infection Changes Attitudes and Behaviors

CWS Timor Leste | July 25, 2017

As part of continuing joint initiative to prevent HIV and other sexually transmitted infections in the Timor Leste army (F-FDTL), Sergeant Manuel da Silva was recently joined by CWS staff to lead HIV prevention info-sharing sessions at the Lere Anan Timur military housing complex in Metinaro, which is just about an hour outside of Dili. […]

“We all need this kind of information so we can stay healthy”: Youth Expand CWS HIV Awareness Reach in Timor Leste

CWS Timor Leste | June 13, 2017

Aderito Ruben is a third-year student with the Faculty of Economics at the Dili Institute of Business (IOB) in Timor Leste’s capital city. Recently, at the invitation of their national army (F-FDTL), he joined 19 other IOB students for a 3-day Master Trainer workshop where 23 CWS-supported F-FDTL peer educators were practicing their recently honed […]

Reaching a Remote and At-Risk Community with HIV-AIDS Information

CWS Timor-Leste | May 8, 2017

Recently the CWS Timor Leste team traveled with a national army (F-FDTL) colleague to remote and isolated Oecusse to share HIV information with F-FDTL personnel stationed there. Though part of Timor Leste, Oecusse is surrounded by Indonesia and can only be reached by boat from Dili (or by air or overland through Indonesia). This isolation […]

We Monitor and Evaluate … To Improve Our Efforts

CWS Timor Leste | April 3, 2017

Expecting 20 people at most to join a Monitoring & Evaluation training workshop recently, CWS staff in Timor Leste were pleased to welcome 25 and to hear Corporal Salvador do Santos, who is a medic in the national army (F-FDTL), talk about why he and others joined the workshop. “In fact, I have never had […]

Peer Teaching-Learning for HIV Education, Testing and Counseling Expands

CWS Timor Leste | March 15, 2017

Dr. Fransisco da Costa is one of two doctors assigned to the Timor-Leste army (F-FDTL) small naval unit in Hera, which is a town about 30 minutes outside Timor-Leste’s capital city, Dili. Both doctors recently joined CWS-supported workshops about HIV counseling and testing (HCT) as well as diagnosing and treating other sexually transmitted infections (STI). […]

“We need correct information to protect ourselves”

CWS Timor Leste | February 17, 2017

In January the CWS Timor Leste team went to Bobonaro District on the country’s western border with Indonesia for an information session with F-FDTL members stationed there. In earlier postings, Sergeant Ernesto A. da Costa, the current Bobonaro commander is very familiar with the CWS HIV prevention program and said, “I have learned a lot […]

Timor-Leste Team Hosts U.S. HIV Education-Prevention Project Donors

CWS Timor Leste | January 30, 2017

CWS Program Manager Odete Peloy and her team welcomed two staff from the U.S. Department of Defense HIV/AIDS Prevention Program (DHAPP) in early January, 2017, so they could meet, first hand, with the team working to reduce HIV infection and to address related health and behavior issues, within the national army. Commander Mark Johnson, MD, […]

National Army Reaches a Key Milestone In Addressing Health Risks for Soldiers

CWS Timor-Leste | January 11, 2017

In an important milestone event for Timor-Leste’s nation army (F-FDTL) its own doctors facilitated an HIV-STI education-information workshop along with HIV Counseling and Testing (HCT) for about 100 people at its Metinaro training base near Dili. A key participant in the day’s activities was the base commander Lieutenant Colonel Benedito Dias Quintas, who was fully […]

Marie Stopes International Staff Join CWS Team Members to Support Key Army Personnel in Learning More About STIs

CWS Timor Leste | December 4, 2016

In recent years CWS has educated and supported a number of Timor Leste’s national army (F-FDTL) personnel in HIV testing and counseling (HTC) work; and now the F-FDTL has established an HTC center at the Metinaro training base near Dili, the country’s capital. Dr. Paul Dos Santos is a doctor at the base and a […]

One Timor-Leste Soldier’s Call To Help Stop HIV Infection

CWS Timor Leste | November 13, 2016

Sergeant Luis da Costa is the commander of a 15-person Timor-Leste army (F-FDTL) post in Becora, a neighborhood in Dili. Since it is such a small post, not all personnel have had a chance in the context of CWS partnership with the army, to join in HIV and STI awareness-raising activities – and, importantly, to […]

IEC materials to improve 200+ students’ knowledge about HIV-AIDS and other STI risks

CWS Timor Leste | October 12, 2016

Recently the CWS Timor-Leste team received an unexpected visitor – a woman on a mission. Literally! Sister Julia Shideler stopped in our Dili office in search of information-education-communication (IEC) materials about HIV prevention. Born in Oakland, CA, Sister Julia is a Roman Catholic Maryknoll missionary who has worked in Timor-Leste for the last 9 years. […]

HIV testing and counseling

CWS Timor Leste | September 9, 2016

Recently a Timor-Leste army (F-FDTL) medical team, accompanied by senior officers responsible for operations and human resources, visited Jakarta to learn about Indonesia’s experience with HIV prevention, treatment and care in its military. The delegation visited local NGOs, Angsa Merah and Karisma, to see ‘best practice’ HIV testing and counseling, including how to inform clients […]

Dr. Anacleto Soares on becoming a Master Trainer

CWS Timor Leste | April 30, 2016

Dr. Anacleto Soares, 32, is a doctor at the Timorese army (F-FDTL) training base in Metinaro, about an hour outside Dili, which is the capital of Timor-Leste, which he left in 2003 to go to medical school in Cuba. He has recently returned and, surprisingly, at a recent workshop he told our CWS colleagues, “When […]

Change thought after HIV education session

CWS Timor Leste | March 28, 2016

“We thought that HIV infects someone because God is angry.”, said Mr. Alcino Araujo, the head of Teki-Teki Surikmas neighborhood near the headquarters of the Timorese armed forces in Dili. After joining the HIV education session, which was held for neighbors of army installation, he was relieved to know otherwuse. “We have manyyoung men and […]

HIV Counseling and Testing (HCT) workshop

CWS Timor Leste | February 28, 2016

Among the participants in this month’s HIV Counseling and Testing (HCT) workshop was Second Lieutenant Anabela da Cruz, a doctor with the Timor-Leste army (F-FDTL). “When I returned from medical school in Cuba in 2012,” she said, “I was happy to hear about CWS support for HIV prevention in my country. As a doctor I […]

Annual review of successes and challenges, plus planning for 2016

CWS Timor Leste | January 20, 2016

Recently our small CWS team in Timor Leste met with key HIV-AIDS education and prevention project partner, the national army (F-FDTL), for our annual review of successes and challenges, plus planning next steps and activities for 2016. CWS colleagues received positive feedback regarding our successful joint 2015 World AIDS Day event, and meeting participants agreed […]

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