The Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste was rocked by flooding over the Easter weekend, April 3rd and 4th, part of a massive weather system that has significantly impacted the region, displacing tens of thousands of people and resulting in dozens of casualties. Per The Conversation, over 400mm of rain fell in the capital city of Dili, and floodwater and debris have washing into urban centers, causing untold damage. Elsewhere, in nearby Indonesia, more than 150 individuals have died due to the storms.
The impacts of the natural disaster have been doubly damaging, especially in Timor-Leste, where COVID-19 cases have been on the rise. Floods cut power to some COVID treatment centers, and authorities have had to issue an emergency lift of restrictions meant to curb the spread of the virus. This is an evolving natural disaster with multiple moving parts, impacting hundreds of thousands of people.
Now, organizations from around the globe—some of them coffee companies who work directly with Timor-Leste's growing community of coffee producers—are helping to raise funds to aid those who have lost so much in the floods. We’ve compiled a list of donation sites for efforts taking place in Timor-Leste. If you are able to, please consider giving to help those who desperately need it.
Raw Material: The Australian-based coffee importer has set up a DonorBox in hopes of raising $20,000 for relief efforts. Like their work with the Rwandan mudslides, Raw Material has established a three-phase recovery effort, concentrating first on meeting immediate needs before shifting towards recovery efforts and building overall resiliency. Their work will concentrate on six of the 13 total municipalities in Timor-Leste.
Veterans Care Association: Looking to raise $50,000 AUD, funds raised by the Veterans Care Association will go toward purchasing “food, basic supplies and temporary shelter to those affected by the devastating floods and landslides in Timor-Leste.”
Oxfam Australia: Non-profit Oxfam estimates over 100,000 people will be affected by the floods in Dili alone. With their International Crisis Fund, Oxfam is teaming up with UNICEF to provide aid to folks in Timor-Leste with disabilities, seniors, and pregnant people. This includes providing accessible toilets for those currently housed in camps as well as dignity kits for women and young girls.
Peace Winds Japan: Working with Timor-Leste importing partner Cafe Brisa Serena, Royal Coffee suggests donating to PWJ, an NGO “dedicated to the support of people in distress, and threatened by conflict, poverty, or other turmoil” who has a long history of working in Timor-Leste.
We have reached out to coffee companies working in Timor-Leste to see if they have any relief efforts they would like highlighted, and we'll be updating this list as more information becomes available.
This story is developing…