Willoughby Friends of Ossu is an Australian community group formed to foster friendship, support and cross-cultural exchange at a grassroots level with the people of Ossu, Timor-Leste. The Friends aim to help Ossu grow and prosper in every way, by providing non-political support and exchange. Willoughby Friends of Ossu is part of the Timor-Leste Friendship Association. The projects that the Friends of Ossu help increase capacity and make a difference to the lives of the people of Ossu.
Uma Maun Alin (Friendship House)
In 2006, we established friendship links with Ossu after Friends of Ossu’s, Rosemary Bekker visited Ossu with Abel Guterres – the Ambassador of Timor-Leste. Then we negotiated with the District Administrator of Viqueque for a house to be restored and made available to be used as a community centre for programs initiated by local people.
Take a look at the video to see how we were established.
A Reciprocal Relationship
This mutual friendship provides an important role in the democratic future of the country. It creates reciprocal opportunities for the people of Ossu and for the residents of Willoughby, Sydney, Australia.
Willoughby Friends of Ossu is an incorporated association. The Friendship Agreement (Memorandum of Understanding) was formally endorsed by the District Administrator of Viqueque, Timor-Leste and representatives of the Friends in June 2008, at the first Friendship Conference in Dili.
The friendship relationship is a long-term commitment based on a direct community to community philosophy. It has particular focus on respect, local decision-making and mutual co-operation. Willoughby Friends of Ossu is represented on the Global Friendship Committee of Willoughby City Council underlining the humanitarian focus of the Friends and its importance to both the local Council and the residents.