Timor-Leste is Australia’s closest neighbour and is considered one of the poorest countries in South East Asia. Fatuquero is a small village nestled in the hills of the Ermera District, an hour’s drive from the capital Dili, and Cornish College has a direct relationship with the Fatuquero School.
Staff from Cornish College began visiting the Fatuquero School in 2016 and in 2019, the relationship further developed with twelve VCE students also visiting. Since then, this amazing experience has cemented Timor-Leste into the Cornish community’s desire to make a difference. The Fatuquero School is for lower secondary students in the morning and primary students in the afternoon, with a total school population of about 500 students.
Cornish College currently raises funds to support volunteer teachers, provide student scholarships, provide resources to enhance the teaching of English, and aims to provide Cornish students opportunities to visit Timor-Leste.
The relationship between our two schools is one of support and exchange, perhaps best described by the acronym IMPACCT – Immersion, Mission, Partnership, Action, Challenge, Culture and Teaching.
Everything about the relationship has an impact on the lives of those involved, both at Cornish and the Fatuquero School.
The Timor-Leste IMPACCT experience
- Immersion into life in Timor-Leste
- A chance to be part of the Mission that Cornish has to make a difference
- To help develop the Partnership with the Fatuquero School
- To take some positive Action in a country that requires assistance
- To be Challenged by the experience
- To experience the unique Timorese Culture
- To be involved in the English Teaching program at Fatuquero
Cornish’s support for the Fatuquero School has included the refurbishment of the school library and funding for a dedicated volunteer at the school to become a qualified teacher. Support from the Cornish community continues to make this possible, with fundraising contributing to important classroom activities and student visits.
Quotes from students who have participated in the experience
“Although I have always valued human connection and generosity, this trip gave me a context as to why I hold these values. It also gave me a sense of responsibility towards using these amazing privileges that I was born into, to do everything in my power to make a difference in their lives. But what I did not expect is the difference that they could make in mine. I encourage anyone and everyone to apply for this trip because, as cliched as it sounds, it has changed my life more than I could have ever imagined.”
Polly, Year 12
“This trip for me was one of those defining moments that you will look back on in 20 years and attribute to why you are the way that you are. It was a lot about helping others and recognising our privilege and doing something with it, but also it was a big growth trip for me. We met so many inspiring people – so many people who have dedicated their lives to making something better, helping others. These experiences stay with you and make you who you are, and inspire you to do better and be better.”
Tierney, Year 11
“This trip has made me realise what a blessing our existence is…I don’t think we appreciate how truly incredible it is being able to speak English so easily. So many of the students told me that learning English was the only way to achieve their dreams of receiving further education in order to have a job in the future. This is such a small example of what I take for granted every day. We all need to have a look at what we have and how lucky we are, simply because we were fortunate to be born in a position where we can experience the ease of life that we do.”
Emily, Year 11
Register your interest
Register your interest in supporting the Cornish College Timor-Leste IMPACCT program:
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Cornish College is hoping to raise $5,000 for our Timor-Leste IMPACCT campaign to fund our annual commitments and we would really appreciate your support.
NB: Donations are not tax deductible