Category Archives: KD Volunteers

My Volunteering Time at Klibur Domin

From David 

 When I left Klibur Domin in November 2016 a lot of what was going through my mind concerned “what hadn’t been done”. There were some specific tasks on the agenda from day one. Tasks identified by others, tasks that could lead to giving real assistance to the Director.

Activities at Klibur Domin with the Sisters from the local school.

Snr Joaquim Soares, Director of KD, was the perfect host. Briefing me the first day he took me around the campus, an orientation walk and an introduction to a few of those on staff. Then into his office for the specifics about how best to use my time to help him. Over the next two days I met most of the staff and Iread lots of notes written by previous volunteers.

My role very much depended on access to information supplied by admin and finance staff. I was very grateful for their input. Early on I came to value the fact that their knowledge of English was vital to success of the job at hand. Key people around the KD site were working on a variety of projects within the compound and it was Joaquim’s desire that some of these projects could do with a helping hand. A new bore and pump needed to be commissioned, a massive 190 metre drain was being constructed along the front to carry the deluge in the monsoons and two new buildings were underway. Add to that a new front fence, entrance and cattle grid and I could see I was going to be spending as much time outside of the office as inside. My role was simply estimating the projects, drawing a few plans and getting the material on site. By the end of my stay I was on first name terms with the guys at the hardware and steel stores.

The new water bore delivered more clean water than ever before much to the delight of all the residents. After a  few weeks, a few new pipes and plumbing bits and it was working perfectly. The drain was finished and KD tradies started on the new Clinic. A local contractor was hired to do the new front fence and work began. Security for the residents was paramount, patients, young people and some residents are vulnerable, their safety is vital.

The compound sometimes looked like a farmyard, cattle grazing, pigs digging up the ground and goats eating anything and everything. ”We need a cattle grid!” After much designing and drawing we were ready to contract out the job. As the construction of the grid drew to a close it was time to get all the animals out before the final stage went ahead, ie “the grid”. Picture 15 people trying to herd sundry animals, never been herded before, through a gate. Somehow grid installed, no more animals.

There were other jobs in the pipeline but my time was up.  Finance reporting was now occurring weekly and Richard from Ballarat arrived to take on both the new project and enhance the role in finance and admin. Not everything on the list got done, but everything that was done allowed Joaquim to get on with his job.

I met some fabulous people, had the experience of working in what they call a “post conflict” country and from my cosy little home in Ballarat, I can appreciate how a little help can make a difference.

Telling My Story – A Life in Nursing

Ondria Cheeseman has always wanted to write a book since her early days.

It was her volunteering experience at Klibur Domin in 2014 that pushed her along her bucket list giving her the much needed motivation to write and realize her dream.

At the age of three, Ondria needed to be hospitalized for heart surgery. She knew then that her calling was to nursing. That was in 1966 and fifty years on Ondria is still nursing.

She trained at the Alfred Hospital in Melbourne. Upon her graduation she worked in Northern Territory, Western Australia, Papua New Guinea in the Duke of York Islands and Bougainville.

Ondria met her husband, Leicester, in Papua New Guinea and went to live in his homeland New Zealand, where they raised their three children.

Returning to Australia they settled in Ballarat, Victoria. Ondria worked in a variety of nursing positions and developed a serious interest in palliative care. This has been her main area of nursing in recent years. Continue reading Telling My Story – A Life in Nursing

Shared Love in East Timor

 

Fr Ted Burns is a retired priest of the Melbourne Archdiocese.  He has had a long association with Ryder-Cheshire and was instrumental many years ago in recruiting our current RCA President, Peter Newton AO.  Fr Burns recently visited Klibur Domin in company with Peter. He is the author of this article which is appearing in the Catholic magazine Annals Australasia and the text is reproduced here with kind permission of
Fr Burns and the publisher.

 

 SHARED LOVE IN EAST TIMOR

 RYDER-CHESHIRE IN ACTION ON AUSTRALIA’S DOORSTEP 

By Fr. Ted Burns PE

It’s not every day that a priest (especially one in his late 70s) gets such a sweet smile from a young lady. It happened to me recently at a small village in Ermera province, in the rugged mountains of Timor-Leste, better-known as East Timor.

The lady concerned was about 10 months old.  As she beamed at me from her mother’s arms, I realized, as her tiny face lit up, that she had virtually no upper lip. My immediate reaction was resolving to find help for her. Such cases are not unusual.

On this visit to East Timor, I had joined the mobile unit of a Community Based Rehabilitation team from Klibur Domin (KD) a Ryder-Cheshire (RCA) initiative sponsored by Australians and New Zealanders, and operated by about 40 local Timorese from their base at Tibar, 17 km west of Dili.

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Fr Burns with mothers and young patients

Klibur Domin is Timorese for Shared Love, and the Mobile Rehab team is just one arm of this wonderfully effective outfit. There is also a Mobile TB team. It too travels to remote villages, diagnosing and treating sufferers. Timor has one of the highest rates of TB in the world, and literally hundreds have been treated, thanks to the Clinic at  KD. Continue reading Shared Love in East Timor

Stuart and Jeanette

Recently we had the privilege of spending two weeks as volunteers   at Klibur Domin.  We were warmly welcomed into this eclectic community and were impressed by the wide range of programs operating out of KD.

We were happy to fit in where needed while we were there.

daw 1Stuart joined Barry (volunteer) in general maintenance around the place and in continuing to work on the kitchen garden established by Barry.  They also spent time sorting and repairing equipment stored in a container on the compound. We had taken Daw 4some medical supplies over with us and Stuart, a nurse, spent time with the clinic nurse going through the supplies and discussing how they could be used.  Stuart also had the opportunity to spend a day Daw 7with the immunisation team which was a highlight for him professionally.

Continue reading Stuart and Jeanette

Fran

Fran Head

Anyone who can possibly make the effort to spend time in Timor Leste should jump at the opportunity. I enjoyed every day of my two months’ stay at Klibur Domin. As I have been retired for a few years I was worried that the long day from 8 am until 5 pm in the heat might prove too much for me. It turned out to be like a holiday on a tropical island away from the Ballarat winter. The warm weather and cool nights suited me though if I had to work in the sun it would have been a different story. Continue reading Fran