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coffee Timor-Leste floods

Urgent appeal for coffee farmers launched following Timor-Leste floods

More than 14,000 people have been left homeless, without food or shelter, and are extremely vulnerable following devastating floods and landslides that started on 4 April 2021 in Timor-Leste.

The Timor-Leste government announced their relief package will focus on the city of Dili only, due to budget and information-gathering constraints.

In response, Raw Material Coffee has launched a plan to reach the farming communities in need across the country. Raw Material is gathering damage reports from villages, securing the funding required, and responding to the disaster in three stages:

  1. Meet immediate needs
  2. Support recovery
  3. Build long-term resilience

These floods struck during the worst of Timor-Leste’s COVID-19 outbreak and lock-down. Movement was already extremely restricted outside the capital of Dili, and now with roads destroyed and power intermittent, coffee-producing teams in the remote regions have become the arms and legs of those that are trying to help.

Raw Material is responding rapidly, has the trust and support of local authorities and organisations, and has experience responding to landslides and flooding in coffee-growing regions of other countries.

Raw Material’s focus is on meeting the needs of families in the coffee-growing areas of Timor-Leste. Damage reports village by village have been gathered, across six of the 13 municipalities of the country:

  • Ermera Municipality
  • Manatuto Municipality
  • Aileu Municipality
  • Ainaro Municipality
  • Bobonaro Municipality
  • Liquica Municipality

Each of these municipalities is divided into about four to six subdistricts, with up to 18 villages in each.

Work is currently happening across coffee processing centres, village chiefs, local police forces, and district administrators to gather data on damages and urgent needs as quickly as possible.

Door-to-door interviews are also being conducted through a network of coffee farmers. Power and cell phone reception is often unavailable, and many roads are destroyed, so it will take time to collect a full picture of the damage in the more remote coffee-growing regions of Timor-Leste.

Investments will be prioritised based on the level of funding Raw Material can achieve, as well as the community-identified needs. All planning, management, and work is being carried out with village chiefs and local community members at all stages.

Soon, it will be possible to track the developments funded through a Google Sheet, and on Instagram.

For more information, visit www.donorbox.org/timor-leste-floods-urgent-appeal

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