Abrão De Jesus proudly works for one of the major newspapers in Timor-Leste, the Timor Post, which prints the daily news and runs a website – all in the native Timorese language of Tetum. It took Abrão many years of hard work and study to achieve his post, and he credits the opportunities provided to him as a Carmelite student for his current social and financial wellbeing.

Teresinha Graduation

Born in the mountains in Bessilau village, Aileu Municipality, Azina grew up one of 7 children to subsistence farmers. The family grows crops such as corn, beans, pumpkins, tomatoes, and chilli. Her parents never went to school, so they can’t read or write, but that didn’t stop Azina’s desire to become more than the sum of her surroundings. Her older brother had become a Carmelite, and she too wanted to study at university. 

After receiving her Community Scholarship, she moved to Dili to commence her university studies, with the goal of returning home to support her community through nursing.

As part of her degree, she travelled to villages to collect data on patients suffering from diarrhea. She chose to look at this affliction in more detail because it’s such a common problem in Timor that impacts many children’s and families’ day-to-day health and wellbeing.

After receiving her Bachelor of Nursing from the Institute for Health Sciences (ICS – Institutu Ciencia do Saude), Azina’s dream of becoming a professional nurse and working at a hospital was realised. However, as the global pandemic hit Timor-Leste hard, her first experience in the hospital’s emergency ward was filled with challenges far beyond normal everyday life.