Seven years of friendship with Timor-Leste

Since 2000, Moreland City Council, with the City of Hume, has had a friendship city relationship with Aileu in Timor-Leste (East Timor).

Aileu is a region about 50 kilometres south of Dili.

At the Maurice Blackburn Oration delivered by East Timorese leader Xanana Gusmão in May 2000, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed by Xanana Gusmão with the Local Governments of Hume and Moreland.

The relationship between the cities has gone from strength to strength.

Both Councils and their communities have supported a number of projects in Aileu District, including scholarships for secondary and tertiary students, the employment of an English language teacher, the provision of educational materials and sporting equipment for schools in Aileu, and the installation of solar lighting systems in several public buildings.

On the five year anniversary of the friendship agreement in May 2005, the District Administrator of Aileu, Sr Martinho Matos, signed a new five -year Friendship Agreement between the District of Aileu and Moreland and Hume City Councils during a visit to Melbourne.

This reaffirmed the cities’ commitment to the principles and values on which the original friendship agreement was based.

The friendship relationship between Moreland, Hume and Aileu is one of a number of relationships between Local Governments and East Timor communities.

Project partners include Coffex Coffee, Australian Volunteers International, the Alola Foundation Friendship School Project, the Alternative Technology Association and the volunteer members of the Friends of Aileu Community Committee, who have all raised funds to assist with the rebuilding of Aileu.