Photo: Richard Wainwright. Martina is a great example of a story of survival that inspires all women who are going through difficulties in Timor-Leste.

Protect and empower women facing domestic violence

You can help provide shelter and life-changing support to women and children vulnerable to violence at home.

Donate now

When fear starts at home, safety can start with you.

Over the last past few months, another shocking outcome of the COVID-19 pandemic has been happening. Domestic violence rates have escalated globally as lockdowns and restrictions on movement have further exposed many women and children already vulnerable to violence and abuse at home.

Your generosity today can help reach women and children who are at risk of violence in countries like Timor-Leste and around the world.


Your support is the light in the darkness

Photo: Richard Wainwright.

Martina is an inspiring woman. She is strong, bold and a deeply caring mother. And she is a survivor of domestic violence.

Like many women in Timor-Leste, Martina experienced violence at home.

For a decade, she lived in fear of her abusive husband. Unable to provide for her eight children by herself, she stayed. Martina accepted the fear and pain to make sure her children had a roof over their heads.

Martina wanted to escape, but where do you run when there’s nowhere to go?

Martina had the strength to walk away from everything that was familiar – her home, her village – and flee with her eight children. Her love for her family encouraged her to make the difficult decision to come to the Uma PAS women’s shelter to ask for help.

At the shelter, supported by generous people like you through the Protection Program in Timor-Leste, Martina found the care, protection and relief she needed to begin to rebuild her life.

The Protection Program

Photo: Richard Wainwright. 'Uma PAS' shelter in Timor-Leste.
  • Shelters provide food, accommodation, counselling, legal assistance and referrals to other services, including health and education, for women and children survivor of violence
  • Training and support enable vulnerable women to develop livelihoods skills that help them supporter themselves and their children as they reintegrate into communities, building their independence and resilience.
  • Strong education components engage men and boys in communities to increase their understanding of the role that men can play in reducing family violence.

The program impacts entire communities, current and future generations!

With your support, women and children vulnerable to domestic violence can have access to safe shelters, education and prevention work that help break the cycle of violence.

A family with a future

Photo: Richard Wainwright: Martina’s eldest daughter is planning to enrol in a course that will help her to open her own small business.

Through the Protection Program in Timor-Leste, supported by generous people like you, Martina was able to leave that pain behind and build a new life for herself and her family.

Today, Martina is an inspiration to her children and her community.

With the training she received, it didn’t take long for her to earn enough income to support her family and – most importantly for her – provide her children with an education.

Martina’s younger children are all in school. Her older children have good jobs and her eldest son is studying civil engineering at university.

Please make a generous donation and help expand the capacity of shelters and enable more women like Martina to find protection and support to build new lives of safety and independence.

"In the poor and outcast, we see Christ’s face; by loving and helping the poor, we love and serve Christ."

Pope Francis