From 27th September to 1st October 2018, Drs Jennifer Bond and Joanne Millar with the help of two female translators conducted in-depth interviews with 6 women involved in the tree project and 8 women not in the project. We also interviewed 4 village heads and 5 people involved in community groups. The aim was to understand more about their everyday tasks and priorities, their perspectives on the tree project, involvement in other income generating or community groups and future aspirations. The findings will assist us to track project impacts over time, develop case studies (what works, does not work), add value to existing initiatives or start new activities.
Women in the project told us that the income contributes to household expenditure and is an investment for their children’s future. Most of the non-project women were interested in joining except a couple of households that were too busy with a shop or trade. Several women were involved in savings schemes, a few made ‘tais’ handicrafts in Batara and women in Soibada had a knitting group supported by Friends of Soibada in Australia. Many of the production groups had ceased (eg cassava flour, pigs, maize, peanuts) due to loss of donor support but a vegetable group was still selling their product in Dili. Future aspirations centred around making sure their children were able to finish school and perhaps go to University. Expanding a shop and working hard to sell coffee and palm wine were other plans.
Women from Soibada
Jo Millar and Isa interviewing lady from Funar
Senora Madelina from Soibada knitting a babies headband and bags