Friends of Ossu
Willoughby, Sydney, Australia
Is a community group formed to foster friendship, support and cross cultural exchange at a grass roots level with the people of
We aim to support the people of Ossu in their reconstruction process through long term friendship between Ossu and representatives of Willoughby Friends of Ossu, where both parties are able to learn, change and develop.
Willoughby Friends of Ossu (WFOO) is part of the Australia wide network of friendship associations with Timor-Leste. This mutual friendship provides an important role in the democratic future of the country, creating opportunities for the people of Ossu and the residents of Willoughby, Sydney, Australia.
WFOO is an incorporated association and is represented on the Global Friendship Committee of Willoughby City Council.
The Friendship Agreement (Memorandum of Understanding) was formally endorsed by the District Administrator of Viqueque, Timor-Leste and representatives of the Willoughby City Council in June 2008, at the first Friendship Conference in Dili.
The friendship relationship is a long term commitment based on a direct community to community philosophy. It has particular focus on respect, local decision-making and mutual co-operation.
Ossu, a sub-district of Viqueque, is located high in the lush mountainous region of central Timor-Leste; about 2 hours drive south of Bacau and 6 hours drive from Dili over difficult roads. The hillsides are steeply mountainous and covered in tropical rainforests with wild foods, small gardens and vegetable crops.
Ossu consists of 9 sub-villages or “sucos”, each with a village chief, - chef de suco. The sucos surround the main village of Ossu, which has schools and a produce market. The people are living in basic, traditional housing made from bamboo with thatched roofs, grazing goats and a few chickens and pigs.
Please click and watch the Willoughby Friends of Ossu video to see more about the people of Timor Leste.