The Bega Valley Advocates for Timor-Leste (BVATL) is a friendship group linked to the sub-district of Barique-Natarbora on the south coast of Timor-Leste (East Timor) . The group is made up of volunteers whose aim is to foster and promote friendship between the people of the Bega Valley and Barique-Natarbora. Volunteers fund their own trips to East Timor to support education, women’s projects, health and music.


Join our email list to receive information on our activities, as well as information on other issues and projects happening in East Timor. To join our email list, send an email to

Attend meetings on Saturdays at 9 am at Bega Uniting Church in March, May, July, September & November. 

Attend the flag raising ceremony held in Bega in May to celebrate East Timor’s Independence Day.

Support fund raisers such as Choirs for Timor held in Bega.

You can donate directly to BVATL and donations are tax deductible: 

SJASC Timor-Leste Account:
Bendigo Bank BSB 633 000    
Account Number 178 378 006

Please send an email if a direct deposit is made so that a receipt can be issued.

For more information go to:

Contact us at:

PO Box 7139 Tathra NSW 2550

Find us on Facebook  


BVATL was formed in 2004 and since 2020 has become part of SJASC. The aim is to assist the people of our small neighbouring country to whom we owe a debt of honour for helping our soldiers during World War II. The goals are to advocate for the people of East Timor, form friendships and provide financial, intellectual and practical support in consultation with the local community.

In September 2004, a Friendship Agreement was signed by Bega Valley Shire Council and the Barique-Natarbora Sub-District.


Building on the success of local initiatives and supporting the implementation of the national curriculum  is the focus for education. Support is also given to young people to study permaculture and a sewing teacher is employed to give skills to women and young people.

Scholarships are also provided for students to attend the Baucau Institute to study for a Bachelor of Education. 

Belun Malu Choirs Project

Music is the focus for this friendship project which aims to bring a choir from Timor-Leste to Australia.

In 2019 an Australian choir travelled to East Timor to share music through concerts and workshops in Dili, Maliana and Natarbora. 

East Timor is located about 600 km north-west of Darwin.