Development Studies Seminar

12 Mar 2019 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
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2nd Floor Geography Building
Geography, 2.03
In the aftermath of 25 years of brutal Indonesian occupation, NGO numbers in Timor Leste expanded from just 34 in 2000 to over 231 by 2002. With US Peace Troops pulling-out in 2002 however, NGO activity steadily declined and international donor focus shifted from livelihoods, women’s rights, and assisting the vulnerable, to building the capacity of the State. In keeping to its stated aims of supporting the marginalised, Caritas Aotearoa NZ has maintained active partnership with Dili-based women’s empowerment NGO HAFOTI since 2002, facilitating women across seven districts achieve greater wellbeing, agency and self-determination. This presentation follows the journey of HAFOTI and explores Caritas’ current, five-year MFAT-funded partnership programme – now into its third year. Phil Brass received a MIntDev at Massey University in 2017. After working more than twenty years in the corporate sector in Dunedin and Nelson, Phil moved to Wellington to complete a BA in Development Studies and Honours in Religious studies at Victoria University of Wellington. In 2017, after completion of his Master’s degree, he began working as International Programmes Coordinator for Caritas Aotearoa NZ and is now responsible for Caritas development partnerships in Cambodia, Fiji, Timor Leste and Central America. A keen cyclist and swimmer, Phil can also sometimes be observed jamming along with local muso’s wherever he is working – hoping music may in some-way mask his inability to pick up the local language.

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