In Timor-Leste, we work to ensure every child has access to nutrition, health and proper sanitation.
Child mortality and limited childhood development are some of Timor-Leste’s major challenges. One in 24 children will not live to see their fifth birthday. Malnutrition, poor sanitation and hygiene, and limited maternal health facilities hinder children’s growth.
Poor development in childhood sets children up for life: sapping potential and perpetuating poverty.
About 70 per cent of Timor-Leste’s population lives in rural areas, and rural health care facilities are under-resourced: the staff lack training in maternal health and newborn care, and facilities often lack access to running water, reliable electricity, medicines and supplies.
Poor hygiene and a lack of awareness contribute to childhood illness and under-nutrition at home. Nearly 42 percent of Timor-Leste’s population lives below the poverty line with rural areas being disproportionately poor. Most rural families are subsistence farmers, and rely on what they can produce for food and nutrition in oft-challenging environment.
Timor-Leste has one of the world’s highest rates of stunting: one of every two children under five are stunted.
Why we need to make a change:
• One in two children in Timor-Leste under five years of age are stunted — one of the highest rates of stunting in the world.
• One in 24 children in Timor-Leste will not live to see their fifth birthday.
• 38 per cent of children under five years of age are underweight.
• Half the women in Timor-Leste do not give birth in a health facility.
• 42 per cent of deaths in women aged between 15 and 49 years are due to complications from pregnancy and childbirth.
• 50 per cent of rural health posts in Timor-Leste have no access to water.