Do you ever feel that itch to use your skills to help others? It’s such a great feeling to volunteer your time and your experience to people who desperately need it! Our partner, Palms Australia provides a link between volunteers and struggling communities that are crying out for people just like you!

Palms Australia

These guys have been around since 1956 so they know what they’re doing! Their aim is to provide practical help and training for people on the edge of society; to create a skill base that will benefit various communities for generations to come. Instead of sending money, Palms Australia sends professional people to train, inspire and help people land on their feet, find their purpose in life and use these new skills to build a sustainably, successful community.

So who can volunteer? Teachers are always welcome, as well as Financial Advisors, Administrators, Doctors, Nurses, Plumbers/Builders and Pastoral Care Workers – just to name a few. The length of placements is usually 2 years so you can really immerse yourself in the culture and community in which you work. Volunteers are fully trained before they hit the ground so they understand the culture they’ll find themselves in as well as the expectations of Palms Australia.

East Timor Project

The latest Palms Australia project is one close to home – literally! East Timor is one of our closest neighbours and one that is still recovering from a tumultuous past. Palms is seeking volunteers in a range of positions to help East Timorese people get back on their feet, creating a stronger, healthier, more viable country. Specifically, they’re looking to fill the following positions:

  • Secondary Teacher, 2 year placement to mentor Timorese High School teachers in Timor Leste for Fundação Sagrado Coração de Jesus Maliana (FSCJ); the Sacred Heart of Jesus Educational Foundation.This person will work with 12 high schools –  sharing classes with teachers and providing advice and direction. They will also help teachers develop their English and communication skills.
  • 2 or more Secondary Teachers (English and Science) across 5 schools in Kiribati. These volunteers will support teachers, provide professional development and create systems to increase efficiency.
  • English teacher for the Hospitality college Instituto Filhas de Maria Auxiliadora (IFMA) in Baucau in a 2 year placement. Tourism is an untapped resource in East Timor and is in its development stage. This volunteer would be teaching Hospitality students English skills, a vital aspect of work in any field.

How To Volunteer

Feeling inspired? Head over to Palms Australia here and fill in the application form. Take time to read through the various vacancies available, the FAQs and more about the organisation! There’s also heaps of info about training packages, support and stories from other volunteers.

Support East Timor Farmers

If you’re not keen to volunteer, that’s cool! You can support East Timorese farmers by purchasing their products! You can buy our Sacred Grounds East Timor Coffee from the affiliated Fairtrade Trade Coffee Company website and all proceeds go directly to finding Palms Australia projects.

There’s also a section where you can donate cold hard cash, which always helps!


Images via Palms Australia

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Emma Watson

From creating her own ‘Ozzie Mozzie Editorial’ newspaper when she was 10 to writing for ‘The Sydney Morning Herald’, Emma has always loved to write. She spends her time looking after her two kids and tapping away at the keyboard blogging at, writing for Howards Storage World and of course, for Sacred Grounds Organic. Her love of a good small cappuccino (with one sugar!) and social justice makes this a match made in heaven. Emma loves a good book, travelling and hanging at the beach with her little crew.

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