“ Still lacking children, Tomorrow we go again."

East Timor 2015

photography and cinema

 

It is necessary to arrive.

 

The Timorese vaccination teams are on the terrain, going from village to village, from community to community, in search of all children.We follow a health professionals team in East Timor during the national vaccination campaign, on a mountain region where the dispersion of communities and difficult to reach them are are a constant barrier.

 

Villages and communities are scattered everywhere, dotting the nearby slopes of the highest point in the country, Ramelau Mount. They are often a scant group of houses built in a traditional way, and with local materials, merging into the mountainous stunning natural landscape. Altitude is about 2000 meters in many of these places, and we can have multiple seasons on the same day. There is cold, fog and humidity. Rain and wind as well. And sun…

 

Doctors, nurses and Carmelite sisters who run the teams, are divided into all-terrain cars that will drop them as close as possible of final destination. Often making long hours of walking path by mountain trails in remote places where there is no electricity, mobile network and where nothing seems to come.

 

After the days of vaccination campaign in communities have been fulfilled, it is time to do math, look at the numbers.

 

There were places where children have not been immunized, or because they were not in the locations, or because they missed the call.

 

Inácia, is a nun responsible for coordinating the campaign in this region. She is sitting. After coming from the field, she looks in the evening to the pile of paper that populate her work desk. Has still dressed the orange team sweater over her white garment. Smiles with her natural friendliness while looking at the numbers.

 

“Still lacking children. Tomorrow we go again”

 

 text by Luisa Neves Soares