SETL is a not-for-profit incorporated association, established in 2012 and incorporated in March 2014.
It has a Management Committee and an Advisory Committee with financial, legal and business expertise.
ABN 33 754 047 620
It delivers low interest rate housing loans to young people in Timor Leste.
- A not-for-profit association providing housing loans.
- Interest rates are low.
- SETL is flexible, able to negotiate temporary changes in the circumstances of borrowers.
- Type of house is up to the borrower.
- Loan is not a gift – loans have to be repaid with an interest rate that helps maintains the fund against inflation.
- SETL is not a charity – no tax deductions for donors.
- Other small loan schemes inTimor Leste do not provide this amount (up to $ US25000), nor for housing.
SETL loan scheme began in response to a need on the ground in East Timor. Timorese culture is communal but there is no possibility of young ones with jobs getting their own place. Housing is generally crowded. Banks lend only to government projects and to the few public servants with a permanent contract at very high interest rates. Contract work is the norm so young ones never qualify for a housing loan like young people in Australia can.
How is the next generation of leaders to function in this kind of housing situation? They have been busy educating themselves in a country where the majority cannot read, where the infra-structure was completely destroyed in 1999 and where the local pool of skilled people was virtually non-existent.
Effective leadership requires some personal living space and room for reflection, just as we would consider essential in Australia.
Future of SETL
- First house completed 2015, borrowers repaying.
- Flexibility with 1st loan: over Christmas and after a sudden family death, repayments halted for 2 months to cover expenses. This flexibility will continue.
- Pilot Program due for completion mid-2016 during meetings with first borrowers in Dili.
- Partner to be sought in Timor Leste to do financial assessment and education of new borrowers.
- When repayments rebuild enough, loans will become available to more borrowers in Timor Leste.
- Long term aim: to have the scheme administered in East Timor with funding from Australia.
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