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Bobonaro Boxing club

Bobonaro Boxing club created a clear image of the current challenges all sports face in Timor-Leste, the lack of infrastructure and equipment for participants are minimal. It was quite humbling to see the barriers to participation they overcome to play sport. Upon visiting Bobonaro Boxing club a meeting set up through relationships developed within the community, the team and I weren’t excepting what were going to see.

A clear lack of government services and a show of poverty, from talking to trainers and participants from Bobonaro Boxing club about the specific challenges they faced. Only two pairs of gloves were used since 2007 and one gum shield shared between 20 is the norm in boxing competitions. Their training facility boasted broken bags and uneven surfaces. We were fortunate to have spare equipment to donate the club leaving boxing bags, skipping ropes, hand wraps, pads and other necessary equipment to help them participate in combat sports. 


From gathering donations from Australia we were able to provide Dili e Benfica an Olympic sized boxing ring and other variations of sporting goods to them to participate in Muay Thai and Boxing. Both clubs Bobonaro Boxing and Dili e Benfica show the exact challenges Timor faces. The commitment, enthusiasm and passion for combat sports is apparent it just needs to be fostered and nurtured for it to grow.

Bobonaro Boxing club provided the current framework of how boxing clubs stand.  Sports that had clubs, basic infrastructure and were highly participated in as well as being popular were:

  • Football

  • Boxing

  • Taekwondo

  • Cycling

  • Basketball and 

  • Running


We worked very closely with boxing clubs around Dili and it’s Sub Districts; there are currently fifty boxing clubs in Timor Leste and they are broken into five Districts

  1. Bobonaro district of Fatu hada

  2. Los Polas

  3. Viqueque

  4. Ermera

  5. Aileu


Boxing Clubs in Dili

  1. Benfica Boxing

  2. Tomas Americo Boxing

  3. Bobonaro Boxing

  4. Oreientele Boxing

  5. Lorico Boxing

  6. Cormera Boxing

  7. Dili Boxing

  8. Casa Grande Boxing

  9. Mascarihas Boxing

  10. Rumbia Boxing

  11. Bairopite Boxing

  12. Uniao Boxing

  13. Toko Barv Boxing


Average age of participants: 12-17 years old

Minimum age to be able to compete: 16 years old

Average member count for each club: 15-30 participants 


This sporting landscape will be the major targets to increase participation rates in Muay Thai and MMA as working with boxing camps and their trainers act as a benefit to cross training skills and different techniques. This design portrays population groups that are in our demographic to take up the sport, and provides the opportunity to expand.  Working in relationships with the trainers and clubs allows for transparent communication of all goals trying to be reached in different sports.

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