Amalia de Jesus Alves joined Menzies in Timor-Leste in October 2020, beginning work as a veterinary technician supporting national field sampling protocols for antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and antimicrobial use (AMU) surveillance programs.

Amalia works with animal health service staff and farmers, and engages with veterinary technicians to promote sample submission, assist with data entry and analysis, and help with interviews and engagement sessions to understand antimicrobials used in animals.

Prior to joining Menzies, Amalia graduated with a Diploma in Animal Health from the Universidade Nacional Timor Lorosa’e (UNTL), Timor-Leste and embraced the opportunity to work at Menzies where her supervisors are able to guide her in the practical application of her university studies.

“Everyone at Menzies is very supportive and my supervisors are always willing to help me learn how animal health sciences work in practice, and in a way which directly builds on my previous studies on Animal Health.”  

“Menzies has given me this opportunity to learn and I hope to be able to use this experience towards the development of animal health sciences or veterinary services in Timor-Leste in the future,” Amalia said.

Since joining Menzies, Amalia has mentored National Directorate of Veterinary (NDV) staff, verified import records for 2019 and 2020, and recorded antibiotic imports for 2021. Overall, the aim of her work is to know how much antibiotics are used by veterinary technicians in the field compared to the distribution records.

In continuing her work with Menzies, Amalia is keen to learn more about AMR in animals and how the AMR of animals affects human health.

‘’I love to treat those who can’t speak for themselves and caring for animals is not what I do, it is who I am,’’ Amalia said.

“As a girl who is a veterinary technician, I would like to encourage all my friends especially girls to always learn and learn more as you can no matter how hard and don’t worry with what people are saying. Sometimes we feel insecure, and like it is impossible to do it. But remember one thing - only the strongest girls or women become veterinary technicians.”

Amalia’s next goal is to continue her study to be a veterinarian in the future.