The southwestern islands between Tanimbar and Timor are some of the remotest and least accessible in all Indonesia. Nila is a small volcanic island just east of Damer. In 1978, the government resettled the entire population to Seram and declared the island uninhabited. But many of the islanders returned to Nila in 1999 to escape the troubles in Seram.
During our visit last year we recognised the need for a medical check-up for the islanders. There has been no health post or doctor on the island since 1978. Dr Ruth Indira who joined Vega in Jakarta for this year’s journey held a mobile clinic to provide free medical treatment on Sunday after the church service. She also provided training for the island health worker and midwife.