During the months of May and June the ACTION Support Centre is hosting two postgraduate students from the University of Edinburgh, who are joining their team for this period. Anisa Omar and Suzanne Tossings, both studying the MSc Africa and International Development, are interning at ACTION to gain insight into the workings of a peacebuilding organization, and to do research for their final dissertations, which will also contribute to the work of ACTION.
Suzanne will be researching the conflict dynamics and state-citizen relationship in Alexandra. Her main focus will be on how the Local Peace Committee in Alex can collaborate with different stakeholders involved in Alexandra, in order to improve the situation and make the work that is being done more effective. She has been talking to different people from the Local Peace Committee in Alex and will continue to meet different people and attend public meetings in the township.
Anisa will be conducting research on the Somali diaspora in South Africa. Anisa’s research will investigate how a culture of solidarity contributes to a perception of safety and human security. In particular, the research will focus on the forms of protection and income generation activities devised by Somali women in exile in South Africa, as part of ACTION’s commitment to the Bridging the Gaps and forging Partnerships program. Anisa hopes that the successful completion of this work will further assist the organization in supporting Somali women, and strengthening their partnership with the South African Somali Women’s Network (SASOWNET).
Besides their research, both Anisa and Suzanne have been attending various events organized by ACTION, such as the Applied Conflict Transformation course and the various events organized in Africa Week.