On the 8th of December alum, Dr. Puleng Segalo hosted a community dialogue with the community women from Etwatwa township in Daveyton. The dialogue consisted of women who were collaborators in her research project which focused on Black women’s experiences of growing up during Apartheid South Africa. Women from the broader Daveyton community were also invited to engage in the dialogue. The women who were part of the project got the opportunity to speak about our research journey and their individual narratives. They further talked about the importance of history in assisting us to make meaning of today. They created a nurturing space which allowed for the sharing and talking about the current situation /challenges in the country and ways in which people can contribute in working towards a just society. One of the issues which were highlighted was the need to confront the past as this will assist in healing the persistent wounds that people continue to carry in them. They also tackled the issue of universities needing to be ‘in-touch’ with communities and not just using communities as ‘data sources’.
Some of the issues/themes engaged with were:
· Drug abuse in the communities
· Challenges of gender equality
· Education system
· Policing as a collective effort
· Intergenerational Suffering
A brief description of the collective: The women who are Puleng’s research collaborators are part of the Intuthuko (which means ‘to progress’) embroidery project which was formed in 2002 and is based in one of the townships in the East Rand part of the Gauteng Province in South Africa called Etwatwa. It is a community empowerment initiative which seeks to provide poverty alleviation alternatives for ‘previously disadvantaged women’