Today our group learned a lot from local agencies doing work in reconciliation, community development, and community-based research. We spent time learning from Dee Stitt and his colleague, Billy, at Charter NI. They shared personal experiences as members of the Ulster Defence Association and their current Charter projects focused on youth development, community safety, and employment and training. Next, we learned about the varied projects of the Skainos Centre including a community garden, homeless shelter, and daycare center. We ended the day by meeting with Katy, Brendan, Olivia at the Institute for Conflict Research. It was fascinating to hear about their community based research projects aimed at improving the quality of life for people living in Belfast and beyond.
We are enjoying the hospitality of Ireland! Thank you to Billy for the chocolate snacks and coffee & tea this morning. Lunch provided by Skainos was delicious – the warm soup hit the spot on this chilly day! Finally, the Institute for Conflict Research served us cookies and hot tea/ coffee which helped to perk us up at the end of a full day.
Tomorrow we leave Belfast and head to Dublin. We’ve thoroughly enjoyed spending some extended time here and getting to know the area and the people.