Research collaborations at Addison Rd
Two Shopfront students, Shanna Dib and Alex McInnes, have recently completed research projects with Addison Road Community Centre (ARCC), a not for profit organisation that provides working space for more than 35 community, cultural and environmental organisations in Marrickville. As part of Social Inquiry placement subject, the two students worked to provide research support on a range of pressing social issues impacting the local community.
Shanna Dib conducted research into poverty and the effects of poverty in the Inner West. She actively participated in focus groups with migrant communities and immersed herself in the Addison Road Community Centre working environment. Shanna also participated in forums and inter-agency meetings as part of her research and to support ARCC.
Alex McInnis also completed a research project for ARCC examining the closure of Women’s Refuges following the Going Home Staying Home reforms. Alex utilised information collected from a collaborative forum with a range of organisations and from interviews with members of the local community to develop advocacy and communication material for ongoing campaigns. Her research will help ARC to amplify women’s voices on the issues they’re speaking about, and continue to highlight issues with current funding arrangements. It will help communities to secure funding in the future and support efforts to advocate for the government to take on the responsibility of funding women’s services.
Alex loved working on the project; “It's an amazing place to work…It's been great to work with people who are genuinely driven by and interested in political and social issues, and witness how people's ideas can become tangible projects when they have the resources and space”. She believes it has enhanced her university experience and helped her realise that this is the kind of work that makes her feel fulfilled. She explains that the experience “has made me value everything I've learnt through my degree…I can appreciate how its all contributed to me being able to research and work in the real world.”
Alex would recommend a Shopfront project to other students because of the “amazing organisations students are partnered with and the considerable support the program provides them throughout the experience.”
ARCC were thrilled to have the students on board and has now hired Alex to work with them on future research projects. Rosanna Barbero, the General Manager at ARCC said the following about the students: “They are fabulous…their work is exceptional and I am honoured to work with them.”