Attending the Association of Commonwealth Universities summer school hosted by Stellenbosch University in South Africa from the 2nd to the 10th of July under the theme “Truth and Reconciliation: From Apartheid to Transitional Justice” was an eye-opening and transformative experience.

Throughout the program, I had the privilege of engaging with brilliant minds from diverse backgrounds, all united by a common passion for truth and reconciliation. The sessions were thoughtfully curated, offering a deep exploration of South Africa’s complex history and its journey towards healing after the dark era of apartheid.

The lectures and discussions were intellectually stimulating, allowing us to critically analyse the challenges and triumphs of the truth and reconciliation process. Learning about the courageous efforts made by individuals and communities to confront their painful pasts and seek understanding was both inspiring and humbling.

Beyond the academic aspect, the summer school facilitated rich cultural exchanges. Interacting with fellow participants from different parts of the Commonwealth brought a global perspective to the topic, enriching our discussions and fostering lasting friendships.

The experiential learning opportunities were thoughtfully integrated into the program. Visits to historical sites and conversations with local activists and survivors further deepened our understanding of the impact of apartheid and the ongoing efforts towards reconciliation in South Africa.

As a participant, I left the summer school with a profound sense of appreciation for the power of truth and reconciliation in healing societies and fostering unity. The lessons learned will undoubtedly influence my future academic pursuits and personal endeavours, empowering me to become a more informed and compassionate global citizen.

Many thanks to Dr Timothy Peacock for helping me with a reference which I believe was the cornerstone for my successful application, I am forever grateful. I am immensely grateful to the Association of Commonwealth Universities and Stellenbosch University for organizing such a remarkable program and providing us with an unforgettable experience that will continue to resonate with me for years to come.

Moreblessing Takura Madzikatire