Research, Knowledge & Skills exchange for Development

Dreamcatcher researchers analysing the wastelandDreamcatcher has been working across South Africa for 30 years in communities living in recurring poverty, displacement, socio-economic hardship and threats to the environment. Our founder has also worked extensively in the United Kingdom running trials and implementing projects in communities characterised as ‘hard to reach’ and living predominantly in social housing. Our work focuses extensively on outcomes based, results driven research and development projects. We empower communities and we are honoured by the measurable change in quality of life we have been able to deliver on in term of the expressed needs of the communities, our research partners and volunteers.  Together we are leading change in communities via applied research, development, knowledge and skills exchange to ensure sustainable outcomes and legacy in all our mutual efforts.

Researchers analysing waste for Dreamcatcher recycling projectsAs an organisation experienced in community engagement and credibly connected on the ground to communities where our home office is also to be found, we are an ideal research partner. Dreamcatcher provides the local base and support to work in the team with volunteers, researchers, skills -and knowledge exchange partners, on projects with potential to outcomes leading to innovation and sustainable change for the good in communities.

Much of our work (yet not exclusively), addresses the empowerment of women and youth to identify what needs to be done or change, to become the change makers in their communities. Our aim is to transcend the current status quo of poverty, spearhead innovation and measure the impact of our development programmes. To this end, we have been working with universities, colleges, local authorities, researchers and volunteers as research partners from around the world on skills -and knowledge exchange projects which can assist to guide informed future policy decisions and actions.

We pioneer innovation and identify where appropriate, the barriers to change or improvement in communities negatively affected by socio-economic hardships and deprivation. In this regard we also focus on outcomes  and workable models which have inherent potential to duplicate/apply or share with other communities. We therefore work as intermediaries and co-ordinate research programmes with the full co-operation and consultation with the relevant communities as involved partners. In the past we have gained extensive knowledge focusing on the barriers to development which impact upon quality of life and the ability of communities to maintain sustainable development and growth. We trial implemented models and are committed to outcomes based research projects.

Our motto is Go truly Local for sustainable outcomes and it is here where visitors and scholars to South Africa get involved, engage and work with and in the communities as Global Citizens. Our models are used widely as case studies for innovation and we welcome the opportunity to focus with partners on the following areas:

  • Research and development in social enterprises;
  • Tourism -and peripheral services to stimulate micro-enterprise development;
  • Environment, waste impact -and re-use;
  • Health and wellness;
  • Human resource development;
  • Behaviour change;
  • Arts, crafts and design.

Research, Knowledge & Skills Exchange for DevelopmentWe have been guided since 2000 by the UN Millennium Development Goals, now also informed by the the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals turning aspiration into sustainable outcomes. Our remit is to focus locally but partner with organisations globally to reach the goals for a better quality of life for the communities and to develop models which we can share with other communities, countries and training institutions.