Now that I am half way through my traineeship I can tell you that it has completely exceeded my expectations. I have not only gained experience in the archives but also the library and the many outreach projects the archive is a part of. My traineeship has helped me evolve immensely in short timeframe and gain experiences within different fields.
The main project I am working on is an oral history project based on collecting the stories of ethnic minority women living in the area. The concept of the project is based on the ‘journey’ of these women from their native countries and their settlement in Tower Hamlets. All the oral histories, along with the other materials collected, will be turned into an exhibition in March 2014 and then deposited into the archives for future generations. This is the main purpose of my traineeship, to fill the gaps within the archives, which are the ethnic minority groups and women in particular. For example, the Somali community is the second largest ethnic minority group in Tower Hamlets, yet the archive collections have not been able to represent this. Although the gap still remains large, the skills for the future traineeships have made it possible to start filling this void.