Name: Peter Kiama
Courses taken: PG Diploma in Development Studies (completed 1999); MA Development Studies (completed 2006)
Current work title / position: Governance and Human Rights Programme Officer-Trocaire, Kenya
“KDSC provides a meeting of cultures, a cultural melting point; not only of ethnic cultures, but a myriad of development practices. This is very helpful exposure for those in development work, to learn and share with others. Such diversity also encouraged heated debates and discussions which eventually, led to the realization that development work is not about winning an argument, but about facilitating processes where communities and government institutions change their attitude and invest in bring transformative change for themselves. Development is not about my ‘truth’ but about many versions of truth.
The fact that KDSC provided me the space for self reflection and soul searching, having been in the field was greatly helpful. I was able to question my previous field practices and attitudes in an environment in which I was not being judged.
The PG Diploma course deepened my practical skills especially in development programming. On return home I was able to lead a process of development a 3 year strategic plan for the diocesan justice and peace programme. This moved us from a project focus to programmed focus approach, a trend that has continued many years after I left the programme.
The MA course deepened my understanding and knowledge of development theory and my analytical skills. This has been of great help in my current role as a programme officer in Trocaire, for instance in providing support to our governance and human rights partners to ensure proper analysis of context, programming priorities, research, monitoring and evaluation.”