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Somali community needs

Somali Needs 2

Cardiff University is working in partnership with Cardiff’s Somali community to build a knowledge-base of Somali community needs in the city.

Since 2019 academics from Cardiff University have been engaged in visits to Somaliland to develop research collaborations on some of the country’s most pressing issues.


Cardiff hosts one of the largest Somali communities in the UK. The origins of the community are closely entwined with Cardiff’s emergence as a port between the late 19th and mid-20th centuries. Despite the history of the Somali presence in Cardiff, the community and its needs have not been extensively researched for several decades.

Through collaboration, this project seeks to build a robust evidence-base of Somali community needs in Cardiff that can be used as the basis of community-led projects and funding proposals.

The Cardiff-Somaliland Working Group was set up to forge closer links between members of the Somaliland community in the city, academic staff and the Government of Somaliland.

Experts from a variety of disciplines across the university are exploring how their research can help the country as it rebuilds and recovers from civil war.

The research focuses on a number of related topics, including migration, settlement and integration experiences, identity and place, health and well-being, education, employment and housing. The project is also interested in finding out about experiences of discrimination (e.g. racism or Islamophobia in the spaces of the city and/or the workplace).

Post-Covid, the challenges facing the Somali Community in Cardiff have increased, stakeholders from across Health, Education, Employment, Policing, Local Authority and Welsh Government have been looking at ways to work collaboratively on addressing the socio-economic and well-being of the community.

The research team consists of Dr Richard Gale, Dr Andrew Williams, Ali Abdi, Sara Kalinleh and Samia Zarak.