Announcing the 2018 CUES Funding Recipients

Announcing 2018 Recipients of the UBC Community-University Engagement Support (CUES) Fund

FRIDAY, APRIL 13, 2018


The Heiltsuk Cultural Education Centre received CUES Bridge funding for its partnership with UBC’s First Nations and Endangered Languages Program. Photo shows Shirley Windsor (left) and Liz Brown in the Bella Bella Community School Library in June 2017. Photo provided by Annie Guerin

UBC Community Engagement is pleased to announce the recipients of this year’s pilot Community-University Engagement Support (CUES) fund.

In January 2018, not-for-profit community organizations and their UBC partners were invited to submit joint proposals for projects that exemplify the principles of ethical engagement: reciprocity, transparency, flexibility and openness, and respect for difference.

An interdisciplinary community-university panel reviewed 101 applications totalling 2.3 million dollars in requested funding. The panel selected 10 successful proposals and awarded $240,000 to support community partners who collaborate with UBC faculty, staff and students.

Three CUES funding streams were designed to address unique challenges and opportunities at each phase of a community-university partnership: Seed, Bridge, and Implementation. Continue reading to see the successful applicants in each CUES stream and learn more about their projects.

Congratulations to the CUES recipients and thank you to all who applied. Together, we can build a stronger, more sustainable society.

Seed Funding

Seed Funding will support three emerging community-university partnerships to grow their relationships and get their projects off the ground. The recipients are:

1. Facilitator’s Forum: Queer, Trans and Two-Spirited Educators

  • Community Partner: Qmunity (Joel Harnest, Education and Training Coordinator)
  • UBC Partner: Jill Chettiar, MD Candidate (Department of Medicine)
  • Additional Partners: UBC School of Population and Public Health, UBC Medicine, Kwantlen Polytechnic University Criminology, Positive Living BC, Positive Living North, Family Resource Centre Society for the North Okanagan, On My Planet – a Queer Story Archive, Trans Care BC, Vancouver School Board, Vancouver Island University – Positive Space Alliance, Foundry Campbell River, Pride Chapters (across BC)

Seed funding was awarded to Qmunity for its collaboration with Jill Chettiar, MD candidate in UBC’s Department of Medicine. Together, they will develop and host a Facilitator’s Forum on LGBTQ/2S competency training for organizations from rural and remote regions across British Columbia.

2. The Galatea Project

  • Community Partner: Bard on the Beach (Claire Sakaki, Executive Director)
  • UBC Partner: Dr. Patricia Badir (Faculty of Arts, Department of English)
  • Additional partners: Oecologies

CUES Seed funding will support the Galatea Project, a collaboration between a UBC-based environmental humanities research cluster and Bard on the Beach. Funding will bring scholars, students, theatre producers and performers together for a six-day workshop and public reading of an early-modern play that explores the topics of same-sex romance and climate change.

3. Łdakat kha_̂wu’sh îxhdashi Everybody Heals: Fostering Relationships to Support Partnerships and Community-based Participatory Research on a Teslin Tlingit Land-based Healing Program

  • Community Partner: Teslin Tlingit Council (Marina Bailey, Director of Health and Social Services)
  • UBC Partner: Indigenous Research Support Network (Lerato Chondoma, Associate Director)
  • Additional partners: Richard Smarch, Chief Richard Sidney, Clifford Hanuse, Meghan Hajask, Dr. Helen Brown, Kelsey Timler, Dr. Jehannine Austin

The Teslin Tlingit Council was awarded Seed funding to continue developing its relationship with researchers from the School of Nursing, supported by the Indigenous Research Support Network. Together, they are working to develop a culturally-appropriate land-based healing and restoration program for survivors of the Indian Residential School system, their families and communities.

Bridge Funding

Bridge Funding will sustain two established community-university partnerships between funding and support community involvement in the development of proposals for future funding opportunities. The recipients are:

4. Supporting Transitions in Economic Pathways (STEP) Project

  • Community Partner: Embers Eastside Works (Johanna Li, Program Manager)
  • UBC Partner: Faculty of Arts, Department of Sociology (Jenna van Draanen, Post-Doctoral Student)
  • Additional Partners: Lindsey Richardson, BC Centre on Substance Use

Bridge funding was awarded to the community economic development charity, Embers, and a UBC Sociology research team to co-develop and submit a funding proposal to extend the BC Centre on Substance Use’s research and evaluation of economic trajectories in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. CUES funding will support community involvement in the grant development process.

5. Uplifting Voices – Heiltsuk Language Revitalization and Resurgence

Bridge funding was awarded to a longstanding partnership between the Heiltsuk Cultural Education Centre, Bella Bella Community School, and UBC’s First Nations and Endangered Languages Program. The three partners work collaboratively to create new opportunities for speaking, writing and reading the Indigenous and endangered Heiltsuk language. Bridge funding will sustain this work over the next year while partners co-develop applications for new funding opportunities.

Implementation Funding

Implementation funding will enable five longstanding community-university partnerships to mobilize the results, findings or recommendations from a previous collaborative project.


Hiłamas (T.K.) Henderson speaks to youth of Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw School and Eke Me-Xi School about clam digging at Cluxewe beach on north Vancouver Island. Photo provided by the Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw Nation, which received Implementation funding for a project with UBC’s First Nations and Endangered Languages Program.

The Implementation funding recipients are:

6. Building and Assessing Heiltsuk-Designed Homes

  • Community Partner: Heiltsuk Tribal Council (Jaimie Harris, Councillor) and Heiltsuk Tribal Office (Brian-Patrick Fagan, Municipal Director)
  • UBC Partner: Stefania Pizzirani, Post-Doctoral Student (Faculty of Forestry)
  • Additional Partners: UBC School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture; FpInnovations

The Heiltsuk Tribal Council received Implementation funding to develop culturally appropriate and environmentally friendly housing for the Heiltsuk Nation. CUES funding will support the employment of local community members to build the homes, collaboration with the Heiltsuk High School, and ongoing engagement between all partners.

7. Enhancing the Lives of People with Spinal Cord Injury through Peer Mentorship: A Partnered Approach to Research Implementation

  • Community Partner: Spinal Cord Injury BC (Chris McBride, Executive Director)
  • UBC Partner: Dr. Heather Gainforth (School of Health and Exercise Sciences)
  • Additional Partners: Spinal Cord Injury AB, Spinal Cord Injury ON

Spinal Cord Injury BC and Dr. Heather Gainforth of the UBC School of Health and Exercise Sciences received Implementation funding to develop peer mentorship tools, resources and training for people with spinal cord injury (SCI) and their families. SCI peer mentorship is defined as a peer interaction that aims to help individuals who share similar lived experiences adapt and/or thrive.

8. Indigenous Storybooks in Canada+

  • Community Partner: Education without Borders (Dr. Cecil Hershler, Chair)
  • UBC Partner: Dr. Bonny Norton, FRSC, Professor (Faculty of Education)
  • Additional Partners: Dogwood 25; Skidegate Haida Immersion Program (SHIP)

Implementation Funding will support the development of Indigenous Storybooks, a web-based project led by Haida scholar, Dr. Sara Davidson. The project makes linguistically and culturally appropriate K-12 literacy materials freely available to parents, families, community members and educators in Canada and other global sites. In this collaboration between Education without Borders and UBC’s Dr. Bonny Norton, the research advisor of Indigenous Storybooks, CUES funding will help enhance the umbrella website as well as support a pilot project with the Skidegate Haida Immersion Program (SHIP) on Haida Gwaii.

9. K’ank’otłaxan’s awi’nagwis (Knowing our Land): A clam film and knowledge mobilization project in the Gwa’sala – ‘Nakwaxda’xw community

Implementation funding was awarded to the Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw Nation to support K’ank’otłaxan’s awi’nagwis (Knowing our Land), a series of films documenting language and Elders’ traditional ecological knowledge. The films will be co-produced by secondary students at the Eke Me-Xi high school under the mentorship of Our World and an Our World Film Workshop student alumni, to be shared within and beyond the community.

10. Mobilizing and Sharing Sanala for Kwakwaka’wakw Cultural Continuity, Health and Well-Being

  • Community Partner: U’mista Cultural Society (Juanita Johnson)
  • UBC Partners: Dr. Helen Brown (School of Nursing)
  • Additional Partners: Dr. Colleen Varcoe, Kelsey Timler, Barb Cranmer, Vera Newman

Since 2010, the U’mista Cultural Society and Dr. Helen Brown of the UBC School of Nursing have worked together on Sanala (To be whole), an exploration of culturally-rooted health interventions with the ‘Namgis First Nation in Alert Bay, B.C. The project will now receive Implementation funding to share and adapt the learnings and practices of the ‘Sanala Solution’ for other Kwakwaka’wakw communities on Northern Vancouver Island.