Partnership Recognition and Exploration (PRE) Fund

Get up to $2,000 for community-university collaboration and relationship building. 

Every day, people on and off-campus work together on joint initiatives that benefit both the community and UBC. Whether it’s engaged research, experiential learning, planning and policy development, educational programming, dialogue projects, workshops and beyond — our impact grows when we work together. 

The Community Engagement Partnership Recognition and Exploration (PRE) Fund awards up to $2,000 to fill small resource gaps and empower community partners to build reciprocal relationships with UBC students, faculty, and staff. 

Awarding up to $70,000 annually, the fund supports applicants looking to develop new or existing community-university relationships and especially welcomes collaborative initiatives that advance: 

  • Equity, diversity, and inclusion  
  • Indigenous engagement and reconciliation  
  • Health innovation and community wellbeing  
  • Sustainability and climate action  
  • Teaching, learning, and research excellence 

Applications are currently closed 

The fund is expected to open again in June, 2023. Funding is open to BC-based community partners and UBC students, faculty and staff. 

Click here to jump to application FAQs.

The PRE Fund in action 

Similar to our larger CUES Fund, PRE funding is provided directly to community partners — allowing communities to decide where funding will be most impactful instead of the university. Since 2017, the fund has awarded more than $450,000 to 289 community-university partnerships, with approximately 50% of funding going to IBPOC-led community organizations.  


Who can apply?

Each application must include two applicants who are the main points of contact for the proposal—a co-applicant that represents an eligible community partner and a co-applicant that is a current UBC faculty, staff, or student at either Vancouver or Okanagan campuses. Eligible community partners should be a registered charity or qualified donee listed by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)

If the main community partner co-applicant is not a qualified donee, a community organization that is a qualified donee or a UBC department may be permitted to act as a financial intermediary. If you know who may act as a financial intermediary for your project, please indicate this in your application. 

If additional partners beyond the two co-applicants will be involved in the proposed work, please indicate this in the project and partnership/relationship description sections in the online application form.   

The PRE fund is not able to support projects outside of Canada.  

Please contact us if you are not sure if you should apply. 

Who receives the funding?

Funds are intended to go directly to community partner organizations. As a result, the university is obliged to comply with restrictions under the federal Income Tax Act which requires that organizations be a registered charity or qualified donee listed by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) in order to receive funds from UBC.

However, we understand that in some cases providing funds directly to a community partner is not possible or is not appropriate.  If you are not certain how funds can/should be distributed for your project, please contact us to discuss potential options. 

What are the PRE Fund criteria?

Strong PRE fund applications will indicate how the will address the following criteria: 

  • Address an identified need of the community partner and/or the communities they work with. 
  • Improve community access to UBC research, teaching and learning resources.  
  • Advance reciprocal, mutually beneficial community-university engagement to advance:
    • Equity, diversity and inclusion
    • Indigenous engagement and reconciliation 
    • Health innovation and community wellbeing 
    • Sustainability and climate action 
    • Teaching, learning, and research excellence 
  • Fill a resource gap that supports a community’s or community organization’s capacity to work with UBC faculty, staff and/or students. 

Please also review the eligible budget expenses under the ‘How may funds be used?’ and ‘What can funds NOT be used for?’ FAQ (see below).

How do I apply?

To apply, submit an application using the online form to describe the project and partnership, how funds will be used and when, and the intended outcomes or objectives. 

  • Submit an online application
  • Applications will be accepted by UBC Community Engagement until December 31, 2022 or available funds are exhausted.  

How much money is still available?

We have now received enough applications to exhaust the PRE Fund budget for this year. Last updated December 6, 2022.

How may funds be used?

PRE funds are intended to go to the community partners to fill a resource gap in their partnership with UBC. In general, it is expected that projects will start within 60 days of being funded and that funds will be used within six months of the project start date.

Possible activities might include ones that: 

  • Respond to the impacts of COVID-19 within the community partnership. 
  • Build or share skills through workshops, training, experiential learning, asset-based skill building, etc. 
  • Build or share knowledge through events, dialogues, engaged research, toolkits, etc. 
  • Recognize or celebrate achievements through awards, debriefs, appreciation/evaluation, etc. 
  • Extend or deepen engagement through community mapping, artistic or creative events, public forums, network building, etc. 
  • Inform the development and planning for a CUES proposal (please note funds may not be used to cover direct costs for drafting a CUES application). 

Funds can be used to cover costs that are integral to these activities. Some examples include: 

  • Honoraria and stipends (see ineligible costs related to wages and salaries, and hiring UBC students) 
  • Equipment/supplies 
  • Transportation or delivery costs 
  • Facilities and space rental
  • Publications and printing materials 
  • Costs for community partners and community members to attend events  

Note that these are just examples and we invite you to submit expenses that meet the needs of your work. Please contact us and we will be happy to talk this through with you. 

What can funds NOT be used for?

The following activities are outside the scope of this fund: 

  • Activities that do not include at least one community partner organization and a current UBC student, faculty, or staff.   
  • Hiring UBC students 
  • Payment of UBC salaries or wages, including to pay for the drafting of a CUES application 
  • Core operational costs for community organizations 
  • Fees for UBC faculty, students, or staff to attend conferences, events, etc. 
  • Expenses that include alcoholic beverages 
  • Projects that have been supported by PRE funding in the same year 
  • Funding that flows directly to an individual (PRE funds are intended to go to partner organizations) 
  • Projects outside of Canada 

Do I need to provide a report at the conclusion of our project?

Yes. Partners are asked to a submit a report within one month of wrap up. We are flexible if you require longer than one month to share back. There are several ways you can submit a report: 

Option 1: Short Written Submission 

  • A brief description of who was involved, what happened, what needs were filled or impacts made. 

Option 2: Conversation 

  • A conversation with UBC CE staff to share what happened and any learnings from the work together. This can be with both or either partner as appropriate. 

Option 3: Your Choice 

  • Your project may already be creating documentation of what happened and the learnings through a report, research, event, video, etc. We would be happy to receive/participate in what you’re already creating as your end of project submission. 

Can I apply to the PRE fund more than once?

We can fund each project or partnership once per year. If you are not sure if you qualify, please contact us. Individual applicants can apply more than once as long as the application is related to different projects/partnerships. Please also consider applying for funds through the Community-University Engagement Support Fund

How long does it take to fully process an application and fund an approved project?

We aim to approve applications and notify co-applicants within one week of submission. Funding an approved proposal takes 2-4 weeks once an application is approved.  We recognize that there can be delays in the application review process; whenever this happens, we will do our very best to communicate with all applicants. If you have any questions about the timeline, please do not hesitate to connect with the CE office.

How do I receive funding? What information needs to be on the invoice? Do you have a sample invoice?

As part of the approval notice by email, successful applicants will receive a link to complete a Letter of Agreement (LOA) and submit a completed invoice. Each invoice should include:

  • The name of the organization who will receive the funds
  • Contact information for main point of contact related to financing the project
  • GST number for the organization
  • Name of the project
  • Funding amount that was approved.

We will provide a sample invoice for all PRE Fund recipients as part of the approval package. LOA’s require electronic or written signatures of each co-applicant, as well as for any third-party financial intermediaries. 

In special circumstances, UBC co-applicants may receive funds on behalf of a project team. Please contact us for more information before submitting an application.

Still have questions? Contact us at We’re here to help.

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