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Date: April 04, 2008

University of Victoria Hosts CUEXPO 2008 in Victoria

The largest gathering of community-based researchers in Canadian history is taking place at the University of Victoria next month. Educators, policy makers, advocates and researchers from around the world, whose community-based projects tackle major issues from homelessness and poverty to food security and sustainable development, will meet from May 4 to 7 for the third national Community-University Exposition (CUexpo 2008). UVic has partnered with various sponsors including the United Way of Canada, the International Development and Research Centre, the Wellesley Institute, the City of Victoria, Campus Community Partnerships for Health (U.S.), Van City Credit Union, the Victoria Foundation, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council to host this international symposium.

“This is a gathering of global significance to partners and advocates for community research, and to societies in general,” says Budd Hall, director of UVic’s Office of Community-Based Research which opened its doors in June 2007 as the first university-wide initiative of its kind in Canada. “By engaging collaboratively in one location, we bring civic engagement into immediate and observable action, and we can tap into collective resources and knowledge to devise real solutions in bettering the social, environmental and economic well-being of communities locally and around the world.”

The theme of CUexpo 2008 is “Community-University Partnerships: Connecting for Change.” Presentations range from low-cost housing solutions across Canada, mapping climate change with Arctic communities, privacy panels for beds in a Montreal homeless shelter, and technology solutions assisting those with disabilities in BC, to restoring troubled neighbourhoods in North America, bringing computer access to small African villages and addressing shattered lives among Palestinian youth.

The format will not be styled as a traditional conference and instead will have a wide range of options from active discussions, round-table sessions, papers, panels and poster exhibits to field trips and walking tours including visits to Dockside Green and a food-and-farm tour of the Saanich Peninsula.

“We have 400 delegates from diverse backgrounds gathered together from more than a dozen countries,” adds Hall, “and the learning opportunities will be vast, various and inspiring. We expect to leave CUexpo 2008 with a legacy of renewed hope, stronger nation-wide community-university partnerships, and a cache of real solutions and new ideas whose impacts can be felt internationally for the enrichment of communities.”

Select events are open to the public in advance of the symposium. Registration is required to attend CUexpo 2008 and volunteer opportunities are available. For more information and to view the preliminary program of events, visit www.cuexpo08.ca/.

This is the third national CUexpo in Canada. The first CUexpo took place in Saskatoon in 2003 followed by CUexpo 2005 in Winnipeg.
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Media contacts:
Dr. Budd Hall (UVic Office of Community-Based Research) at 250-721-8474 or bhall@uvic.ca
Maeve Lydon (UVic Office of Community-Based Research) at 250-721-4630 or mlydon@uvic.ca
Tara Sharpe (UVic Communications) at 250-721-6248 or tksharpe@uvic.ca

UVic media releases and other resources for journalists are available on the World Wide Web at http://communications.uvic.ca/media

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