A diverse range of Indigenous-focused projects will receive a significant funding boost this month to help transform innovative and impactful ideas into reality. Through the Indigenous Strategic Initiatives Fund (ISI Fund), UBC has committed a total of $4 million this academic year to helping advance the rights of Indigenous peoples as well as the crucial journey towards meaningful reconciliation.
The ISI Fund is a cross-campus initiative at the UBC Vancouver and UBC Okanagan campuses that directly supports the implementation of the UBC Indigenous Strategic Plan (ISP). The announcement of successfully funded initiatives coincides with the two-year anniversary of UBC’s ISP launch.
There are three funding streams: Innovative (Stream One), Transformative (Stream Two) and Student-led (Stream Three), the latter being announced last month. Successful Stream One Innovative projects will receive between $30,000 – $100,000 for one or two years. Successful Stream Two Transformative projects will receive between $50,000 – $250,000 for one to three years. The initiatives have been developed by faculty, staff and post-doctoral students/fellows at the UBC Vancouver and UBC Okanagan campuses and many involve collaborations with community partners.
Of the 30 projects granted funding, examples include:
- Advancing the Faculty of Medicine’s response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s (TRC) Calls to Action and its strategic plan. Redressing the harms of colonialism and Indigenous racism in health care and research spaces by bringing together young Indigenous scholars and health care providers, First Nations and Indigenous leadership, experts in anti-racism and Indigenous rights, Elders, knowledge holders, Indigenous faculty and staff
- Creating systemic change for Indigenous students through increasing awareness and knowledge of how colonization impacts campus counselling systems
- Improving health outcomes for Indigenous Peoples across Canada through nursing, via a cross-university partnership
- Establishing a self-sustainable micro-forest on the UBC Okanagan campus, guided by traditional ecological knowledge
- Supporting the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation meet ambitious climate emissions targets through learning about respectful and reciprocal partnerships pertaining to Indigenous-led climate action
- Developing new platforms for reciprocal training between Musqueam (xwməθkwəy̓əm) Indian Band and the UBC Laboratory of Archeology to improve employment opportunities in the cultural resource management sector