Watershed Management Research Extension Program: Connecting Research and the Community
UBC Okanagan’s Watershed Management Research program was established in 2001 and is headed by internationally recognized scholars and researchers Adam Wei and David Scott—Endowed Research Chairs in Watershed Management. The program has resulted in important discoveries and strong partnerships, which we want to continue to build on. With that in mind, last year a new position was added to the project—Extension Facilitator.
The goal of the new facilitator is to support the researchers, but also to help the program reach further, fostering connections between science and industry, engaging with the community, and enriching student learning. It is an important investment in the Watershed Management Research Program and the community.
Professor, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Protecting BC’s natural resources through technology
UBCO: Jon Corbett – Associate Professor, Geography
Partner: BC Wildlife federation
Working with the BC Wildlife federation, our aim is to raise social awareness about the value of BC’s natural resources, and to document and report issues related to illegal abuse of those resources via an app. The app allows users to photograph potential environmental damage, poaching, or polluting, which are then time-stamped and georeferenced, and then relayed to enforcement agencies.
Associate Professor, Geography
Documenting the Kala Language and traditional ecological knowledge
UBCO: Christine Schreyer – Associate Professor, Anthropology; John Wagner – Associate Professor, Anthropology; David Lacho – Graduate Student, Anthropology
Partners: Bishop Museum, U of Hawaii, Kala Language Committee
The language of Kala is spoken in only six villages in Papua New Guinea. We are working alongside partner researchers and community members to develop more Kala usage in their communities, develop a Kala alphabet, and the first Kala dictionary. Traditional ecological knowledge about the marine and river ecosystems is also being documented, with the end of goal of creating an environmental encyclopedia.
Associate Professor, Anthropology
HIV Awareness and Prevention in Western Canada
UBCO: Susan Frohlick – Professor, Anthropology, Gender and Women’s Studies
Partners: Sexuality Education Resource Centre Manitoba, Immigrant and Refugee, Community Organization of Manitoba, Spence Neighbourhood House; youth from African newcomer communities in Winnipeg, University of Manitoba
We are working with youth from African newcomer communities in Winnipeg on a research project that explores HIV awareness and prevention that is youth-centred and culturally sensitive. The project is part of the CIHR Community-based research HIV/AIDS program, which supports partnerships between community leaders and researchers in carrying out research and capacity-building initiatives relevant to communities engaged in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
Professor, Anthropology/Gender and Women’s Studies
- Our biology department provided classroom outreach visits to over 400 elementary school students, focusing on marine animals.
- Through a partnership with the Central Okanagan Social Studies Teachers Association, three of our faculty members from History, Philosophy and Anthropology gave talks to local social studies teachers on topics including migrant workers and nationalism, Socrates and Citizenship, The ‘Made in British Columbia’ campaign, and ‘Kelowna – from retirement community to University town?’
- Associate Professor, Laura Hooker, served as president of the Central Okanagan Land Trust, which manages around 1,000 acres of property for conservation purposes, as well as a substantial fund for acquiring conservation properties.
- Professor, Lael Parrott served on the Board of Directors of the Alpine Club of Canada— a member of the International Union of Mountaineering Associations
- Associate Professor, Blythe Nilson served as a board member of the Center for Inquiry, Kelowna.