Completed for: Trent Centre for Community-Based Education : Supervising Professor: Nadine Changfoot
The Community First: Impacts of Community Engagement (CFICE) is a Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) funded research project designed to provide insights into how post-secondary institutions and community partners can establish and maintain successful relationships that ultimately maximize the value created for non-profit organizations. CFICE is organized into five self-managing research hubs; the focus of this report is the Peterborough and Haliburton section of the Community Environmental Sustainability (CES) hub. Hub members participated in interviews and a focus group to discuss the results of four first year demonstration projects. For the most part, results were favourable, especially for community-based organizations, who pointed to a high level of influence and a number of net gains such as increased capacity and the development of valuable resources. A notable finding was the important role of community-university bridging organizations, U-Links and the Trent Centre for Community-Based Education. Participants identified both organizations as a critical ingredient to the smooth functioning of demonstration projects. Challenges participants identified included delay of grant funds, delayed ethics approval and university resistance to community-based research projects in some areas.