Our History

In November 2000, CUP was launched with the goal of bringing researchers and the community together to benefit children, youth and families. With a staff of three and a vision for what was possible, CUP set out to build the partnerships and connections that would be essential to our success. Thanks to the perseverance, hard work, and determination of that early, dedicated group of university and community representatives, CUP soon began to have a ripple effect into the community.

Fostered by the Health Sciences Council, and funded by the contributions of community, government, and university sources, CUP grew from modest beginnings, borrowing space in the corner of a research lab to a unit with dozens of staff members involved in multiple research, lifelong learning, and knowledge mobilization projects and activities. In August 2007, a history document detailing CUP’s evolution to-date was produced by McCaffrey Consulting.

On July 1, 2008, CUP became a unit within the Faculty of Extension. This move represented a coming-of-age for CUP, as we joined with a Faculty dedicated to community engagement, scholarship of engagement, evaluation and continuous learning.

Today, CUP has secured more than $20 million in research funding. Those initial, small ripples have grown to encompass partnerships throughout local, provincial, and national communities. Today, CUP has become synonymous with high quality, community-based research and evaluation. In the process, we’re proud to say we’ve played a role in changing the way researchers and communities work together.