Tkaronto K4C Hub
University of Toronto Scarborough
Location: Canada

Following conversations about the importance of community expertise and to ensure that research are also driven by community needs,  K4C Tkaronto was co-founded in the summer of 2019 by the Centre for Critical Development Studies at UTSC, OISE at the U of T, community partners Toronto Centre for Community Learning & Development (CL&D), and Ontario Council for International Cooperation (OCIC).

As of March 2020, mentors from these organisations have been trained and certified by K4C Global to become resources in future community-based participatory research projects. They have also been deeply embedded in the pedagogy of the cluster of courses that form the core of the Community Knowledge Learning Hub, an experiential learning project funded by the Provost at the U of Toronto.

  1. Our collective goal is to enable transformative change by providing community-based education and research learning opportunities (online and in-person) to students, educators, academics, community development and international cooperation practitioners, and residents in our city, province, and beyond.
  2. Working with communities and partner organizations in support of their education and human development goals
  3. Creating and providing access to CBPAR training for community partners in our region and internationally – through the development of learning institutes that could take place online or in person.
  4. Share knowledge and practices with other hubs within the K4C consortium

Our Members:

University of Toronto Scarborough (Centre for Critical Development Studies)

Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto

Toronto Centre of Learning & Development

Ontario Council for International Cooperation

Our Projects:

Immigrant Women Integration Program (IWIP) Community Based Participatory Action Research Course

This is a project-based, post-secondary level course about the principles and practices of Community-Based Participatory Action Research (CBPAR) for immigrant and newcomer women living in the Greater Toronto Area to explore the potential of CBPAR for social change. For the purposes of this course CBPAR is defined as “A research approach that involves active participation of stakeholders, those whose lives are affected by the issue being studied, in all phases of research for producing useful results to make positive changes.” (Nelson, Ochocka, Griffin & Lord, 1998, p.12)

In the first part of the course students develop a practical understanding of CBPAR purpose, principles and phases and a mix of more traditional and arts-based research methods through readings, reflection, and experiential learning activities. In the second part of the course students have the opportunity to design and carry out a CBPAR project on a topic of their choice either on their own or in small groups.

By the end of this course students are able to:

  1. Explain the main purpose, principles and phases of CBPAR.
  2. Design and lead a CBPAR project on a topic of their choice and carry out all phases of the CBPAR process, starting with identifying a research problem/question and the relevant stakeholders/actors and participants; creating a project plan; choosing appropriate community engagement, participant recruitment, and information gathering methods;
  3. Use a variety of qualitative, quantitative and arts-based CBPAR methods;
  4. Recruit participants and collect research data based on research ethics principles and protocols;
  5. Analyze quantitative data (basic analysis using free survey applications (e.g. google forms), and analyze qualitative data using basic manual coding techniques, and
  6. Create a succinct report on research findings (using PowerPoint).

Knowledge Equity Lab

The Knowledge Equity Lab is an inclusive, trans-disciplinary space that seeks to challenge multiple forms of exclusion within the highly unequal structure of knowledge production and exchange. It aims  to be an experimental space which enables the cultivation, exploration and celebration of different ways of knowing.

Housed at the Centre for Critical Development Studies at UTSC, the lab enables collaboration and partnerships with diverse knowledge makers seeking to advance shared goals of knowledge inclusion, epistemic diversity, and the centering of marginalized and underrepresented knowledge as a means of social justice and change.

Community Based Participatory Action Research Summer Institute

Summer Virtual Institute on Community-Based Participatory Action Research (CBPAR) aims to support capacity-building of civil society organizations and community members in Ontario.

Over the course of four weekly 90-minute online modules participants are introduced to CBPAR principles and phases, and learn how to use CBPAR methods observation and arts-based methods through readings, resources, reflection, and experiential learning activities. Given the time limitation, this Institute will not be covering the full range of CBPAR methods.

Our 2020-2021 Hub Coordinator:

Karen Villanueva-Paez: is a Colombian community worker currently based in Tkaronto, Kanata (Toronto, Canada). She graduated from York University with an HBA in International Development Studies and is currently pursuing a Master in Social Work at the University of Toronto. Karen currently holds the portfolio of Supervisor of Programming at the Toronto Centre for Learning & Development. For the past 6 years, through her community development practice, Karen integrates her passion for popular education, activism and visual arts to support immigrant and newcomer populations living in underserved communities. Karen collaborates with grassroots stakeholders to create programs that serve their own communities and foster their capacity to enact social change.