The UBC Learning Exchange: Changing Lives in the DTES

The Learning Exchange

The UBC Learning Exchange was founded in 1999 to make connections between the university and people in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. It exists to provide inspiring, mutual learning opportunities for residents and UBC. Please make a donation to support the Learning Exchange here.

The Learning Exchange offers local residents:

  • Drop-in programs providing computer access, learning opportunities, coffee and conversation in a safe, low-pressure environment
  • Leadership and volunteering opportunities that allow them to share their knowledge and passion about arts, culture, technology and more
  • ESL and computer skills workshops
  • Training for residents who wish to further develop their interpersonal skills and build confidence by facilitating education sessions

 

The Learning Exchange is based on the premise that learning is a two-way street, and offers an approach which values and builds on individual and community strengths. In addition to providing two-way learning opportunities for UBC students, faculty members, alumni and community members, there are also unique projects that arise organically out of bringing people together in this unique environment. One great example of this is the Oasis Mural project, where a group of residents came together with UBC alumna Kim Villagante to tackle social isolation, address graffiti, build community and create art.

There is no shortage of people who care about their communities and are looking for ways to strengthen them. Learning Exchange programs bring these people together, and empower them all to learn from each other and make a difference. By empowering people, we give them confidence and a voice, and from that voice we learn much more in return.

Please make a donation to support the Learning Exchange. Your gift will help the Learning Exchange to continue striving to create environments where people can get to know each other, pursue shared interests, and learn from each other. Learning Exchange programs help build community and combat social isolation. They encourage people to express themselves creatively, as well as providing opportunities for language and computer skill development. Participating in Learning Exchange programs empowers residents of the Downtown Eastside to change their lives for the better.

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