Strategic Equity & Anti-Racism Enhancement Fund

The Strategic Equity & Anti-Racism (StEAR) Enhancement Fund provides funding for student, faculty and/or staff-led initiatives that seek to advance UBC’s equity and anti-racism priorities.

Funding overview

The StEAR Enhancement Fund is designed to support community-led initiatives that advance broad campus equity and anti-racism goals and priorities aligned with UBC’s StEAR Framework and Roadmap for Change. This year, a total of $300,000 is available across two calls for proposal to take place between September 2023 and August 2024. Applicants can apply for funds from $500 and up to $10,000 per project.

Funding is available for projects (for example events, programs and activities) at UBC Vancouver and UBC Okanagan that align with one or more of the following thematic streams (notwithstanding the use of an intersectional lens):

  • Racism/racial equity: Initiatives that seek to primarily address forms of racism and to advance racial equity. These may be directed to or augmented by the Indigenous Strategic Fund if appropriate.
  • Ableism/disability equity: Initiatives that seek to primarily address forms of ableism and to advance disability equity.
  • Sexism, heterosexism, homophobia, transphobia/sexual & gender equity: Initiatives that seek to primarily address forms of sexism, heterosexism, homophobia, transphobia and to advance equity in relation to sexual and gender identity.

Eligibility

Applications will be accepted from:

  • Campus community groups led by an employee of UBC, student groups or clubs affiliated with the Alma Matter Society, the Graduate Student Society, Students’ Union Okanagan of UBC, a Faculty or school or another officially-recognized UBC organization.
  • Applicants must be current UBC students, faculty or staff. Students must be in good standing at the time of the application and for the duration of the project.

Proposals seeking funding for academic research that would be carried out in the normal course of work or study or that may be eligible for research funding will not be accepted.

Funding considerations

An annual funding amount will be allocated depending on discretionary funds available to and/or secured by the Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion and the Vice-President, Students. For the September 2023 to August 2024 academic year, a total of $300,000 is available for distribution across UBC Vancouver and UBC Okanagan.

  • The StEAR Enhancement Fund Committee may allocate up to $10,000 to a single proposal; generally, grants will range between $500 to $10,000.
  • Funds cannot be used for recurring salaries or operating funds. Where an initiative is seeking seed funding for a pilot initiative or as a bridge towards an ongoing initiative, a rationale for short-term seed or bridge funding must be strong and there needs to be a concrete sustainability plan.
  • Funds will be provided up front.
  • Allocated funds that are unspent, or in the event that the project/initiative/event/program is cancelled, must be returned.
  • Funds cannot be used to cover personal professional development or to attend conferences or workshops.
  • Funds will be transferred to UBC faculty/school/department account OR via cheque payable to the AMS, GSS, or the SUO, care of the student group/club account.
  • Projects must be completed within a year from approval of funding. A project report must be submitted to the committee one month after the completion of the project. Future funding for the individual or group will be contingent upon receipt of this information.

Key dates

Starting September 13th, applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis every six to eight weeks until August 2024 or until the funds run out.

Preliminary Term 1 dates by when successful applicants will be announced:

  • October 25th (submit your application by October 11th)
  • December 6 (submit your application by November 13th)

Project and reporting deadline

Projects must be completed within a year from approval of funding.  A project report must be submitted one month after the completion of the project.

Adjudication process and criteria

The StEAR Enhancement Fund Committee will review the proposals based on the eligibility, assessment and awarding criteria. The committee co-chairs will contact applicants to notify them of the decision and rationale, and announce approved proposals within four weeks of the deadline for applications.

The Committee will ensure fair consideration of applications both campuses, from individuals and groups, as well as from students, faculty and staff community members. Any remaining funds will be carried over and into the general funding pool for redistribution the following year.

The following criteria will be used to assess proposals and determine the level of funding:

  • Clarity of alignment of the initiative with the purpose of the fund and any aspect of the StEAR Framework;
  • The feasibility of the proposal – realistic timeline and budget;
  • A plan for sustainability of the initiative into the future;
  • The availability of funds within any given funding cycle;
  • Benefit to and engagement of historically, persistently or systemically marginalized groups at UBC;
  • Proposals demonstrating collaborative partnerships across units, departments, Faculties/schools, VP portfolios or campuses are encouraged;
  • Proposals that leverage matching funds, shared funding, or additional sources of revenue are highly encouraged.

StEAR Enhancement Fund Committee

The Vice-President, Students and the Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion are co-executive sponsors of the StEAR Enhancement Fund. The Office of the Vice-President, Students (OVPS) and the Equity & Inclusion Office (EIO) will jointly administer the fund and constitute the StEAR Enhancement Fund Committee that represents both UBC Vancouver (UBCV) and UBC Okanagan (UBCO). The committee for the 2023/2024 funding cycle will include the following members:

  • Co-Chairs: Executive Director, OVPS and Director, Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Anti-Racism, EIO
  • Manager, Administration, EIO
  • Associate Director, IBPOC Initiatives, OVPS
  • 1 faculty lead– appointed by the Provost, UBCO
  • 1 faculty lead – appointed by the Provost, UBCV
  • AMS representative
  • SUO representative
  • GSS representative

The committee will forward a report of its activities annually to the President’s Executive.

Application process

Applicants are responsible for ensuring that the application is fully completed and all required information is included for the committee’s consideration by the relevant funding cycle deadline posted. Applicants who require assistance to navigate the application process may email stear.fund@ubc.ca for support or further information.