Funding Community-Engaged Research and Paying People Equitably

April 21, 2021

Reciprocity is a core value in community engaged research. So, too, is adequately and equitably compensating people for their time and labour. But how this lands down in the work is not often widely discussed.

By spotlighting the reflections of people who have engaged extensively in community-engaged research projects as peers, researchers, and community advisors, this webinar explores how to support the communities at the heart of community engaged research through adequate compensation.



Jackie Wong is the Community Strategic Initiatives Associate of SFU's Community-Engaged Research Initiative (CERi).



Nicolas D. Crier, 43, has lived in the city of Vancouver for just over 17 years. He works 5 jobs at a time.

His current resume includes:

  • Peer overdose response, outreach, and education with PHS's Mobile Overdose Prevention Unit;

  • Storytelling and community networking Liaison at Megaphone Magazine;

  • Lived experience strategic advisor with BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services;

  • Staff writer and peer co-leader with the UBC Transformative Health and Justice cluster; and

  • Commmunity engagement partnership liaison for the Vancouver Centre for Social and Economic  Innovation

And somehow he still finds time to play with his kitten, Baby and watch the sunrise with his girlfriend, Dezireh.

Sekani Dakelth is from the Tl'azt'en Nation and calls the Downtown Eastside home. She is passionate about trans rights, sex worker rights and harm reduction. Like many of her peers, Sekani knows firsthand how stigma around drug use acts as a barrier to accessing healthcare. She has worked as a Megaphone vendor for years and officially joined the team in 2018, to help build the Megaphone Speakers Bureau, where she works as the Speakers Bureau coordinator and facilitator. Through that work, she’s dedicated to spreading awareness of everyone’s right to healthcare and challenging audiences to look past the sometimes narrow ideas they have of drug users in that and other settings.

Vanessa Fong is a doctoral student supervised by Dr. Grace Iarocci in the Developmental Psychology program at Simon Fraser University. Her thesis adopts a community engaged approach to understanding quality of life and service navigation in culturally diverse families raising autistic children. Throughout her graduate studies she has become deeply committed to community engagement and knowledge translation. She has experience collaborating with non-profit organizations, policymakers, and individuals and their families in finding potential solutions to improve policies that impact the autism community. Her research has been published in Autism, Autism Research, Quality of Life Research, and the Journal of Pediatric Psychology.

Am Johal is co-director of SFU’s Community-Engaged Research Initiative. He has been Director of SFU's Vancity Office of Community Engagement since December 2010, and is an associate with SFU's Institute for the Humanities and SFU's Centre for Dialogue. He is also a member of the Advisory Committee of SFU's Labour Studies Program. He is the author of Ecological Metapolitics: Badiou and the Anthropocene (Atropos Press, 2015) and co-author with Matt Hern, with contributions from Joe Sacco, of Global Warming and the Sweetness of Life: A Tar Sands Tale (The MIT Press, 2018).