Return to campus — information and updates »

Community Health and Social Innovation (CHASI) Hub

Projects and research program

Working with community and government partners like the First Nations Health Authority, the Fraser Health Authority, and the Abbotsford, Mission and Chilliwack Divisions of Family Practice, the new Community Health and Social Innovation Hub will lead collaborative and cross-sectoral projects that use research and community engagement to rapidly identify challenges with respect to access and differential experiences of health and social wellness and developing innovations to respond to these challenges.

With evidence-informed, technology-driven interventions that improve access to health and social services, together we can create better health outcomes that lead to thriving communities.

For more information on how you can join or support this work, contact Dr. Martha Dow at or

Current projects

First Nations Communities Fire Risk Assessment

The National Indigenous Fire Safety Council is tasked with assuring fire safety among First Nations Communities, which has a fire incident and casualty rate significantly higher than the fire incident and casualty rate for Canadian communities overall. This partnership between the HUB and the Aboriginal Firefighters Association of Canada (AFAC) will create a demographic profile of at-risk people and places on First Nations communities in Canada who will be served by the Fire Safety Programs and Services with the goal of significantly reducing the fire rate in these First Nations communities in Canada.

Developing COVID-19 Risk Communication and Community Engagement Readiness Strategy Guidance for Travelers Visiting Friends and Relatives (VFR)

With funding from the Government of Canada, and led by Dr. Cindy Jardine, UFV’s Canada Research Chair in Health and Community, the COVID-19 knowledge mobilization project team will conduct research on the health information needs and gaps faced by families visiting friends and relatives (VFR) in their countries of origin. Community partnerships include the Fraser Health Authority; the Abbotsford, Chilliwack and Mission Divisions of Family Practice; and Archway, Chilliwack and Mission Community Services.

The Utility of Physician Referred Outdoor Physical Activity for South Asian Women

This project is a partnership, led by Dr. Iris Lesser, between the University of the Fraser Valley, Divisions of Family Practice and City of Abbotsford Parks, Recreation and Culture. The goal of this project is to explain the importance of physician referral for exercise programming in engaging South Asian female patients who would benefit from lifestyle changes. The main outcome of this study will be the adherence to an outdoor physical activity program offered to South Asian females and instructed by a South Asian female, 3 times per week for 12 weeks. Secondary outcomes include physical activity engagement and changes since COVID-19, the impact of the intervention on barriers and facilitators to physical activity, exercise self-efficacy, perceived stress and health-related quality of life.


Research Assistant Development (RAD) program

The new Health and Social Innovation HUB at UFV is a physical and virtual space for researchers, students, government partners, and community and corporate collaborators to engage in a manner that sparks and fuels out of the box thinking about health and social issues from inception to implementation.

Research assistants are instrumental in the HUB’s encouragement of inter-disciplinary and multi-sectoral engagement. The HUB’s Research Assistant Development (RAD) Program is hoping that the Office of the VP Students will be interested in sponsoring a student RA position to support research, program evaluation, policy analysis, training, and educational opportunities in your area.

One of the many exciting aspects of the RAD Program is that each student will work on the supervision of a senior researcher in the HUB. Each Research Assistant will work with their supervisor to design a job description that supports the development of the student’s interests and academic and professional skills in concert with the needs of the funding partner, in this case, UFV’s VP Students. Given the nature of the HUB, the research assistant will participate in all aspects of the research and community engagement activities from their sponsors bringing an idea forward, to the development of a research strategy, to the knowledge mobilization activities once the project has been completed. Students will have opportunities to develop their professional and academic skills and develop their curriculum vitaes in ways that once again demonstrate the tremendous opportunities available to undergraduate students at UFV.

Contact Us