What We Do
VIPIRG does research in the public interest, financially supports UVIC students through our community grants program, organizes events and workshops, and operates an alternative resource library.
Our work is carried out by the volunteer board (Coordinating Collective), University of Victoria students and community volunteers, and staff. Our organization is made up of almost entirely students.
The Vancouver Island Public Interest Research Group (VIPIRG) is a not-for-profit, student-funded, volunteer-driven community research and organizing group. VIPIRG operates a resource centre that is independent from the University of Victoria (UVic) and student society. Both students and community members are welcome to make use of our space and resources as well as participate in VIPIRG projects.
Our priorities are sustainability, student engagement, poverty, harm reduction, and strengthening relationships with local indigenous nations.
What We Do
VIPIRG is a place where students and community members connect to work together on social justice and environmental issues.
Students and community members oversee VIPIRG through a volunteer board (known as coordinating collective). VIPIRG staff and volunteers organize events, do action-oriented community-based research, sustain action over time through ongoing working groups, and publish educational materials based on VIPIRG’s current list of priorities.
Students and community members can borrow from VIPIRG’s alternative resource library. This library houses books, magazines, zines and videos on a range of social, political and environmental issues. Check it out!
Community-based research is an alternative to exploitive academic research of communities, and to promote mutual, respectful, and empowering partnerships between researchers and communities with research needs.
We organize regular events that relate to our mandate. VIPIRG staff and volunteers also organize an annual conference each year. We hope that our events make the University of Victoria campus and Victoria at large a better place to call home.
We have a large collection of historical and hard-to-find books in our resource library. VIPIRG is introducing a scholarship program, and a textbook program for UVic students. We also publish an annual magazine targeted at immigrants and refugees.
VIPIRG offers UVic students, collectives and community members support through small and large community grants as well as workshop/conference grants. Eligible individuals can apply for a grant online.
How We're Funded
VIPIRG is funded almost entirely through ancillary student fees; $3.00 per full-time undergraduate student and $1.50 per part-time undergraduate student and $2.00 per graduate student, per term. These fees cover all of VIPIRGs operating costs: office space, human resources, library resources, funding for working groups, campaigns, and publications.
VIPIRG is located on unceded Coast Salish Territories, specifically of the Lekwungen and W̱ SÁNEĆ peoples. The term Coast Salish is used to encompass a number of Indigenous peoples, including Esquimalt, Hul’qumi’num, Klahoose, Lekwungen (Songhees), MALAXEt, Musqueam, OStlq’emeylem, Pentlatch, Scia’new (Beecher Bay), Sliammon, Shishalh, Skxwú7mesh-ulh Úxwumixw, Stó:lo, Straits, Tsleil-Waututh, T’Sou-ke, W̱ SÁNEĆ (Pauquachin, Tsartlip, Tsawout, Tseycum), and Xwemalhkwu.
As well, we would like to recognize all of the ecosystems, ancestors, communities, and people who continue to make VIPIRGs work – and our personal and collective learning – possible.
We occupy space on the territories of the Lekwungen people and are committed to decolonization. We strive to raise awareness and support and engage in grassroots research and activism around social and environmental justice issues. VIPIRG seeks to make connections between campus and community and inspire social change through engaging, inclusive, and non-hierarchical approaches.