Cuso International expands e-volunteering to more Canadian universities and colleges


A group of woman sitting around a conference table with laptops

OTTAWA – Cuso International announced today that its e-volunteering classroom program has expanded to eight Canadian institutions across Canada with the start of the 2019-2020 academic year. Cuso International is the only Canadian NGO that offers a formal e-volunteering program matching volunteers with various tasks that can be completed online. This innovative program links classrooms with Cuso projects around the world to give students real-world, real-time learning experience.

More than 300 students have participated in the e-volunteer university program since its launch in 2016. This September, 140 students have enrolled in a Cuso e-volunteer classroom curriculum for the Fall 2019 semester.

Their collective efforts will support Cuso’s work in Colombia, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Myanmar, Jamaica, Nigeria, and Philippines. Curriculum topics cover such disciplines as international development, international business, agriculture, gender and reproductive health rights, environment, natural resource management, and communications and marketing.

In one recent example, 15 students in the University of Guelph Institute of Development Studies (IDEV 3300) presented their research to their classmates and Cuso International staff in Ottawa and remotely in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Their research was shared with beneficiaries in Ethiopia to help strengthen maternal and newborn care and health practices.

According to Dr. Craig Johnson, PhD, Professor and Director (Acting), Guelph Institute of Development Studies: “Words cannot describe how impressed I was with the student presentations and the ensuing discussion. This is exactly the kind of experiential student-centred learning that we’ve been hoping to foster here in the institute.”

Institutional Partners for the 2019-2020 e-volunteer classrooms include:

• Mount Royal University (2019)
• Centennial College (2019)
• University of Ottawa (2019)
• University of British Columbia (2019)
• University of Toronto (2019)
• University of Guelph (2020)
• Carleton University (2020)
• Sheridan College (2020)

“E-volunteering in the classroom is a win-win for all involved,” says Jacques Rajotte, Senior Director of International Programs, Cuso International. “By providing students with real-world experience in areas of their passion and interest, we’re turning theory into practice and building confidence for future leaders, while supporting our partner organizations.”

Cuso International
Cuso International is a non-profit development organization that works to reduce poverty and inequality through the efforts of highly skilled volunteers, collaborative partnerships and compassionate donors. Established in 1961, Cuso International is a registered charity in Canada and the United States.

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