On June 26, 2019, CFICE and Community Campus Engage Canada (CCEC), in collaboration with New Commons Development, presented Affordable Housing and Community-Campus Partnerships In Canada: Growing the Potential Role (and Response-Ability) of Post Secondary Institutions (PSIs) to Increase Affordable Housing.

This webinar explored the affordable housing crisis as it relates to students and the wider public and shared innovative examples from the nonprofit development sector for how assets are being leveraged to meet affordable housing goals. The webinar also explored how post secondary institutions can contribute to this important work.

Video Link

If you missed out on the day-of presentation, not to worry. We’ve made it accessible below.


Moderator- Presenter

Abigail Moriah is a connector and registered professional planner specializing in affordable housing development. She works for at New Commons Development and has more than 10 years of experience working in the public and community-based sectors in the areas of community development and affordable housing. Prior to this she consulted for several years with the government and nonprofit organizations, in Halifax and Ottawa.

Alia Abaya’s passion is finding unique ways to bring people together, especially groups which seem like uncommon allies. Alia’s academic background is in Fine Arts and a BA in Sociology.  Her career has spanned social justice, community arts and development, private foundations, corporate responsibility, and now landing at Alterna Savings as the Director of Community Impact supporting building tools and opportunities for Social Finance.

Laurent Levesque is Executive Coordinator and co-founder of UTILE, a nonprofit founded in 2013 that is currently developing 200 units of affordable student housing in Montréal with support from the CMHC, the City of Montréal and the Concordia Student Union. He is also a founding member of the Popular University Student Housing Fund (PUSH Fund).  He has graduated in Urban Planning and is currently pursuing a M.Sc. in Management at HEC Montréal. Finally, he is involved with other nonprofits, most notably as vice-president of the board of the Chantier de l’économie sociale.

Nemoy Lewis, PhD is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow with the Jean Augustine Chair in Education, Community & Diaspora at York University. He earned his doctoral degree in Human Geography from Queen’s University in 2018. For his upcoming Postdoctoral Research at the University of Toronto, Nemoy will explore the growing affordability problems impacting renters in racialized communities since the financialization of the rental markets in Canada and the United States. He has presented papers at local, national, and international conferences, and has contributed to chapters in two books: Neoliberal Chicago and Gentrification as a Global Strategy.

Jorge Sousa is an Associate Professor in the Department of Educational Policy Studies at the University of Alberta. Jorge’s primary approach to research and practice is community-based. His areas of research all fall within the intersection of community development and adult education. The specific topics that his research focuses on includes: community housing; pedagogy for co-operation; strengthening Canada’s Social Economy; governance and member engagement of non-profit and co-operative organizations; higher education and partnerships; and public policy related to community development and community economic development. Focus topics related to the webinar include Focus on affordable housing crisis to community building; The commons and community housing; and Promoting agency, partnerships and social value in the development of new housing opportunities. ​​