Enabling the passion of a new generation of peacebuilders

Bank Kindred Credit Union
Client Kindred Credit Union Centre for Peace Advancement (CPA)
Location Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

While we’re used to hearing of innovation in the fields of science and technology, at the University of Waterloo, innovation takes place in yet another area – peace – in the collaborative space of the Kindred Credit Union Centre for Peace Advancement (CPA).

The CPA officially opened in 2014 after a transformative gift from Kindred Credit Union (Kindred) to Conrad Grebel University College on the campus of the University of Waterloo. The CPA is home to a range of peace scholars,  practitioners from local peace building organizations, and budding peace-related initiatives. Through forging opportunities for collaboration in the form of research, training, and community engagement, the CPA works to advance expansive and innovative understandings and practices of peace locally and globally.

“The CPA is an innovative expression of our core values as our credit union remains committed to sharing resources in support of building peaceful, just, and prosperous communities,” says Brent Zorgdrager, Kindred’s chief executive officer.

The CPA’s flagship program space is the Epp Peace Incubator – over 450 square feet of open and shared space acting as a home-base for peace-related initiatives at varying stages of development. A “beehive” of entrepreneurial, interdisciplinary activity, students and community members benefit from mentorship, training, and seed funding to develop their work. In the first three years of the program, 16 peace start-ups have been supported, ranging in diversity from peace education in schools to a group of Waterloo engineering students, called Demine Robotics, working to defuse landmines in Cambodia and around the world.

Kindred continues to partner with the CPA through financial and in-kind support. The CPA has engaged over 10,000 community members through school workshops, public events, and exhibits. Its peacebuilders, social innovators, and community partners continue to dedicate their time and focus to solving some of today’s most pressing problems. Click here to learn more about the CPA’s impact.