Past HELP Events

Fall Research Expo 2015

HELP’s Fall Research Expo took place on November 4, 2015 at UBC Robson Square. The most important day in HELP’s annual calendar, this year’s Expo provided participants with an opportunity to learn more from, and dialogue with, HELP faculty and research staff including Kimberly Schonert-Reichl, Paul Kershaw, Brenda Poon, Martin Guhn, Lori Irwin and HELP’s Aboriginal Steering Committee.  We were also pleased to include panel presentations by Kiley Hamlin, Associate Professor in the UBC Department of Psychology, and Maria LeRose, Program Consultant with the Dalai Lama Center for Peace and Education.

In addition to morning panel presentations, we hosted an afternoon workshop series. The workshops provided an opportunity for participants to increase their knowledge and exchange ideas in a facilitated learning environment with faculty, affiliates and researchers on a variety of HELP’s current research and tools.

Presentation materials, including inks to particular videos and some slide decks, are available here. Please join our mailing list, follow us on Twitter and/or friend us on Facebook to ensure you receive updates and information about Fall Expo 2016 as it becomes available.

Mini Fall Expo in the Comox Valley, November 19, 2015

The Comox Valley Early Years Centre, Comox Valley Success By 6, School District #71 and the Comox Valley Child Development Association were pleased to sponsor a Mini Fall Expo, which took place in Courtney on November 19, 2015.

Researchers from the Human Early Learning Partnership presented as part of an interactive day filled with emerging research about policy and practice to support child well-being. Through a mix of keynote presentations and small group sessions, participants explored the research, engaged in dialogue about its implications, and planned to act to further the child well-being initiatives in our island communities.

HELP May Roadshow 2015

HELP staff and faculty hit the road in May with stops in Prince George, Prince Rupert, Terrace and Kelowna. HELP researchers and staff focused on HELP’s work exploring ‘the differences that make a difference’ in children’s development. Roadshow events provided an opportunity to learn more about population-level data collection in BC using both the Early and Middle Years Development Instruments (EDI and MDI). In addition, presentations focused on what we have learned about children’s development and the impacts this knowledge has had, the importance of middle childhood and social-emotional learning, and early screening initiatives in BC communities.

The Roadshow is a continuation of the legacy of HELP's founding director, Dr. Clyde Hertzman, who focused on working with BC communities to increase collaborative efforts toward positive change for children and families. The Roadshow was coordinated in partnership with Success By 6 BC.

HELP and Success by 6 Winter Webinar Series: Research In Action

January 27, 2014  10:00AM to 11:00AM
What’s the Difference? Using Critical Difference to Understand EDI Data - Watch the video on YouTube

February 26, 2015  1:00PM-2:00PM
Bringing Knowledge Full Circle: Aboriginal Children’s EDI Data and Community Stories - Watch the video on YouTube

April 2, 2015  1:00PM – 2:30PM
Exploring HELP’s Socio-economic Status Index - Watch the video on YouTube

April 23, 2015  3:00PM – 4:00PM
Children's Well-Being in their Middle Years: New Research Highlights - Watch the video on YouTube


Fall Research Expo 2014

HELP’s Fall Research Expo 2014 took place on Wednesday, October 15, 2014.

This year’s event focused on the future and our new Human Development Program of Research (HDPR). The day kicked off with an overview of the HDPR by Dr. Kimberly Schonert-Reichl and the schedule was rounded out by keynote and Pecha Kucha presentations by HELP Faculty and Staff, including Dr. Lori G. Irwin, who will showcase the CHeq pilot project, and Dr. Paul Kershaw, who speak about Building Political Will for a Better Generational Deal.

In addition to presentations, and in response to feedback from past events, we built in additional networking opportunities. Specifically, our afternoon networking session - entitled What Do You Want to Focus On? -  allowed participants to engage with presenters and ask questions and learn more about a particular topic in a smaller, less formal session.

Please view our registration trailer to learn more about the day. Planning is already underway for our 2015 Expo. Please join our mailing list, follow us on Twitter and/or friend us on Facebook to ensure you receive updates and information as it becomes available.

Dialogue Series Inspired by Clyde Hertzman Jan31-May 29

This cross-Canada dialogue series is being held in memory of Clyde Hertzman’s contributions to the field
of population health and to mark the 20th anniversary of the publication of the landmark book, “Why are
some people healthy and others not?”

These dialogues will feature science, policy and practice leaders from Canada and around the globe who will be engaging in critical debates about the major social health inequalities of our time and bringing to light the actions that we can take as a society to address them.

January 31st, Vancouver - Early Years 2014 Conference
A keynote lecture at this national conference, given by Dr. Tom Boyce, a long-time friend and colleague of
Clyde’s, will explore a topic that Clyde pioneered: biological embedding.

February 6th, Toronto (Accessible through webinar) - From Cell to Society: Creating a world where all children can succeed
The day will focus on what Clyde called “the archeology of biological embedding” – the interconnections
from cell through to society.

April 28 - 30th, Vancouver - International Health Data Linkage Conference
Dr. Fiona Stanley will focus her keynote lecture on the need for a world-class child development monitoring
system in Canada to unearth inequities and to more deeply understand the cause of these inequities.

May 7 – 9th, Montreal - QICSS International Conference
A panel featuring Dr. Michael Kobor, HELP, Olle Lundberg, Centre for Health Equity Studies (Stockholm) and Marni Brownell, Manitoba Centre for Health Policy, and a roundtable discussion about international perspectives on social policy and health inequalities.

May 26 – 29th, Toronto - Canadian Public Health Association Conference
A panel that will highlight cutting edge research in proportionate universality and how public health is applying this work in practice.

More information is available through the Canadian Institutes for Health Research.

Population Monitoring as a Strategy for Improved Early Child Development: progress and new challenges

This event was hosted at UBC on May 1, 2014 as part of the New Frontiers in Population Health toward Equity from the Start: Dialogue Series inspired by and in memory of Dr. Clyde Hertzman.  The cross-Canada series commemorates Dr. Clyde Hertzman and his contributions to the field of population health. 

This event was presented by Fiona Stanley is a Professor at the School of Paediatrics and Child Health, at the University of Western Australia. Professor Stanley’s presentation touched on the impact and legacy of Dr. Hertzman’s research and leadership in developing large scale child development monitoring systems around the world. Dr. Stanley is the founding Director of the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research in Australia.  A distinguished researcher trained in maternal and child health epidemiology and public health, Professor Stanley has spent her career researching the causes of major childhood illnesses and advocating for the needs of children and their families. She was a friend and colleague of Dr. Clyde Hertzman. 

HELP's Knowledge Translation team recorded video of this event. We are currently in the editing process. Please check back soon for a link to the video.

Middle Childhood Learning Summit: Children's Wellbeing. Their Rights.


Experiences in middle childhood (ages 6 to 12) have critical and long lasting effects on learning, health and wellbeing and are powerful predictors of adolescent adjustment and adult success. This summit was held on April 23rd, 2014 at UBC Robson Square in Vancouver. It focused on the rights of the child during this sensitive period in human development.

Many thanks to all those who attended this event! We brought together over 200 British Columbians working with and for children in their middle years to discuss the importance of a child rights approach in improving outcomes for children. The keynote presentations and hands-on workshops were enjoyed by government leaders and community practitioners alike. We hope this event encouraged everyone to adapt research priorities, policies and programming to reflect child rights in a more meaningful way.

For questions about this event or plans for future events please contact the Society for Children and Youth of BC:


2014 Webinars

In early 2014 we hosted a series of webinars that focused on some of the key factors that we know make a difference in early childhood development.  Each session was a 45 minute presentation by HELP researchers followed by a 15 minute question period. The webinars were recorded and are available to view using the links below:

February 11th, 3:15pm-4:45pm:


Lessons from 12 years of early childhood research: What makes a difference? Presented by HELP's Deputy Director, Joanne Schroeder.


February 19th, 1:30pm-3:00pm:


International Family Policy Comparisons: Why Canada lags behind.Presented by HELP's Senior Researcher, Lynell Anderson.


March 6th, 2:00pm-3:30pm:


Making Sense of Social Epigenetics.Presented by HELP's Associate Professor, Dr. Michael Kobor.


March 13th, 3:00pm-4:00pm:


The Middle Years Development Instrument. Presented by HELP's Dr. Kimberley Schonert-Reichl.



CIFAR Symposium Honours the Late Clyde Hertzman

The video recording from the webcast held on February 6, 2014 is available for a limited time. "From Cell to Society: Creating a world where all children can succeed" was presented by the Canadian Institutue for Advanced Research (CIFAR). Chaired by Alan Bernstein, President and CEO of CIFAR, this symposium brought together the extended CIFAR community to continue the work that HELP's founding director, Dr. Clyde Hertzman began. From Cell to Society explores the archeology of biological embedding – the layers and interconnections of development affected by experience – and pointed to ways in which the science can inform policies and interventions to give all children a better chance.

Clyde Hertzman was a long-serving senior fellow of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research. Over the course of 25 years, he contributed to four CIFAR programs, and was a driving force behind two programs – Successful Societies and Child & Brain Development – at the time of his death.


2014 Early Years Conference

The 2014 preconference day was presented by HELP and focused on early environments and social epigenetics: How experience gets under the skin. On January 30, 2014 over 180 participants gathered to explore the complex nature of the social, physical and biological environments that shape children’s development. The goal was to broaden our understanding of how children experience similar environments in unique ways. We discussed how we can promote the value of an inclusive approach in supporting the child, family and community.

Many of those who attended expressed a interest to have the presentation slides available on-line after the event. We hope these references below will be helpful to practitioners wishing to spread the news about what they have learned at this very valuable event.



HELP's 2013 Fall Research Expo

We are pleased to announce that over 280 people were in attendance for the most important day in HELP’s annual calendar. This year's event was held at UBC Robson Square in Vancouver on October 21st, 2013. New research findings were presented on the factors that can support and enhance the well-being of children in BC: from policy environments, to communities, to families. This full day event included several keynote presentations and hands-on workshops with researchers. More information on the event and a detailed program are available on our blog.


Social resilience: Creative responses to social change

On October 17th, 2013 the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR) invited three authors to UBC to share insights into questions presented in their new book, Social Resilience in the Age of Neoliberalism. HELP's Founding Director, Dr. Clyde Hertzman co-authored one of the chapters in this book. Event details can be found on our blog

HELPing Children and Families Thrive

HELP, Success By 6 and the Early Years Community Development Institute were pleased to offer a series of FREE workshops held at the University of British Columbia on June 5th and 6th, 2013:

Spring Research Seminar Series

Chilliwack:  May 21st, 2013 | 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Stz'uminus First Nation: April 12th, 2013 | 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Nanaimo: April 11th, 2013 | 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Nanaimo: April 8th, 2013 | 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Over 40 community members attended this full day event to hear from lead researchers and participate in workshops highlighting HELP’s most recent research. We took an in depth look at HELP’s work in collecting population level data on children in B.C., using both the Early and Middle Years Development Instruments (EDI and MDI).  The presentations focused on what we have learned about children’s development and the impacts this knowledge has had. We also presented new results from the Middle Years Development Instrument (MDI), illustrating trends, and demonstrating the value of linking Kindergarten, Grade 4 and Grade 7 results.

Afternoon Workshops Included:

1.    Why Do Community Systems Matter?  We explored the interaction of environments that impact children’s development and examined how you can make a difference locally.  The focus was on an asset based approach to change.

  2.    What Does the MDI Tell Us? We took an in depth look at results from the MDI and an overview of the valuable information that is gathered using this instrument. We learned how it can be used to make a difference in B.C. communities.

Fall Research Exposition 2012

October 24, 2012 | 10:30 am – 4:30 pm
UBC Vancouver, BC

The focus for the event was on the future, highlighting emerging child development research at HELP including:

The full day event comprised of a morning keynote session, hosted by Dr. Clyde Hertzman, which explored the three research streams.  It continued with a number of afternoon workshops on HELP research topics, offering participants an opportunity to examine the research streams in more depth, exchange ideas and build skills.

Please click here to access presentation videos, pictures and other materials from this event.

International Child Rights Monitoring Symposium

Thursday, January 12, 2012 | 9:30 am – 11:30 am
Michael Smith Laboratories, 2185 East Mall, UBC Vancouver

The symposium featured an introduction by Dr. Clyde Hertzman, Director, HELP and a presentation by Dr. Ziba Vahgri, Director, International Research & Initiatives Program, HELP. It included an introduction to, and demonstration of, a new Child Rights Monitoring tool developed by HELP and international partners including UNICEF and the World Health Organization.

Fall Research Exposition: 10 Years of Insight - Connecting the Dots

October 26, 2011 | 1:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Life Sciences Centre - 2350 Health Sciences Mall, UBC

10 Years of Insight - Connecting the Dots connected neuroscience, to child development in B.C., to family policy. This cell to society perspective has significantly contributed to our understanding of the importance of the early years. We explored how HELP’s research has been - and will continue to be - used to improve children’s and families' lives.

Please click here to access presentation videos, posters, pictures and other materials from this event.