CUP: Community Unbound Project

The Community Unbound Project (CUP), is a collaborative project between Tidwell Social Work Services & Consulting, Inc., Boise State University, and the community at large,  This project was originated by Restore Missions. Inc. and the primary goal is to promote the awareness and dignity of the different cultures represented in Idaho, and to foster cross cultural interactivity in a way that would promote peace and harmony in our community. The project started with the the African Culinary Heritage event, and last year, we celebrated the  Arab World in Idaho.

This event speaks to the mission of TSWC in creating a climate of inclusion, diversity, and respect for our diverse client groups, students and the wider community by engaging in critical conversation on academic and community issues of concern. We have being highly successful in bringing together participants from many segments of the community  including newly resettled refugees, students from across the world and interested members of the campus and wider community.

The event speaks to at least three specific goals of TSWC :

  • CUP is dedicated to providing venues for cross-cultural education and contact that promotes understanding, healing and community building in the city of Boise, Idaho.
  • Food security and acculturation are crucial for refugees and CUP specifically focuses on that issue.
  • The conference is a collaboration between Tidwell, Boise State faculty, community members and other agencies that serve refugees and underrepresented groups in Idaho. 4) This event intends to enhance positive race and human relations in the region



 The proceeds from this first event were contributed to three aspiring entrepreneurs who wanted to begin their business at the Boise International Market.


The Event

The event occurred on the coldest, iciest Saturday night of the winter. Yet, despite this challenge we enjoyed a sold out crowd and sadly had to turn people away. This was a multicultural gathering of people for dinner, prepared by a variety of chefs from around the world, with global entertainment offered by people living right here in Boise, Idaho.


Three grants were awarded to aspiring entrepreneurs who have since opened their businesses at the Boise International Market. Additionally, one woman who prepared food for the Taste of the Nations at the Conference has since opened a restaurant in Pocatello, Idaho.

JBR’s BBQ (Boise International Market)

 The restaurant is open 7 days a week at the Boise International market. Drop by and try it!

“The Grand Opening was a very powerful and gratifying realization of my business plan and overall vision for my business—I would not have been able to open for the Boise International Market’s Grand Opening without the African Culinary Heritage Committee grant.”  Ryan Hansen, (208) 585-1065,

C3 Hair & Beauty Supplies (Boise International Market)

“With the long exhausting days of brainstorming, and extended sleepless nights [I] am proud to say I launched my business on April 23 of 2015.  I would like to extend my gratitude to the organizers of the African Culinary Heritage event and Tidwell Social Work Services for making it possible for me to open my own business.”  Charlotte Chabuka, (208)863-9008,

Nubian Market (Boise International Market)

“…my desire is to be self-sufficient and a role model to my children, as well as encouraging and empowering other women on believing in themselves and building self-confidence.”  Khamisa Fadul, (208) 409-5834,

ARAB WORLD IN IDAHO: October, 2015

This was  conference at Boise State and evening cultural celebration uniting scholars, local Arab and international chefs, farmers, community practitioners and activists as well as students to examine the place of food in cultural interchange, social integration, economic growth and mental well-being with a particular focus on the refugee and immigrant community..

 The proceeds from this second event was donated HROC.



  • Community Unbound Project
  • Boise State Planning Committee
  • Boise State Saudi Students Club
  • Restore Missions
  • Boise State Anthropology Department
  • Boise State School of Nursing
  • The Blue Review
  • Afro-Black Student Alliance
  • MEChA