Anti-Racism Anti-Hate Grant
- The Ontario government is providing $1.6 million for this program for eligible organizations, including community-based and not-for-profit organizations. Grants are for $40,000 over two years for independent projects, or $100,000 over two years for partnerships between two or more organizations. More information available here.
Deadline: November 15, 2021 at 11:59 pm.
Ontario Tourism Recovery Program
- The province has confirmed the $100 million Ontario Tourism Recovery Program will launch in mid-October. The Tourism Recovery Program will support for-profit tourism businesses in the attraction, accommodation, and leisure travel sectors that help drive employment and visitors to their regions. Eligible businesses include hotels, inns, resorts, boat tours, ski hills, distilleries, hunting and fishing camps, airlines, motor coaches, live performance venues, cinemas, drive-in theatres, amusement parks, museums, and Indigenous attractions. Applications will open on October 13, 2021. Full details available here.
However, this is far from enough as the Government states that even meeting eligibility requirements does not guarantee funding. Applications will be assessed competitively using funding and assessment criteria. When I raised this issue in the legislature about businesses who are being left behind because they are not eligible for this support, the Government simply had no answer. They also could not confirm whether there would be another round of small business grants coming out soon, which means they still have no plans to support our small business owners and their employees. I have a small business workgroup that I meet with regularly to raise these concerns. If you are interested in joining, please email [email protected] and share with your contacts.
United Way Community PROGRAM Grants
- Applications are currently being accepted for Community PROGRAM Grants. United Way is looking for impactful programs and initiatives in 13 different but connected issue areas that will provide supports in Peel Region, the City of Toronto and/or York Region that reach and serve people who live in poverty or address the underlying causes of poverty through a systems approach.
Application Deadline: October 15, 2021 by 5:00 pm
Public Space Fellowship Program at The Bentway
- Calling emerging urbanists, public space aficionados, and creative placemakers! The Bentway is seeking two emerging professionals for their 2022 Public Space Fellowship, which will focus on the upcoming spring/summer season, “The Street: A Civic Stage.” Application deadline is October 24. Full details here.
Toronto Waterfront Artist Residency
- The Waterfront BIA and Waterfront Toronto are seeking applications for an exciting Artist Residency opportunity. The 12-month residency will start in December 2021 with a period of community integration and research, and will culminate with the implementation of projects during 2022, which will coincide with ArtworxTO. Artists will have the opportunity to engage with current projects led by the BIA and Waterfront Toronto, as well as connect with members of the local community, in order to develop innovative and compelling art projects that are relevant to Toronto’s waterfront. This opportunity is open to all professional artists or artist teams in the Greater Toronto Area who have experience in art presented in the public realm and community-engaged art.
Submission Deadline is October 27, 2021. Full details here.
MusiCounts Band Aid Music Program for Schools
- The MusiCounts Band Aid Program provides under-resourced schools with grants of up to $15,000 worth of musical instruments, equipment, and resources. With the recent cuts to music programs in our schools, this provides an opportunity to revitalize music education.
Applications are now open with an Early Bird Deadline of October 19, 2021 and Final Deadline of November 25, 2021. Learn more about the program here.
Education Funding Opportunities
- Annual Studentship for Mental Health Program
Mental Health Research Canada is providing funding opportunities for university and college students. Click here for more information.
- Tuition Programs for Foster Kids
Are you a current or former foster kid? Did you always want to go to college or university but money got in the way? Click here for participating schools.
Newcomer Youth Green Economy Project
- This is a free program funded by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada that aims to help newcomer youth (18-29 years of age) enter the Canadian environmental job market. The Fall 2021 registration page is now open to applications from eligible residents. During the five-month program, participants are provided with job search and corporate culture training, networking opportunities, project placements with an industry mentor, career coaching, virtual field trips and, resume and cover-letter targeting. Visit the website here for more information.
Ontario Announces Additional $49 Million for Festivals, Events
- The Ontario government is investing $49 million to festivals and events across the province to help the tourism and culture industries that were disproportionately affected through the pandemic.
Most of the money is going to 439 festivals and events through the Reconnect Festival and Event Program (known as Celebrate Ontario prior to the COVID-19 pandemic), developed to help organizers adapt to public health measures, through steps such as hosting virtual or drive-through events. Organizations can put the funding toward programming and production, marketing, mobile applications, website development, and implementing health and safety measures.
The Celebrate Ontario Blockbuster program is getting $6 million to help municipalities and organizations host large-scale events that draw a lot of tourists.
The government says that before the pandemic, every dollar of provincial funding through the program resulted in nearly $21 of visitor spending. More information here.
Tourism and events are a huge part of the Spadina-Fort York economy in downtown Toronto. While this funding is welcome news, I have heard concern from many event managers and suppliers about the one-time nature of this funding, as well as the trickle-down effect at play where suppliers and other organizations affected do not have direct access to funding and must wait for the festival organizers to decide where the funding goes.
This, the delayed nature of the Ontario Small Business Grant, and concerns around the increasing cost of commercial liability insurance are on top of mind as I advocate for small businesses in the riding.
Tourism Relief Fund
- The Government of Canada has launched the Tourism Relief Fund delivered through FedDev and FedNor Ontario. The Tourism Relief Fund supports tourism businesses and organizations to adapt their operations to meet public health requirements while investing in products and services to facilitate their future growth. This fund has a $500 million budget (ending March 31, 2023) and will focus on product development and destination development.
Contributions to businesses will be either non-repayable contributions up to $100,000 for up to 50% of eligible costs or fully repayable contributions up to $500,000 for up to 75% of eligible costs. The fund will offer a minimum of $50 million to support to Indigenous tourism initiatives and $15 million will be dedicated to national initiatives that support the advancement of national tourism priorities.
Eligible applicants include tourism organizations that cater mainly to visitors, including businesses, not-for-profit organizations, band councils or other Indigenous organizations and cooperatives. Applicants must meet at least one of the following criteria:
- Be a key supplier or operator in the visitor experience;
- Be part of a defined tourism cluster or a tourism dependent community, including supporting downtown cores; or
- Provide an anchor product or service in a tourism destination.
Culinary Tourism Alliance Launches Recovery Program
- The Culinary Tourism Alliance will be launching a unique recovery program aimed at supporting local businesses along the food tourism value chain and encouraging local travel within Ontario. This effort has been made possible with support from the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) and the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).
“The Great Taste of Ontario” is a campaign that will allow Ontarians to have the opportunity to discover new tastes and culinary delights, and also play an integral role in helping to rebuild the tourism industry in Ontario and support farmers and food and drink producers. Click here to learn more.
Canada Community Revitalization Fund
The Canada Community Revitalization Fund (CCRF) aims to help communities across Canada build and improve community infrastructure projects so they can rebound from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. With a national investment of $500 million over two years (ending March 31, 2023), the fund’s purpose is to support not-for-profit organizations, municipalities, Indigenous communities, and other community groups:
- Build new community infrastructure and revitalize existing assets
- Bring people back to public spaces safely as health measures ease
- Create jobs and stimulate local economies
The maximum contribution amount per project shall not exceed $750k and applications are strongly advised to be submitted by July 23, 2021. The fund will provide support for adapting and re-imagining / re-envisioning community spaces and maintaining accessibility standards so that they may safely be used by communities; and building or improving community infrastructure through the expansion, improvement or creation of community spaces to encourage Canadians to re-engage in and explore their communities and regions.
Four priorities have been identified for the CCRF: Downtown core and main street, outdoor space, green projects, and accessibility.
Application Process: There is a two-phase application process and assessment of applications will begin on July 23, 2021. Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit their applications by this date. Should there be remaining funding after the scheduled intake period, applications will continue to be accepted and funded on a continuous intake basis over the next two years or until such a time as the allocated funding is fully distributed. Click here to start your application.
Program for Indigenous Tourism in Ontario
- The Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO), in collaboration with Indigenous Tourism Ontario (ITO), and the Ontario Tourism Education Corporation (OTEC), are now accepting applications for A Three Fires Collaborative Quest Program - a program designed to support recovery and growth of the province’s Indigenous tourism workforce by building the labour pool and filling critical gaps within the industry.
To apply for the program as a potential employee, you must self-identify as Indigenous. You will have the opportunity to participate in training workshops facilitated by OTEC and you will be matched with tourism employers to complete a paid job placement.
To apply for the program as an employer, you must be a tourism business in Ontario, and you must be willing to support your new employee’s training and development in collaboration with the program. After completing the program you will be eligible to receive a wage subsidy of 30%, to a maximum of $3,000 per employee hired. To apply, click here.
Feedback on Ontario Tourism and Travel Small Business Support Grant
- The Ontario Tourism and Travel Small Business Support Grant was announced as part of the provincial government’s budget on March 24th. The grant offers tourism businesses the opportunity to apply for up to $20,000 in government grant support. It was recently opened for applications, but there haven’t been as many applications to the fund as expected. Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) wants to hear from you about whether you have applied for the grant, found yourself ineligible or learn of any other reasons why you’ve not been able to apply for the grant. This will help advise the government and work to ensure this much-needed funding gets to the businesses it was intended to support. Fill out the survey here.
Ontario Restaurant & Bar Support Fund
- The Fund is a private sector, registered not-for-profit organization established to help support as many Ontario food and beverage establishments as possible to reopen and recover from the financial setbacks of the pandemic. The Fund’s website has details for businesses wanting to become a corporate sponsor in support of the hospitality industry in Ontario. Visit www.RestaurantandBarSupportFund.ca. There is a GoFundMe page for patrons who wish to donate the cost of a night out (i.e. $25) in support of restaurants, bars and entertainment establishments: www.gofundme.com/ontario-restaurant-and-bar-support-fund.
Applying for an Ontario Arts Council Grant
Applying for an arts grant can be confusing or overwhelming. This spring, the Ontario Arts Council (OAC) is offering a series of webinars for Ontario-based artists and arts groups to learn the basics of applying for OAC funding. These webinars are for people who:
- have never applied for an arts grant before
- have an idea for an arts project in mind and are wondering how to apply for funding
- have applied for a grant before, but did not receive one
- want to learn more about what makes a successful application
If you already have a project in mind, and you have a specific question about your project, please email [email protected].
Art and Creative Skills Collective
An arts-based non-profit organization that offers free arts programming including story-writing, photography and film-making. Each program is designed to:
- Provide a safe space for youth to express themselves
- Build 21st-century skills among youth
- Give youth a platform to voice their opinion, artistically
- Deconstruct the stigma around mental illness
- Facilitate the development of positive and peer-learning support
- Help participants explore new career options and push their artistic inclination
- Support participants to work in a group setting and learn as a collective, fostering a deep sense of community
Visit the website.
Income Tax Assistance from CRA
- Tax filing may be more challenging for some people this year because of COVID-19. Filing a tax return is very important as it will let the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) determine if someone is eligible for certain benefit and credit payments, such as the Canada Child Benefit and the GST/HST credit. To help, the CRA will offer extra support to eligible individuals who have previously received support through the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program (CVITP). Individuals who need help completing their income tax return can call 1-833-995-2341.
CRA has already identified a number of eligible Canadians for this program. Those individuals will receive a personalized letter from the CRA with special information to help confirm that the calls they get are legitimate. This letter may come in the mail or be available through the CRA’s My Account portal. If you have received this letter, more information can be found by going to Canada.ca/tax-filing-assistance.
Starting this month through to October 2021, the CRA will call these individuals and help them by directing them to free virtual tax clinics or to online certified tax software products (including a number of free options) and, in certain situations, the CRA agent may be able to help individuals do their taxes over the phone.
To be eligible, and individual must have:
- a modest income;
- a simple tax situation; and
- used free tax clinics in the past or be eligible to use those clinics.
Pathways to Success Program for Indigenous Youth
- The Indigenous Professional Association of Canada’s Pathways to Success Program creates new opportunities for internships and summer work experiences for Indigenous youth (17-29) in Toronto, Winnipeg and Edmonton. They are currently looking for employers and Indigenous youth to participate in the program. For more information, visit the Pathways to Success website and signup page.
Private Refugee Support Network Ontario
- The Private Refugee Sponsor Network Ontario (The Network) is a volunteer-driven organization with 260 sponsors working together in response to community need, offering information, education, problem solving, and networking opportunities to enable private sponsors to better support refugee families. The Network is playing a significant role in resolving post-arrival issues, addressing potential sponsorship breakdown and creating relationships with settlement agencies that will lead to more effective service delivery in the sector. To learn more about the Private Refugee Sponsor Network Ontario, email [email protected], or visit the website at www.refugeesponsornet.ca.
Seniors Assistance Home Maintenance Program
- Do you need help around your home? This program enables older adults and individuals with disabilities to continue to live independently and safely in their own homes with support from brokered home maintenance workers. Services at reasonable prices include: lawn and garden maintenance, snow shovelling, light housekeeping, odd jobs around the house. For more information, visit www.tigp.org, email [email protected] or call 416-676-5993.
Toronto Rent Bank Program
Toronto Rent Bank Program is currently offering grants of up to $4,000 or 3 months of rent to eligible low-income households who are facing eviction. Toronto residents may be eligible for an interest-free rental arrears or rental deposit grant if they:
Live in Toronto
Pay market rent for a rental unit covered by the Residential Tenancies Act (RTA)
Fall within the low-income household eligibility requirement
Can satisfy other Toronto Rent Bank Program requirements, as required
Please call 416-397-RENT (7368) for more information on how to apply. Operating hours are Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. This program is offered by Neighbourhood Information Post and funded by the City of Toronto. Visit www.torontorentbank.ca for more details.