Family Violence Prevention Program National Guidelines 2018-2019

Table of contents

1. Introduction

These guidelines provide information for the delivery of the Family Violence Prevention Program (FVPP). The guidelines set out the delivery requirements and, where relevant, standards for funding recipients who have entered into a funding agreement with the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (DIAND) which is also known as the Department of Indigenous Services Canada (DISC). Potential Funding Recipients (i.e., applicants) may also find these guidelines useful as an additional source of information.

This document will be in effect as of April 1, 2018 and replaces the Social Programs National Manual 2017-2018.

This document is to be read in conjunction with the signed funding agreement, and

Where DISC has entered into an agreement with a province or territory, the obligations set out in the agreements are to be read first and take precedence over the delivery requirements and standards of the FVPP as explained in this document.

2. Objective

The objective of the FVPP is to improve the safety and security of Indigenous women, children and families.

The program has two components that support this objective:

Shelter Operations: funding for the day-to-day operations of a network of shelters that provide services for women and children living on reserve in provinces and in Yukon.

Prevention Initiatives: funding for community-driven prevention projects such as public awareness campaigns, conferences, workshops, stress and anger management seminars, support groups, and community needs assessments on- and off-reserve.

To support program objectives, The FVPP also provides funding to the National Aboriginal Circle Against Family Violence to provide a national coordinating role by supporting shelters and their staff through training forums, gatherings, the development and distribution of resource materials, and collaboration with key partners.

Further information on program activities is provided in Section #6 – Activities.

3. Expected outcomes

The expected outcome of the program is:

Men, women and children are safe.

The expected outcome noted here applies to the Department's social programming generally. While this expected outcome is an overarching objective of the FVPP, program-specific expected outcome are currently in development. Any revisions will be incorporated as necessary into future updates to this document and Data Collection Instruments (DCIs), etc..

4. Funding recipients

A funding recipient is an individual or entity that has met the eligibility criteria of the program and has signed a funding agreement with DISC to deliver an initiative (program, service or activity).

Recipient eligibility

The following entities are eligible to receive FVPP funding:

Eligible Funding Recipients Core Shelter Operations Prevention
Councils of First Nation Bands recognized by the Government of Canada Eligible Eligible
Tribal Councils Eligible Eligible
Provinces Eligible  
Yukon Territory Eligible  
First Nations authority, board, committee or other entity approved by Chief and Council Eligible Eligible
Incorporated sheltersFootnote 1 Eligible Eligible
First Nation Child and Family Services Family Violence Prevention Program Agencies or Societies Eligible Eligible
Indigenous communities and organizations (First Nations, Métis and Inuit) off-reserve   Eligible
National Aboriginal Circle Against Family Violence (NACAFV)   Eligible

Eligibility of landless Bands and non-reserve communities to receive Family Violence Prevention Program funding

The following is a list of land-less Bands and non-reserve communities that may be eligible to receive funding for Family Violence Prevention Program supports and services.

  • Kitcisakik - Canton de Hamon
  • Long Point First Nation - Winneway
  • Pakua Shipi - Saint Augustin
  • MaïganAkik - Barriere Lake
  • Aroland
  • Nibinamik
  • Marcel Colomb Cree - Lynn Lake
  • Mathias Colomb Cree Nation - Granville Lake
  • O-Pipon-Na-Piwin Cree Nation - South Indian Lake
  • War Lake First Nation - Ilford
  • Fox Lake First Nation - Gillam
  • Ocean Man
  • Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation (ACFN) - Ft. Chipewyan
  • Mikisew Cree First Nation - Fort Chipewyan
  • Little Red River Cree Nation (LRRCN) - Garden River
  • Lubicon Lake Band - Little Buffalo
  • Tsay Keh Dene First Nation (Ingenika Band)
  • Old Massett Village Council
  • Lax Kw'alaams
  • Iskut
  • Lake Babine Nation
  • Wet'suwet'en First Nation - Bromon Lake
  • Whe-La-La-U

5. Program recipients (clients)

Program recipients (may also be referred to as clients) are persons or groups that receive the benefit of services and supports delivered through the FVPP. Program recipients are the target population to benefit from and are eligible to receive services from the program.

Members of the landless bands and non-reserve communities listed in Section 4 are eligible to receive services from the program.

For the purposes of providing services and support through the Family Violence Prevention Program, "ordinarily resident on reserve" means that an individual:

Students registered full-time in a post-secondary education or training program and who are in receipt of federal, band or Aboriginal organization education or training support funding continue to be considered ordinarily resident on reserve if:

Emergency supports may be provided in accordance with provincial and territorial guidelines. For the purposes of the Family Violence Prevention Program, First Nation residents in the Yukon are considered to be "ordinarily resident on reserve" and are therefore eligible to receive services from the program.

6. ActivitiesFootnote 2

The program's activities are categorized according to components:

Shelter Operations

The FVPP provides funding for the day-to-day operations of a network of shelters that provide services for women and children who are ordinarily resident on reserve in provinces and in the Yukon.Footnote 3

In order for a Funding Recipient to continue to receive shelter operating funding from DISC, a shelter must be operating as a family violence shelter for women, children and families. These shelters should therefore not be operating as a temporary or long-term housing solution (e.g. for youth, elders, the homeless, community members).Funding for shelter operations is categorized according to primary and secondary core shelter operations. Primary core shelter operations outline the basic services and supports that shelters are required to provide. Secondary core shelter operations outline the additional services and supports that shelters may provide.

Primary shelter operations include the following:

  • a safe and welcoming residential environment, with appropriate space for children;
  • secured shelter, both inside and outside the shelter, which includes a fence, alarm system, surveillance camera, etc.;
  • secured file cabinets to maintain confidential documentation and case files;
  • training to assist staff in delivering or providing referrals for the following services:
    • programming and counselling (group and individual) for women, children, youth and men (for both perpetrators off-site and victims either on-site or off-site) in the areas of treatment and intervention (counseling for individuals, children, abusers, groups, mental health/illness, suicide intervention, referral for addictions);
    • culturally sensitive services;
    • awareness;
    • self-development; and
    • children's programs.
  • crisis intervention (including a 24 hour/7 days a week crisis telephone line or a peak-time crisis telephone line when a 24 hour/7 days a week service already exists in the area);
  • individual case planning, referral and advocacy to access other supports, systems, and resources (social, legal, medical, etc.);
  • nutritious meals and safe food preparation;
  • transportation; and
  • data collection and tracking for administrative and evaluative purposes.

Secondary shelter operations include the following:

  • verification of post-shelter arrangements and referrals before departure;
  • community education and awareness-raising (for service providers and the general public);
  • development of networks, collaborations and protocols with other partners (other shelters, federal departments, provinces, municipalities, Aboriginal community organizations, First Nations Child and Family Services agencies, addiction treatment centers, health services, medical agencies, healing and health promotion, schools, police and RCMP, legal aid, social assistance agencies, social housing, charitable and not-for-profit organizations, volunteers); and
  • collaboration at the community level (e.g. between community health and shelter managers, etc.).

Prevention Projects

The FVPP provides funding for community-driven prevention projects such as public awareness campaigns, conferences, workshops, stress and anger management seminars, support groups, and community needs assessments on and off-reserve.

The eligible prevention project activities are set out in the approved work plan/proposal as referenced in the funding recipient's signed funding agreement.

Prevention projects include the following activities:

  • Treatment and Intervention: individual or group counseling to help women, children, youth and men dealing with family violence and related issues (residential school trauma, grief, substance abuse and addictions, mental health illness, suicide intervention) for the duration of the prevention project only.
  • Culturally Sensitive Services: elder and traditional teachings, family healing, healing circles and traditional healing, inner healing, residential school survivor support.
  • Awareness: alternatives to violence, anger management, bullying, characteristics of abuser, cycle of violence, men's programs, outreach, research projects (including collecting data such as inventories, literature reviews, training materials and data for statistics, conducting surveys, and evaluating treatment protocols and models for service delivery), safety planning.
  • Self-Development: financial management skills, healthy parenting, healthy relationship, healthy sexuality, life skills, social skills development for youth and adults (women and men).

Delivery methods of prevention projects include:

  • Seminars, Workshops and Conferences: project must demonstrate that the event will achieve an increase in knowledge, skill development, networking, or information sharing on a subject related to preventing family violence in Aboriginal communities.
  • Traditional Delivery Methods: to address family violence in a way that is responsive to community needs such as healing circles, traditional healing, cultural camp, elder and traditional teachings.
  • Public Outreach and Education Campaigns: to develop, produce, deliver and present to an audience printed or published materials to raise awareness and educate them on a subject related to family violence in Aboriginal communities.
  • Training: to identify, prevent and manage family violence for existing community service providers and staff, such as trainers, child protection workers, community health representatives, nurses, social workers, teachers, other professionals and para-professionals, law enforcement personnel and community leaders. Also includes developing training and resource materials or models for use in Aboriginal communities.
  • Community Needs Assessments: To identify Aboriginal community needs and develop a strategic plan to address family violence in the community, including all potential partners.
  • Community Program Development: To deliver community projects that are short term and innovative, build on, and strengthen existing community services or resources, and respond constructively to family violence in Aboriginal communities.

7. Proposal process

Prevention projects – whether on- or off- reserve - are proposal-based. On-reserve prevention activities are funded through DISC Regions while off-reserve activities are funded through DISC Headquarters.


Funding for prevention projects on- reserve is determined based on regionally-established proposal processes and guidelines and, therefore, may vary from Region to Region. Please contact your DISC Regional office for more information.

As proposals for on-reserve prevention projects are approved by DISC Regional Offices or another entity such as a First Nations authority, board, committee or other entity approved by Chief and Council., available funds may be transferred to the First Nation's (or other eligible Funding Recipient's) Funding Agreement.


Organizations located off-reserve that provide programs or services to First Nations, Inuit or Métis that are interested in applying for FVPP funding for prevention projects can answer the program's annual call for proposals. Information about the annual call can be found on the program's website. The call for proposals for the following fiscal year usually comes out in late Winter with an application deadline coming about six to ten weeks later.

Multiple Funding Sources/Partners

Generally, prevention projects – whether on- or off reserve - that are designed to leverage partnerships and/or additional funding are preferred because they can have a greater impact or demonstrate greater effectiveness in the community or in multiple communities.

Please note that some prevention activities may also be funded by another federal government department (for example, Health Canada or Public Safety Canada). A Funding Recipient may apply for and receive funds from multiple partners in order to increase its total project budget. Funding recipients must ensure and demonstrate that funds from multiple partners are supporting different activities under the same project.

For example, a Funding Recipient may submit to DISC a Family Violence Prevention Program proposal for a prevention project on healthy parenting with a request for $15,000 to cover the costs of developing outreach and educational materials and submit to Health Canada a proposal with a request for $10,000 for the same project, but to cover different costs such as capacity building. In this case, both departments are providing funding under the same project, but covering different activities.

8. Expenditures

Funding Recipients and Potential Funding Recipients (i.e., applicants) are encouraged to review the sections below on eligible expenditures and ineligible expenditures

Eligible ExpendituresFootnote 4

Eligible Expenditures Core Shelter Operations PreventionFootnote 5 National Aboriginal Circle Against Family Violence
Staff salaries and benefits Eligible Eligible Eligible
Professional development, including:
  • membership and conference fees
  • tutoring functions (e.g. online training and other professional development opportunities)
Eligible Eligible Eligible
Board and committee operations (where applicable) Eligible Eligible Eligible
Direct Client costs, for example:
  • food
  • bedding, towels, soaps, etc.
  • personal incidentals (e.g. diapers, clothing and hygiene)
  • transportation to and from shelter
  • child care and car seats
  • programming and related supplies
  • recreation
Operations, minor maintenance, upgrading and repairs of facilities,Footnote 6 including:
  • utilities (includes garbage and snow removal)
  • appliances, furniture and equipment
  • computer and internet access
  • library and resources
  • upgrading (e.g. wheelchair accessible)
  • off-hour emergency services
  • security (e.g. fences, cameras, alarm system, file cabinets with locks)
  • Client needs assessments
  • data collection
  • post-shelter arrangements and referrals.
Overhead administration costs not exceeding 15% of the total contributionFootnote 7, including:
  • payroll administration fees
  • office supplies and equipment
  • telephone and IT support services
  • human resource services and recruitment.
Eligible Eligible Eligible
Crisis Line Eligible    
Staff transportation and travel (using established rates) Eligible Eligible Eligible
Client transportation (e.g., taxis, use of First Nation owned/leased vehicles) Eligible    
Costs for prevention activities, training forums, workshops, outreach (including instructional and information materials, facilitator per diem) Eligible Eligible Eligible
Professional and Paraprofessional services Eligible Eligible Eligible
Legal services fees and costs Eligible Eligible Eligible
Insurance Eligible   Eligible
Audits, monitoring, evaluation and policy development Eligible Eligible  

Ineligible expenditures

The following items are not eligible expenditures:

  • capital costs (except minor maintenance);
  • feasibility studies for shelters, crisis centers or transition homes;
  • retroactive funding or formulation funding;
  • repayment of personal or community debts;
  • for-profit initiatives and investments;
  • costs related to the purchase, ownership, and maintenance of vehicles; and
  • shelters operating as temporary or long-term housing solutions (e.g. for youth, elders, the homeless, community members).

Major Repairs and Renovations

The Family Violence Prevention Program does not fund the construction, renovation or major repair of family violence prevention shelters. Funding Recipients should apply to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) for funding for major renovation projects through the Shelter Enhancement Program.

CMHC provides capital for the construction, renovation and major repairs of women's shelters through its Shelter Enhancement Program (SEP). For more information, please visit CMHC's website or call CMHC at: 1-800-668-2642.

Prevention Project Completion Date

Expenditures incurred after the project completion date, as set out in the approved project proposal, are ineligible for funding from the FVPP.

Therefore, all prevention project expenditures must be incurred by the project completion date, as set out in the approved project proposal. For example, salaries can only be paid for the duration of the project and cannot support permanent positions.

Ongoing costs, such as long-term treatment or counselling services, must be incurred by the project completion date. However, a Funding Recipient can refer Clients to other services. Funding Recipients with long-term service considerations can apply for multi-year funding.

9. Funding

Maximum amount of funding

The maximum amount of funding to be provided to a funding recipient in a fiscal year is set out in the funding agreement signed by the funding recipient.

Stacking limits and duplication of funding

A Funding Recipient is required to declare any and all sources of funding related to the Family Violence Prevention Program, including funding that is expected to be received or that is received, including all funding from the Government of Canada and from provincial, territorial, and municipal governments. Annual financial reporting must show all sources of funding received.

Provision for repayment will be made when DISC's contribution is in excess of $100,000 and when funding from all sources exceeds eligible expenditures. Funding Recipients must provide DISC with information showing the amount to be repaid and the basis for calculating that amount. The reimbursement should be proportionate to DISC's contribution, expressed as a percentage of the total funding obtained by the Funding Recipient from all government sources for that program.

To complement FVPP's shelter operating funds, a shelter can become a registered charity and benefit from charitable donations. Any charitable donations received by the registered shelter are not included in its stacking limits. For more information, refer to "Applying for Registration" on the Canada Revenue Agency website.

Unexpended (Surplus) and Redirected Funding

For information on managing unexpended/redirected funding please consult Departmental personnel for more information. Contact information is found in section 15 in this document.

10. Reporting requirements and monitoring and oversight activities

The reporting requirements (program and financial reports) and their respective due dates are listed in the recipient's funding agreement, and details on these requirements are available in the Reporting Guide.

All funding recipient reporting requirements are subject to monitoring and oversight activities to determine the accuracy of the information provided to DISC.

To support monitoring and oversight activities funding recipients are required to collect and keep information regarding the expenses and management of a shelter and/or conducting prevention activities.Footnote 8

Examples of required documents include the following:

11. Personal information

DISC's collection and use of personal information and other records for the purposes of program monitoring activities will be limited to what is necessary to ensure program delivery requirements are met.

DISC is responsible for all information and records in its possession. The confidentiality of the information will be managed by DISC in accordance with the Privacy Act and other related policies on privacy.

Funding recipients are responsible for the protection of personal information per the privacy legislation, regulations and/or policies that govern them up to the point that it is transferred to DISC.

Funding recipients shall develop and implement bylaws, policies and procedures to protect personal information, collected in the course of complying with the program delivery requirements, from unauthorized access, use, or disclosure.

12. Accountability

DISC is committed to providing assistance to recipients in order for them to effectively carry out obligations set out in this document and funding agreements.

DISC has a responsibility to:

Funding recipients must deliver the programs in accordance with the provisions of their funding agreement and the program delivery requirements outlined in this document while also ensuring that the necessary management controls are in place to manage funding and monitor activities. Funding recipients are required to exercise due diligence when approving expenditures and must ensure that such expenditures are in accordance with the eligible expenditures set out in this document. Funding recipients must ensure that program administrators are properly trained and possess the skills and knowledge to deliver the programs.

13. Official languages

Funding recipients must provide access to services in both English and French where there is significant demand and Part IV of the Official Languages Act is applicable.

14. Related links

For further program information, please visit our website at: Department of Indigenous Services Canada Family Violence Prevention Program.

15. Contact information

The Regional Offices' coordinates can be found on the Regional Offices page.

You can also write to: or

Date modified: