Indigenous Community Support Fund: needs-based funding application

Needs-based funding to help Indigenous communities and organizations prevent, prepare and respond to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

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About the process

On August 12, 2020, the Government of Canada announced an additional $305 million for the Indigenous Community Support Fund. It is being distributed through a combination of:

Indigenous peoples and organizations can also access other supports through Canada's COVID-19 Economic Response Plan.

Who can apply

All organizations must be incorporated.


For needs-based COVID-19 support funding, applicants are asked to submit their applications by November 30, as funding must be disbursed by Indigenous Services Canada by December 31, 2020. The department has put in place a streamlined review process so that applications are reviewed quickly and efficiently.

Applicants are encouraged to send their applications for additional resources when needs arise, as applications will be assessed for eligibility and prioritized on a case-by-case needs-basis. Applications will continue to be accepted and evaluated until identified funds are exhausted.

How to apply

Email your application to:

Region Email address
British Columbia
Northwest Territories

Please do not send links to files in the Cloud as we cannot access them. Contact us by email and we will help find an alternative.

Only applications submitted electronically will be considered. We will confirm receipt of your application and may contact you for further clarification.

Applications will be assessed against the selection criteria below once they are received.

Selection criteria

Application assessment criteria

  • COVID-19 risk:
    • is there risk of COVID-19 in the community or population that needs to be addressed (for example, an outbreak has been declared in the community, or there is a high rate of transmission in your organization or community's urban area)?
    • how will the proposed activities address urgent, immediate community needs to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak and containment efforts?
  • Readiness:
    • are there any obstacles to starting your project?
    • are staff and resources available?
    • has your community or organization provided similar services in the past and could it begin providing expanded or enhanced services to address COVID-19 issues immediately?
  • Human impact:
    • does the project directly address the impacts of COVID-19 on Indigenous populations (such as isolation, transportation, food security, safe places, health and safety) while preventing, protecting, mitigating, responding to, or recovering from the pandemic?
    • how many peoples will be impacted by these activities and who are the participants for each activity (for example, community members, women, youth, Elders, homeless individuals)
    • how will the needs of the most vulnerable be prioritized and addressed?
    • does the project offer direct, meaningful benefit to the recipients?
  • Prior funding:
    • has your community or organization already received governmental funding for the identified COVID-19 need?

Meeting these criteria does not guarantee funding. Applications will be assessed for eligibility and prioritized on a case-by-case basis. The number of approved applications will depend on a number of factors including the number of applications submitted and total available funding.

Examples of activities that can be funded

Reasonable COVID-19-related activities may be eligible including, but not limited to:

  • measures to address food insecurity
  • educational and other support for children
  • mental health and emergency
  • perimeter security for the community
  • personal protective equipment
  • supports to update, review or activate pandemic plans
  • additional hand washing stations
  • signage to reinforce social distancing consistent with local public health guidance
  • plexiglass barriers for distancing or partition
  • cleaning supplies and sanitizers
  • other activities related to supporting COVID-19 preparedness and response measures

Project costs

  • Overhead administrative costs (for example, supplies, IT equipment, rent) cannot exceed 15% of the direct project costs
    • For example, $50,000 in direct costs can request up to $7,500 in administration costs for a total project cost of $57,500
  • Project expenses must be incurred by the project completion date, as set out in the approved project application, and no later than March 31, 2021
    • For example, salaries can only be paid for the duration of the project and cannot be used for permanent positions

Related links

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