Application guidelines – Northern Aboriginal Broadcasting

Indigenous Languages and Cultures Program

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Objectives and expected results for the Indigenous Languages and Cultures Program

The objectives of the Indigenous Languages and Cultures Program (ILCP) are to:

  • strengthen Indigenous cultural identity and participation in Canadian society; and
  • support the efforts of Indigenous peoples to reclaim, revitalize, maintain and strengthen Indigenous languages and cultures.

Objectives and expected results for the Northern Aboriginal Broadcasting component

The Northern Aboriginal Broadcasting (NAB) component supports the production and distribution of culturally relevant Indigenous radio and television programming in the North. The objectives of NAB are to:

  • support the production of culturally relevant Indigenous programming;
  • facilitate the establishment and maintenance of production facilities;
  • ensure availability of a significant amount of radio and television programming;
  • contribute to the protection and enhancement of Indigenous languages and cultures; and
  • provide avenues to articulate issues of relevance to Indigenous audiences and communities.

Application deadline

The application intake is now closed.

Who can apply

To be eligible for funding, your organization or group must be:

  • an incorporated Indigenous not-for-profit organization; or
  • an Indigenous government and equivalent organization, and its delegated authorities such as a council, government or Indigenous group, community or people that holds rights recognized and affirmed by section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982; or
  • an Indigenous community group that includes ad-hoc committees defined as a temporary committee set up to do a specific task (not a permanent standing committee); or
  • in exceptional circumstances, a non-Indigenous not-for-profit organization working in partnership with Indigenous organizations or Indigenous advisory committees in situations where Indigenous organizations do not exist.

In addition, your organization or group must provide broadcast communications north of the Hamelin Line, which is drawn at the 55th parallel and defines the Canadian North for purposes of policy.


We are responsible for determining the eligibility of each applicant, its project and project-related expenses.

The Northern Aboriginal Broadcasting component is highly competitive. Requests for funding exceed our available resources. If you are eligible, submitting an application is not a guarantee of funding, and if your application is successful the funding may not correspond to the amount requested.

Eligible projects

To be eligible for funding from the Northern Aboriginal Broadcasting (NAB) component, your project must include radio and/or television production activities that contribute to the preservation, promotion and revitalization of Indigenous languages and cultures, and that facilitate Northern Indigenous participation in activities and developments related to the North.

Eligible expenses

Only project-related expenses, which can be of cash and in-kind value, are eligible. These may include:

  • salaries and employee benefits directly related to the delivery of the project;
  • training directly related to the successful delivery of the proposed activities;
  • rental/utilities costs for facilities specifically required for the project and/or project activities;
  • equipment rental/service/purchase;
  • project supplies and resource materials;
  • photocopying/printing/translation directly related to project activities;
  • communications directly related to project activities;
  • honoraria for Elders and professional services/consulting fees related directly to the project;
  • travel within Canada related to the project (in accordance with the National Joint Council’s Travel Directive);
  • insurance directly related to project activities;
  • meetings;
  • rent and utilities;
  • purchase or refurbishment of transmitter system and receiving equipment;
  • installation, engineering and shipping costs;
  • satellite leasing costs;
  • costs associated with new and emerging communications technology, including purchase and upgrade of hardware and software;
  • name of television broadcaster (where applicable); and
  • administration costs (not to exceed 15% of the total approved funding), including: bookkeeping services; office supplies; insurance; telephone, fax; postage, courier; photocopying/printing; rent for office space; audit; legal; and translation.

We do not fund expenditures related to: capital construction and renovation; stipends, allowances or honoraria for attendance in a course or activity; salaries and honoraria for a principal officer or Board members; contingency and miscellaneous fees; deficit recovery; start-up and operations costs for institutions, training centres, commercial enterprises; and support for the development of cultural/professional industries.

In-kind contributions are considered real contributions to the cost of the proposed project but are not reimbursable. Donated goods and services may be considered in-kind contributions if they:

  • are essential to your project’s success;
  • are eligible and would otherwise have to be purchased or paid for by you;
  • can be measured at fair market value (i.e. in relation to similar goods and services); and
  • are balanced by an equal revenue in your budget (i.e. total in-kind expenses equal total in-kind revenues).

We cannot fund expenses incurred before the application deadline. If you incur expenses for your project before receiving written confirmation of your funding approval, you will be doing so at your own risk.

Limits of government assistance

To ensure the success of your project, we encourage you to have other funding sources. This may include contributions from your organization or group, the private sector or other levels of government.

The total financial assistance received from the Northern Aboriginal Broadcasting component and other levels of government (federal, provincial/ territorial and municipal) cannot exceed 100% of your total eligible project-related costs.

We can fund up to 100% of eligible expenses or $2,500,000 per fiscal year.

Applying for more than 12 months

You must request funding for the same activities for two fiscal years, notably 2024-2025 and 2025-2026. You must show that you have the capacity to complete the planned activities on an annual basis. This is demonstrated with realistic results and budget projections as well as sound governance.

How to apply

Read these Application Guidelines in their entirety before completing your application.

Contact us to receive your application package.

You must meet all eligibility requirements and submit a complete application package to be considered for funding. A complete application package includes the General Application Form, a budget for each fiscal year, and supporting documents required in the General Application Form (Checklist and Annex A).

Application process

  • complete, sign and date the General Application Form; and
  • attach all the required supporting documents.

Email submissions

We encourage you to submit your application package electronically to the following email address:

The email must be sent no later than 11:59 p.m. local time on the date of the application deadline for your application to be considered.

How applications are evaluated

We fund projects that have clear objectives and measurable results. Funding decisions are based on the number and quality of applications received. Your application will be reviewed for eligibility and completeness and then evaluated based on the Evaluation criteria below.

Failure to comply with any conditions of a previously funded project will be considered in the evaluation of your new application and could result in the rejection of your new application.

Evaluation criteria

The funds will be distributed proportionally using a comparative base amount for core funding and will be adjusted to account for the following factors:

  • production and broadcast of new content in an Indigenous language that reaches north of the Hamelin Line (55th parallel);
  • number of Indigenous languages included in the programming; and
  • organizational capacity.

Funding priority will be given to:

  • television and radio production of new content in an Indigenous language for broadcasting societies whose lead mandate is to broadcast Indigenous content; and
  • television and radio production facilities located north of the Hamelin Line (55th parallel).

Application processing time

For application processing time, please refer to the Service standards for Canadian Heritage funding programs or contact the Program.

We will acknowledge receipt of your application within two weeks of receiving your application.

Funding decisions

Please note that decisions regarding eligibility and funding amounts are final.

How funding is provided

Canadian Heritage will determine if funding will be disbursed as a grant, a fixed contribution or as a flexible contribution (see definitions in the glossary).

Funding conditions

You may be required to submit interim reports during your project. You are required to submit a final report.

If you receive $250,000 or more as a contribution, you are required to submit audited financial statements.

Additional conditions will be included in your funding agreement.

Anti-racism and anti-hate

Canadian Heritage is committed to address systemic racism, promote diversity, and create environments where every individual is valued, respected, and empowered. We strive to challenge discriminatory beliefs and practices, cultivate understanding and empathy, and champion policies and programs that advance equality for all.

Organizations receiving funding, including any representatives whether employees, consultants, or other persons directly affiliated with the organization, must take steps to ensure they respect the values underlying the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Canadian Human Rights Act, and Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy.

Workplace well-being

The Government of Canada is strongly committed to promoting healthy workplaces where harassment, abuse and discrimination are not tolerated. Organizations that receive funding from Canadian Heritage must take measures to create a workplace free from harassment, abuse and discrimination.

Official languages requirements

While supporting efforts to reclaim, revitalize, maintain and strengthen Indigenous languages and to preserve and revitalize Indigenous cultures, Canadian Heritage is subjected to legislations, such as the Official Languages Act. If you receive funding, you agree to comply with the requirements that are set out in your funding agreement, when applicable.

Acknowledgement of financial assistance

If you receive funding, you must publicly acknowledge – in English and in French – the financial support received from us in all communications materials and promotional activities. Additional requirements may be included in your funding agreement.

For additional information, please refer to our Guide on the public acknowledgement of financial support.

Impact Assessment Act

If you receive funding, your project may be subject to the provisions of the Impact Assessment Act. If your activities are to be carried out on federal lands, we will contact you for additional information prior to the start of your project.

Access to information requests

We are subject to the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act. The information you submit in your application may be disclosed in accordance with these Acts.

Disclosure of information

By submitting your funding application, you authorize us to disclose any information submitted with this application within the Government of Canada or to outside entities for the following purposes:

  • to reach a decision;
  • to evaluate the results of the project; and
  • to support transparency, accountability and citizen engagement.

Audits of recipients and evaluation of the Program

We reserve the right to audit your accounts and records to ensure compliance with the terms and conditions of your funding agreement. We also conduct periodic Program evaluations, during which you may be required to present documentation.

You must keep any records, documents, or other information that may be required to perform the audit or the evaluation for five years. Demonstrated failure to maintain such records may result in the repayment of amounts previously received.

Contact us

For further information please contact us:

Northern Aboriginal Broadcasting component
Department of Canadian Heritage
25 Eddy Street, 8th floor
Gatineau, Québec
J8X 4B5

1-866-811-0055 (toll-free)
1-888-997-3123 (toll-free)

Agents are available to answer your questions Monday to Friday, 7:30 am to 6:30 pm (Eastern Time).


Audited financial statements
A complete set of financial statements including a statement of financial position; a statement of operations; and a statement of changes in financial position. Audited financial statements are completed by a certified accountant who is not part of your organization. The certified accountant performs auditing activities in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.
A contribution is a conditional payment issued to your organization or group for a specific purpose, as outlined in a funding agreement. The funding agreement is signed by your organization or group and by us and specifies the terms and conditions to receive payment.
Final report
A final report is submitted at the end of your project based on the requirements in the funding agreement. Your final report needs to provide the results of the activities you have undertaken for the duration of your project.
Financial statements
A complete set of financial statements, including a statement of financial position; a statement of operations; and a statement of changes in financial position. Financial statements may be audited or unaudited.
Fixed Contribution
A fixed contribution funding is an option to Indigenous recipients where eligibility criteria are met. The funding level is predetermined annually based on a reliable estimate of costs to meet program requirements and achieve the planned results. When planned results are achieved and activities completed for less than the amount provided, fixed contribution funding provides the opportunity for the recipient to retain the unexpended funds, subject that all the contribution agreement conditions are met and subject to the approval from Canadian Heritage of a plan on how the unexpended funding will be utilized.
Flexible Contribution
A flexible contribution funding is an option to Indigenous recipients where eligibility criteria are met. The funding level is predetermined in order to support work plan and recurring activities for more than 12 months. The Recipient may retain, during the term of this Agreement, an unexpended balance at the end of each fiscal year to spend towards eligible expenses incurred in subsequent fiscal years. Except for administration costs and travel expenditures, the Recipient may transfer funds from one eligible expenditure category to another without the Minister’s authorization. Any unexpended balance at the end of the Agreement must be returned to Canadian Heritage.
A grant is a payment issued to a recipient for an activity based on eligibility criteria. The conditions you agreed to at the time of application will apply. At the end of the activity, the applicant will be required to submit a report and/or participate in the evaluation of results. Eligibility must be maintained for the duration of the agreement.
Indigenous communities
Indigenous communities are First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities.
Interim reports
Interim reports are submitted during your project based on the requirements in the funding agreement. These reports indicate the results of the activities you have undertaken for a specific period. In addition, they include a status report on work to be accomplished and updated revenue and expense reports.
Liability insurance
Insurance for claims arising from injuries or damage to other people or property.
All parties with an interest in the project with the exception of the Government of Canada. Partners could include individuals, communities, community-based organizations, public and private sector institutions and funding bodies.

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