Application Guidelines — Community Capacity Building component

The Community Support, Multiculturalism, and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program

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Objectives for the Community Support, Multiculturalism, and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program

The Community Support, Multiculturalism, and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program supports the mandate of the Department of Canadian Heritage by building on Canada's strength as a diverse and inclusive society.

The Program and the Community Capacity Building component objectives are to:

  • support communities in confronting racism and discrimination, promoting intercultural and interfaith understanding and fostering equitable opportunities to participate fully in Canadian society;
  • promote and engage in discussions on multiculturalism, diversity, racism and religious discrimination at the domestic and international levels;
  • strengthen research and evidence to build understanding of the disparities and challenges faced by racialized and religious minority communities, and Indigenous Peoples.

Expected results for the Community Capacity Building component

The Community Capacity Building component of the Community Support, Multiculturalism, and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program provides funding for capacity building projects that will contribute to the recipient’s ability to promote diversity and inclusion of racialized and religious minority communities, and Indigenous Peoples.

This component specifically target projects that will help achieve one or more of the following expected results:

  • strengthening governance and building partnerships - building the capacity of organizations, and promoting collaboration between service providers;
  • e-capacity: building and/or strengthening the online and social media presence of eligible organizations;
  • establishing an overall external communication strategy;
  • recruitment and training of volunteers.

Application deadline

The application intake is now closed.

Who can apply

The following groups and institutions are eligible for funding:

  • Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit or Métis) governments, tribal councils, band councils, or not-for-profit Indigenous organizations;
  • Canadian not-for-profit organizations and associations.


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

The Program is highly competitive. Requests for funding typically exceed our available resources. Even if your organization is eligible, submitting an application does not guarantee funding.

Eligible projects

To be eligible for funding your project must contribute to the Program’s objectives and expected results. This call for proposals is for funding for projects up to two years in duration, and with a start date no earlier than April 1, 2021.

The following types of activities are eligible:

  • Organizational governance:
    • supporting the development or enhancement of skills to enhance an organization’s ability to promote diversity and inclusion. For example: technology literacy; dissemination of tools for learning and skills development of employees or volunteers;
    • evaluating and improving board effectiveness or creating a board or governing body;
    • governance training for board/steering committee members of eligible organizations.
  • Building the financial and/or organizational capacity:
    • creating a marketing plan;
    • developing human resources strategies or building the organizational structure;
    • development of a website and/or online applications to improve access to information and services.
  • Partnership development, collaboration, networking:
    • building and improving partnerships to strengthen the organization’s network.
  • Strategic planning:
    • developing and implementing an organizational strategic plan to streamline an organization’s resources or to coordinate or share resources with other organizations, or to expand the reach and efficiency of services;
    • developing a communication plan to improve social media presence.

Eligible expenses

Only project-related expenses which can be of cash and in-kind value are eligible; these may include:

  • temporary project staff salaries and benefits directly related to project delivery;
  • consultant fees to deliver the project;
  • translation costs for the project;
  • website development or upgrades and computer equipment or software specifically related to the implementation of the project;
  • travel and accommodation within Canada, which must not exceed the rates permitted for travel on government business;
  • insurance (recipients must ensure that any public events funded by the Program are covered by appropriate insurance).

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);
  • are balanced by an equal revenue in your budget (i.e. total in-kind expenses equal total in-kind revenues).

In all cases, administration/overhead costs will be limited to a maximum of 15% of the total project funding.

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

Expenses that will not be considered for funding include:

  • any type of Director’s fees for volunteer members of Boards or other governing bodies;
  • capital costs or expenditures (eg. renovation expenses);
  • ongoing production of newsletters, newspapers, magazines, journals, or radio and television broadcasts;
  • budget deficits, debt reduction, organizational reserves or endowment funds;
  • bonuses, honoraria, stipends or similar payments to project staff or others;
  • contributions to fundraising campaigns or other fundraising events;
  • religious and/or politically partisan activities;
  • direct service delivery activities.

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, the private sector, or other levels of government.

Total government assistance cannot exceed 100% of total eligible project-related expenses. Total government assistance includes all levels of government funding: federal, provincial and municipal.

We can fund up to 100% of the eligible expenses of the project up to a maximum of $100,000.

Applying for more than 12 months

You may request funding for a project spanning more than 12 months. You must show then that there is a need for a multi-year commitment and that you have the capacity to complete the project. This is demonstrated with a realistic project timeline and budget projections, as well as sound governance.

How to apply

Please contact us to receive an application package. Please contact the Program before submitting your application.

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

You must meet all the eligibility requirements and submit a complete application package before the deadline to be considered for funding. A complete application package includes:

  • the signed Application Form Capacity-CSMARI;
  • a balanced (no surplus or deficit) budget form Capacity-CSMARI in accordance with the Budget instruction sheet;
  • most recent financial statements (audited if available);
  • documents demonstrating your organization’s legal constitution, bylaws, and incorporation, or articles of association for unincorporated applicants.

Additional documents may be required, depending on the nature of your project.

Application process

  • Complete, sign and date the Application Form;
  • Attach all the required supporting documents.

Submit your application through only one means (i.e. by email or by mail).

Email submissions

We encourage you to submit your application package electronically, at 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.

Mail submissions

You can mail or courier your complete application package to the headquarters of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

Your application must be postmarked no later than the published deadline 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 evaluated based on the criteria below. It will be compared with other applications received and prioritized in relation to the funds available.

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

Evaluation criteria

The following criteria will be used to evaluate all eligible applications:

Project design, goals and rationale

  • the project contributes to one or more of the stated objectives and the expected results of the Community Capacity Building component;
  • the application clearly demonstrates the need for and the value-added of the project;
  • project capacity building activities are clearly described.

Results, budget integrity and value for money

  • the proposal demonstrates the extent to which the project, as designed, is likely to have significant impact;
  • the project demonstrates efficient use of resources and value for money;
  • the proposed budget in the application form is reasonable in terms of proposed capacity building activities and demonstrates efficient and prudent use of public funds.

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 the date your application is received by the Department.

Funding decisions

We reserve the right to target our funding to specific projects.

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

How funding is provided

We will determine if funding will be disbursed as a grant or as a contribution.

A grant is a payment issued to a recipient for a project. The conditions you agree to at the time of application will apply. At the end of your project, you may be required to submit a report and/or participate in the evaluation of results.

A contribution is a conditional payment issued for a specific purpose, as outlined in a funding agreement. The agreement is signed by your organization and by us, and specifies the terms and conditions to receive payment. At the end of your project, you must submit a final report.

Funding conditions

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

Additional funding conditions may apply and, if applicable, will be included in your funding agreement.

Workplace well-being

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

Official languages requirements

We are committed to taking positive measures to enhance the vitality of official language minority communities and to promote the use of English and French in Canadian society. If you receive funding, you agree to comply with the official languages requirements set out in your application or in your funding agreement.

Acknowledgement of financial assistance

If you receive funding, you must publicly acknowledge – in English and in French – the financial support received from the Government of Canada 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;
  • to support transparency, accountability and citizen engagement;
  • to explore the possibility of funding from another federal government program.

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 by:

Community Support, Multiculturalism, and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program
Department of Canadian Heritage
15 Eddy Street
Gatineau, QC  K1A 0M5
1-866-811-0055 (toll-free)
1-888-997-3123 (for people who are deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired)

Agents are available to answer your questions Monday to Friday, 8:30 am to 5:00 pm (ET).


This glossary contains definitions for some important terms used in the application guidelines, the application form or any other documents that could be required in the assessment of your project.

Administrative costs
Administrative expenses such as office supplies, telephone, fax, Internet, utilities, postage, courier, photocopying/printing, and rent for office space.
Audited financial report
An audited financial report includes a statement of operations for the given period with regard to the project and is prepared by a certified accountant who is not part of your organization.
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 auditing standards principles.
Cash flow
A presentation of all anticipated revenues and planned expenses that will occur over the length of your project. At the beginning of your project, your cash flow will have only forecasted revenues and expenses. Over time, your cash flow will be updated to reflect the actual revenues and expenses.
Final financial report
A final financial report includes, as separate items, the budget as well as all the revenues realized and expenditures incurred for the given period with regard to the project being funded.
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 and include a final report of actual revenues and expenses.
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.
Payments for services provided by a person who is not a staff member of the organization, or by a firm that is separate from the organization. For example, it includes fees for, or in respect of, services provided by writers, translators and event managers.
Indigenous communities
Indigenous communities include 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 undertaken for a specific period. In addition, they include a status report on the 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.
National in scope
Projects that are delivered or have an impact in three or more provinces and/or territories.
Official-language minority communities
The official-language minority communities are the Anglophone communities residing in Quebec and the Francophone communities residing outside of Quebec.
All parties (individuals, communities, community-based organizations, public and private sector institutions and funding bodies) with a vested interest in a particular issue.
An individual working on behalf of others without receiving financial or material gain.
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