Application Guidelines – Reopening Fund for Heritage Organizations
Current status of the call for applications: Open
On this page
- Objectives and expected results for the Museums Assistance Program
- Objectives and expected results for the Reopening Fund for Heritage Organizations
- Application deadline
- Who can apply
- Eligible projects
- Eligible expenses
- Ineligible expenses
- Limits of government assistance
- Applying for more than 12 months
- How to apply
- Application process
- How applications are evaluated
- Evaluation criteria
- Application processing time
- Funding decisions
- How funding is provided
- Funding conditions
- Workplace well-being
- Public Health Guidance
- Official languages requirements
- Acknowledgement of financial assistance
- Access to information requests
- Disclosure of information
- Audits of recipients and evaluation of the Program
- Contact us
Objectives and expected results for the Museums Assistance Program
The Museums Assistance Program (MAP) supports heritage institutions and workers in the preservation and presentation of heritage collections in Canada. The Program provides financial assistance to Canadian museums and related institutions for activities that:
- facilitate Canadians’ access to our heritage;
- foster the preservation of Canada’s diverse and rich cultural heritage (other than built heritage), including representative collections of Indigenous cultural heritage; and
- foster professional knowledge, skills and practices related to key museum functions.
Expected long-term results:
- Canada’s heritage is accessible to Canadians over time.
Objectives and expected results for the Reopening Fund for Heritage Organizations
The Government of Canada is implementing the Reopening Fund for Heritage Organizations to help enable the reopening of the heritage sector by supporting organizations that deliver in-person experiences or events, such as museums. Funding will also ensure that heritage institutions are able to contribute to the resilience of their communities as Canada recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The aim of the Reopening Fund for Heritage Organizations, available under the Museums Assistance Program (MAP), is to provide financial assistance to organizations. The fund permits organizations to continue to care for their heritage collections under these exceptional circumstances so that they may remain accessible to Canadians and to support ongoing operating costs in institutions as they seek to recover from the pandemic.
Closing Date: October 20, 2021
High volume of applications expected.
Applicants are encouraged to apply early as funds are limited.
Who can apply
In recognition of the exceptional circumstances created by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Museums Assistance Program (MAP) has temporarily modified eligibility criteria for this funding.
Both incorporated and unincorporated organizations and groups can apply.
To be eligible for funding, your organization must be:
- a not-for-profit organization such as a museum, archives, or historic site (including those that operate seasonally and those without full-time staff);
- an Indigenous organization or official language minority community organization; or,
- a municipal and university museum with a distinct budget.
To be eligible, applicants must also:
- have a heritage collection
- provide public access through regular hours of operation (including on a part-time or seasonal basis); and,
- have had annual expenses in 2019 (or your last completed pre-pandemic fiscal year) between $2,000 and $3,000,000.
The following groups are not eligible to apply:
- organizations that do not have a heritage collection, including zoos, public libraries, aquaria, botanical gardens, artist-run centres, and virtual museums;
- federal, provincial and territorial crown corporations, agencies, and departments; and,
- non-profit organizations which support or manage a heritage collection that is owned by a federal entity (e.g. Parks Canada or Department of National Defence)
We are responsible for determining the eligibility of each applicant, its project and project-related expenses.
Funds are limited and requests may exceed available resources. If your organization is eligible, submitting an application does not guarantee funding.
The financial assistance provided under the Reopening Fund may be used to support business operations and activities that allow for the continuous care of heritage collections during the recovery and reopening period.
Expenses to support business operations and activities that allow for the continuous care of a heritage collection are eligible.
Eligible cash expenses may include, but are not limited to, costs associated with:
- ongoing operations;
- day-to-day collections management activities;
- salaries and wages;
- materials and supplies;
- costs for accessibility (not capital projects);
- Indigenous languages translation;
- minor capital costs (up to 10% of total amount awarded); and,
- other costs related to the care of the collection.
The funds are not to be used to cover expenditures already funded under any other government COVID 19 emergency and recovery/reopening measures, including but not limited to the Canada Council for the Arts, the Major Festivals and Events Support Initiative, the Tourism Relief Fund, the Canada Community Revitalization Fund, the Canada Recovery Benefit, the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, the Canada Emergency Business Account and the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy.
Other ineligible expenses include:
- professional development activities
- professional development activities costs related to participants’ attendance (including travel) to professional development activities;
- feasibility and market study costs;
- the development of project proposals or applications under the MAP or for other federal programs;
- taxes; and,
- other expenses covered by federal departments, Crown corporations and agencies.
Limits of government assistance
The total financial assistance received from the Reopening Fund component of the Museums Assistance Program and other levels of government (federal, provincial/territorial and municipal) cannot exceed 100% of your total project-related costs.
Funding amounts will range from $1,000 to a maximum of $100,000. The amount will be determined by a formula based on your 2019 expenses (or last completed pre-pandemic fiscal year), as supported by financial statements.
Applying for more than 12 months
Funding from the Reopening Fund for Heritage Organizations is for expenses incurred in the twelve months between April 1, 2021 and March 31, 2022.
How to apply
Read these Application Guidelines in their entirety before completing your application.
You must meet all eligibility requirements and submit a complete application package to be considered for funding.
A complete application package includes the application form, the attestation, and the following supporting documents:
- financial statements (audited if available) from 2019 or the last completed pre-pandemic fiscal year;
- proof of legal status (letters patent or other incorporation documents), or in the case of an unincorporated group, a completed Unincorporated Applicant Acceptance of Responsibility Form;
- proof of signing authority as the authorized representative (bylaws, constitution, board resolution, attestation, letter, or other document); and,
- direct deposit enrollment information (void cheque and completed Direct Deposit Enrollment form stamped by your financial institution), unless an account is already set-up with the Department of Canadian Heritage for which no changes are required.
Your application, including all supporting documents, can be submitted electronically through the Canadian Heritage Funding Portal.
Your online application must be submitted by 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on October 20, 2021.
Should you be unable to access the new online system or apply online for any reason, please contact our support team at the coordinates provided in the Contact Us section below.
How applications are evaluated
Your application will be reviewed for eligibility before being evaluated using the national standard criteria described 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 a rejection of your new application.
For the purposes of this reopening fund, funding applications will be assessed using the following criteria:
- the organization has been in operation for a minimum of three years; and
- has a basic governance structure in place.
- the applicant attests that the organization has been negatively impacted by COVID-19, which has resulted in financial hardship to the organization and its operations, and therefore, the organization is in need of government funding.
Funding will be allocated based on the following formula
- for annual expenses between $2,000 and $5,000: fixed funding amount of $1,000;
- for annual expenses between $5,001 and $10,000: fixed funding amount of $2,000;
- for annual expenses between $10,001 and $50,000: fixed funding amount of $5,000;
- for annual expenses between $50,001 and $100,000: fixed funding amount of $10,000; and
- for annual expenses between $100,001 and $3,000,000: variable amount equivalent to 10% of annual expenses up to a maximum of $100,000.
Application processing time
Applicants should expect a funding decision within eight to ten weeks of submitting a complete application.
Applications submitted through the online portal will receive an automated acknowledgement of receipt by email at the time of submission. We will acknowledge receipt of all other applications within two weeks of receiving them in our office.
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 agreed 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.
You may be required to submit a report and/or participate in the evaluation of results.
Additional conditions may apply, if applicable, and will be included in your funding agreement.
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.
Public Health Guidance
We expect that you will act in compliance with applicable statutes, laws, bylaws, regulations, orders, codes, standards, directives and guidelines governing the activities for which funding is being sought, including those related to public health and safety due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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 and 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.
Access to information requests
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.
For further information, please contact us:
Department of Canadian Heritage
Museums Assistance Program
25 Eddy Street
Gatineau, QC K1A 0M5
- 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 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (ET).
- 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 accounting principles.
- Business plan
- A written document that describes your organization’s current status and plans for two to five years. It identifies future opportunities and includes the financial, operational and marketing strategies to achieve your goals.
- 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.
- Ethnocultural communities
- A group of people whose members identify with each other, through a common heritage. For the purpose of this definition, ethnocultural communities include Canadians of diverse culture such as, but not limited to African, Arab, Asian, Latin American or mixed heritage.
- 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.
- Final financial report
- A final financial report includes, as separate items, the budget as well as all of the revenues realized and expenditures incurred for the given period with regard to the Project being funded.
- 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.
- Heritage Collection
- For the purpose of this funding, a heritage collection is a collection of historical works, artefacts, archival material or Indigenous cultural heritage and belongings under the care of a heritage organization, such as a history museum, art museum, archive, historic site or Indigenous organization.
- Indigenous communities
- Indigenous communities are First Nations, Inuit and Métis 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.
- Official-Language Minority Communities
- The official-language minority communities are the Anglophone communities residing in Quebec and the Francophone communities residing outside of Quebec.
- An individual working on behalf of others without receiving financial or material gain.
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