Funding programs for jobs, training and social development projects

Our department offers funding through grants and contribution (Gs&Cs) programs that help support jobs, training and social development. This page provides information and resources on Gs&Cs and funding processes.

Find funding opportunities

What are grants and contributions?

ESDC mainly provides funding through grants and contributions also known as transfer payments.


Grants are payments made to an individual or organization based on eligibility and entitlement criteria. In most cases, recipients are not required to account for how the grant is used and the department will not subject them to an audit; however, there can be exceptions depending on program requirements. As a recipient, you may be required to report on the results achieved with the grant.


Contributions are similar to grants, but instead of a payment, an organization gets reimbursed for specific costs if they meet eligibility criteria and specific conditions. As a recipient, you have to account for how the contribution is used. ESDC can examine how the funds have been used throughout the duration of a project and you could also be subject to an audit.

What are funding processes?

To issue grants or contributions, ESDC programs use different funding processes to receive funding applications.

Call for proposals

A call for proposals is an open, formal, and planned process with a specific start and end date. It is used to identify eligible applicants interested in achieving program objectives and expected outcomes.

Applicants submit a complete, costed application for funding consideration. The focus is on the eligibility and viability of the project activities and the eligibility and capacity of the applicant organization to manage the project appropriately according to the program terms and conditions.

Call for concepts

A call for concept is a formal process used to identify eligible applicants interested in achieving program objectives and expected outcomes. Applicants submit a concept paper based on the parameters of the call for concept. The focus is on the eligibility of the project “idea” rather than a fully detailed project proposal, while taking into account the organization as well. Following the assessment process, ESDC may invite successful applicants to submit a full proposal.

Expression of interest

An expression of interest (EOI) is a formal process where applicants express their interest in program funding to achieve ESDC's policy priorities, program objectives and expected outcomes. The focus is on the eligibility of the organization (based on program-specific assessment criteria) rather than on a project “idea”. Following the screening process, ESDC may invite successful EOI applicants to submit a concept paper or a proposal.

Continuous intake

Continuous intake is a process where ESDC funding is available to the public for a specific program on a long-term basis. This process has no specific deadline for the submission of applications, so applicants can apply for funding at any time. Assessment of applications is based on program-specific assessment criteria, objectives and expected results as well as budget availability.

Solicited applications

A program may solicit specific organizations to submit an application for consideration following a call for concepts, an expression of interest, or when an unanticipated situation arises requiring a rapid response. This process can be used when ESDC has significant knowledge on the limited pool of organizations that could deliver expected results.

Grants and contributions toolkit

Grants and Contribution Online Services (GCOS)

Register for a Grants and Contributions Online Service (GCOS) account or log in to your existing account to apply for funding opportunities.

Service standards and service performance reporting

ESDC service standards for processing grants and contributions applications under normal circumstances.

Who has received ESDC funding?

The Government of Canada proactively publishes information on awarded grants and contributions for transparency and accountability.

ESDC Programs and policy initiatives

A list of programs and policy initiatives including grants and contributions programs, offered by ESDC.

ESDC programs and policy initiatives

Page feedback
Did you find what you were looking for?

If not, tell us why below:

What was wrong?

You will not receive a reply. Telephone numbers and email addresses will be removed.

Thank you for your feedback.

Page details

Date modified: