Engaging youth leaders to encourage organizations to apply for funding under the Youth Innovation Component of the Enabling Accessibility Fund (Closed)

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

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Application period

Current status: Closed

Organizations must submit their application by November 30, 2021, 5:00 p.m. Eastern time.

Applicants should not start their proposed projects until:

  • they receive approval of their project from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)
  • an agreement has been signed between the organization and a representative of ESDC

Please note that not all applications submitted under this process will be approved. Funding is limited. It is subject to budget considerations of ESDC and allocation of funds by Parliament.

Decisions are final and there is no appeal process.

The application period to become a Youth Accessibility Leader is from June 4, 2021 to October 29, 2021 at 5:00 pm Eastern Daylight Time (EDT).


We are looking for young Canadians to help make Canada more accessible.

The Enabling Accessibility Fund (EAF) is looking for dynamic youth who want to demonstrate leadership and a commitment to their communities. Youth volunteer their time to build a more accessible Canada.


We want you and what you have to offer, if you are:

  • between 15 and 30 years of age
  • determined to make a difference in your community, and
  • you want to develop valuable skills and gain key experience

Apply to become an EAF Youth Accessibility Leader

Note, as a Youth Accessibility Leader you can work as a team and have a few friends support you throughout the process.

About the EAF Youth Innovation Component

The EAF Youth Innovation Component provides an opportunity for you to have a direct impact in the lives of persons with disabilities. You can do this by addressing accessibility barriers in public spaces or workplaces within your community. Through this work, you will:

  • create greater awareness about accessibility needs
  • encourage organizations to apply for EAF funding to address existing accessibility barriers, and
  • build a more inclusive and accessible Canada

Role of the Youth Accessibility Leader

As a Youth Accessibility Leader, you will be part of a growing community of youth from across the country that have:

  • found accessibility barriers in workplaces or public spaces
  • talked with organizations about their existing accessibility barriers
  • encouraged organizations to apply for funding to address their accessibility barriers
  • helped an organization draft and submit a project proposal (valued at up to $10,000)
  • helped promote the program at media events, and
  • made a difference in the lives of persons with disabilities

Benefits of being a Youth Accessibility Leader:

  • increased awareness of accessibility barriers in your community
  • personal and community empowerment
  • valuable presentation skills
  • experience preparing or assisting in preparing project proposals
  • networking opportunities, and
  • social responsibility and volunteer experience that impacts your community

Previously funded youth projects include:

  • mobile recording studio
  • tandem bike for the visually impaired
  • adapted snowboards
  • FM hearing loops
  • accessible sensory room
  • noise canceling headphones, and
  • pool wheelchair

What you need to know before you apply

Description of the funding process

Read this section to learn more about the process:

  1. apply to become a Youth Accessibility Leader by completing the online form. After you have applied, you will receive an email to confirm receipt of your application. You will hear back from us within 10 business days
  2. if you are eligible, we will send you a tool kit by email with all the information required to help you start your journey. The tool kit includes the Youth Journey Journal, the application form, and applicant guide. With this information, you will have a basic understanding of the EAF program and the eligibility criteria of the process
  3. you are now ready to think about your community and find accessibility barriers that limit persons with disabilities from participating in everyday life. You will talk to an organization with existing accessibility barriers and encourage them to apply for funding through the EAF Youth Innovation Component
  4. you will help the interested organization to complete the funding application

New for 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the continued need for technology to be more available and accessible for persons with disabilities. For this reason, projects related to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) are a priority for this funding call.

In order to be eligible for funding, you must clearly and completely tell us how your project meets the following criteria:

  • it will be for community use (not an individual user like a personal hearing aid)
  • the end-users are persons with disabilities, and
  • the organization requires the technology to support programming and/or services offered for persons with disabilities

Some ICT project ideas include:

  • purchasing specialized accessible communication equipment
  • modifying a website to make it accessible for persons with disabilities
  • installation of an FM loop system
  • installing visual-audio fire alarm systems
  • purchasing screen readers
  • installing voice recognition software and speech synthesizers
  • installing adaptive technology for a client services desk to render them accessible for employees with disabilities

Eligible organizations

The following organizations are eligible to apply for EAF Youth Innovation Component funding:

  • not-for-profit organizations (including social enterprises)
  • businesses (maximum 99 full-time equivalent employees)
  • Indigenous organizations
  • municipal governments, and
  • territorial governments

Ineligible organizations that are not eligible for the funding

  • Primary and secondary schools
  • Publically funded health care institutions


The application period to submit your interest in becoming a Youth Accessibility Leader is from June 4, 2021 to October 29, 2021 at 5:00 pm (EDT).

Contact us

Please send any questions to EDSC.JEUNESSEFA-YOUTHEAF.ESDC-GD@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca. We will answer any questions sent before November 30, 2021 at 5:00 pm (EDT).

We look forward to hearing from you!

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