Funding: Foreign Credential Recognition Loans – Developing your application

From Employment and Social Development Canada

4. Developing your application

It is recommended that you consult this section while filling in the Application for Funding, as it provides important details on the information and supporting documentation ESDC requires to assess your application. Provide your answers on the application form and attach only the documents requested (see Apply/Checklist).

For ease of use, below are links to each section of the Application for Funding:

All required documents must be attached; otherwise your application will be considered incomplete and screened out. You are required to submit your Application for Funding in one complete package by the closing date of the CFP.

If you need additional space to answer any of the questions, please use the space provided in Appendix A of the Application for Funding.

Part 1 - Organization

A - Organization Identification

ESDC uses the information you provide in this section to establish your organization’s identity.

Question 1 - Legal Name

Please provide the legal name of your organization. Usually, this is the name associated with your business/registration with the CRA, or the name that would appear on funding cheques.

Question 2 - Operating (Common) Name (if different from legal name)

Please provide the operating (or common) name of your organization if it is different from the legal name.

Question 3 - Business or Registration Number

Please provide your 15-digit business/registration number from the CRA. You are also required to submit a document from the CRA that includes your business/registration number (e.g. tax-related documents, CRA correspondence).

Example: 123456789 RR 0001

For more information, please visit the CRA website.

Question 4 - Organization Type

In order to be eligible for funding under this CFP, your organization must be incorporated, not-for-profit organization, outside the province of Quebec.

For more details, please refer to Eligibility.

Question 5 - Organization Category

Not applicable for this CFP.

Question 6 - Year Established

Please indicate the year your organization was established.

Questions 7 to 11 - Organization Address

Please indicate the address of your organization. Applicants must provide a complete address in a format recognized by Canada Post. Information is available on the Canada Post website.

Questions 12 to 14 - Telephone, Fax and E-mail

Please indicate the telephone number, fax number (if applicable) and e-mail address of the organization.

Questions 15 to 19 - Mailing Address (if different from Organization Address)

Please indicate the mailing address if different from your organization’s address.

Questions 20 and 21 - Telephone and Fax

Please indicate the telephone and fax numbers if different from your organization’s address.

Question 22 - Organization’s Mandate

Please describe the main activities of your organization, including your mission, mandate and objectives.

B - Organization Contact (This should be our primary contact person in respect to this application for funding)

Please provide a main contact for the purposes of communicating with your organization about this project. This could be the president/organization leader/owner/manager or a delegate of their choice.

Question 23 - Given Name and Surname

Please provide the name of the person in your organization who will be ESDC’s main contact for the project.

Question 24 - Position Title

Please provide the title of the organization contact identified in Question 23.

E.g., Business Owner, President, Executive Director.

Question 25 - Preferred Language of Communication

Please indicate the preferred language of the organization’s main contact for both written and spoken communication.

Question 26 - Organization Contact - Address

Please indicate whether the address for the Organization contact is the same address as the Organization address or the Organization mailing address given in Section 1A. If different, please indicate in the box.

Questions 27 to 31 - Contact Address

If you selected “Different” in Question 27, please provide the address for the Organization contact here.

Questions 32 and 33 - Telephone and Fax

Please indicate the telephone and fax numbers of the Organization contact.

Question 34 - E-mail Address

Please indicate the e-mail address of the Organization contact. Please note that this is where all correspondence will be sent.

C - Organizational Capacity

ESDC uses the information provided in this section to help assess the organization’s capacity to manage a project.

Question 35 – How many employees does your organization currently have?

Please indicate the total number of people employed in your organization. The number of employees must be a whole number.

Question 36 – Has your organization undergone any important transformations in the past two (2) years?

For the purpose of this CFP “important transformations” refers to events such as a change in leadership in the board of directors or at the executive level, an important reduction, increase or turnover in staff, a merger with or split from another organization, a change in mandate or main activities, etc.

If you answer ‘‘yes’’, please provide a description of the changes.

Question 37 – Please describe how your organization has the experience and expertise to carry out the proposed project activities. If applicable, please include any past experience with ESDC and the results of the project.

Please provide information demonstrating your organization’s experience providing support services to participants. This should include services specific to the recognition of foreign credentials.

In addition, if applicable, please include any information regarding your organization’s experience, managing grant and/or contribution agreement(s) with ESDC and/or with other federal/provincial/territorial government departments or agencies. Please provide a brief description of the project(s), the monetary value and its results. In addition, list a contact name and website link to the program that provided the funding.

Question 38 – Does your organization owe any amounts to the Government of Canada?

If yes, please indicate the amounts owing in the spaces provided. See the following example:

Amount owing Nature of amount owing Department or agency to which money is owed
$10,000 Overpayment Employment and Social Development Canada

Answering "yes" to this question will not invalidate your application. However, you must provide details as to the type of debt owed and the arrangements that have been made for repayment.

Question 39 - If an amount is owing, is a payment plan in place?

Please indicate whether or not payment arrangements have been made.

Part 2 - Project

A - Project Identification

Question 40 - Project Title

Please provide a brief, descriptive project title.

Questions 41 and 42 - Planned Project Start and End Dates

Please indicate the planned start and end dates of your project.

Proposed activities cannot begin before your project is approved and a funding agreement has been signed by both of you and ESDC. Any activities that occur prior to the signing of the Funding Agreement cannot be reimbursed.

You should not assume any commitment on the part of ESDC until funding has been approved and a Funding Agreement has been signed by a representative of ESDC. ESDC will notify you in writing of the outcome of the review of your application.

For the purpose of this CFP, agreements are not expected to start until March 2018.

B - Project Description

Question 43 - Project Objectives (must be clearly linked to the objectives of the program to which you are applying).

Objectives are statements of desired change that describe what should be accomplished and provide a context in which progress can be monitored and success can be measured. Proposals should include clear and achievable objectives. The objectives should be described in terms of quantifiable and measurable goals to be achieved through this project.

For this CFP, ESDC will consider your project eligible for funding if it is clearly linked to the CFP objectives, as stated below.

Projects must clearly support the following FCRP objectives:

  • to contribute to developing fair, transparent, consistent, and timely foreign credential assessment and recognition capacity;
  • to develop and strengthen Canada’s foreign credential assessment and recognition capacity; and
  • to contribute to improving labour market integration outcomes of Internationally Trained Individuals (participants) in targeted occupations and sectors.

The above mentioned objectives must be met by providing loans and support services to participants undertaking FCR activities so as to improve success in having their credentials recognized and find employment in their original occupations or related ones.

Question 44 - Project Activities (must be broken down into clear steps).

Project activities are the steps that will be taken to accomplish the objective(s) of the project. Activities should be specific, measurable, realistic and relevant to the project objective(s) and demonstrate how the project outputs and outcomes will be achieved.

Your answer to this question must include details regarding all your planned activities. Please refer to Eligibility for examples and additional details on eligible activities.

All activities carried out in the funded projects will follow this framework over the course of the duration of the project/funding agreement:

Phase 1 (first 4 years of the agreement) - Contribution payment period:

Recipient organizations will provide support services to participants and will refer participants to financial institutions to issue loans. Within Phase 1, as loans are repaid, recipient organizations could guarantee additional loans issued by financial institutions, as long as they continue to meet the private leverage ratio of 2:1.

Although it is expected that activities at Phase 1 would be carried out over a 4 year period, recipient organizations may decide to stop referring participants for loans sooner. In this case, Phase 1 would end and Phase 2 - Loan repayment period would automatically begin.

At the end of Phase 1, a financial report will be completed and submitted to ESDC to account for unspent funds in the loan guarantee fund that are expected to be returned to the Receiver General over Phase 2 of the project.

Phase 2 (last 4 years of the agreement) - Loan repayment period:

Recipient organizations will no longer refer participants to financial institutions for loans. However, recipient organizations will continue to offer support services to participants and will collaborate with financial institutions to manage the loan guarantee fund.

During Phase 2, financial reconciliation will take place on an annual basis to account for loan repayment or claims made by financial institutions against the loan guarantee fund.

Although it is expected that activities at Phase 2 would be carried out over a 4 year period, this phase of the project could end sooner if loans are all repaid before the end date.

In order to support administrative costs during the loan repayment period of the agreement, recipient organizations may use up to 10% of the unexpended loan guarantee fund annually.

At the end of the agreement, recipient organizations will not retain any funds, including interest earned on the loan guarantee fund.

In addition, for this CFP, projects are expected to include the following activities:

  • Enter into a Financial Institution Contract with a financial institution, and submit it to ESDC within 90 days following the project start date. Please note that ESDC will not advance funds for the loan guarantee fund to recipient organizations until a Financial Institution Contract has been signed between the recipient organizations and a financial institution, and a copy of the contract and a certification statement have been provided to ESDC.
  • Manage daily operations of the initiative with participants, including but not limited to:
    • Participant recruitment;
    • Participant screening and assessment for loans;
    • One-on-one career counselling with participants;
    • Financial counselling with participants to determine the financial risk, likelihood of obtaining loans, estimating the loan amount required and completing credential plan; and
    • Providing support throughout the loan process for navigating the complexities of FCR processes and/or related alternative career or training activities.
  • Manage activities with financial institutions, including but not limited to:
    • Refer participants to financial institutions in order to facilitate the issuance of loans and repayment;
    • Collaborate with financial institutions to deliver loans to participants;
    • Manage any issues related to default payments and liaise with participants; and
    • Manage a loan guarantee fund with financial institutions, through a dedicated account.
  • Collect and report on the established results measurement indicators for the project.
  • Complete and submit to ESDC, financial reports after each Phase of the project, as described above.
  • May provide assistance in securing employment by connecting with employers in the participants chosen field.

Additional points

Additional points may be provided to proposals which:

  • Include an outreach strategy to improve awareness and increase uptake;
  • Provide support services tailored to the needs of immigrant women who face additional barriers to having credentials recognized in comparison to their male counterparts;
  • Confirm, at the time of the application, that they have secured an interest rate for loans from a financial institution at prime +2% or lower, to encourage low borrowing costs for participants (letters of intent); or
  • Secure a private leverage ratio above the minimum 2:1; meaning for every dollar ($1) issued by a financial institution, less than 50 cents (half of every dollar) is guaranteed under the loan guarantee fund.

Applicants must include the following details:

  • A description of each activity and explanation of how each relates to the objective(s) of the project. There should always be a clear link between the project activities and the project objective(s) (see Question 43). Please list the project activities in a logical sequence, including timelines and/or duration of each, and descriptions where needed. Timelines must be clearly established and feasible. Each activity should be clearly linked to the project costs outlined in the budget (Sections 3B and 3C). This should demonstrate your expected progress and plans to complete the project on time and within budget.
  • Project milestones, timelines and/or duration of the various activities (milestones are significant events or points of progress during the project). These should demonstrate your expected progress and plans to complete the project on time and within budget.
  • Clear linkages between the project activities and the project costs outlined in the budget (see Questions 58 to 61). Costs associated with all identified activities should be reflected in the Budget Detail Template (PDF or Excel format).

Question 45 - Expected Results of the Project (must be clearly linked to the project objectives and be specific, concrete and measurable).

Please describe the expected results of your project. The expected results of the project must be clearly linked to the project objectives. The expected results must also be specific, concrete and measurable (qualitative or quantitative) and must be defined as outputs and outcomes.


Outputs are direct products or services that will be produced to generate the desired outcomes. Several activities could contribute to one output. They answer the question “What will the project produce?” (e.g. a report). It is important to set measurable results, qualitative or quantitative, so that you can track the success of your project. A good project proposal will clearly define project activities and expected results. List the results you want to achieve, and then determine how you will measure them. This will also assist you in defining your project Results Measurement Indicators (see Question 46 below).

Outcomes are the short-term and intermediate changes that are expected to occur as the result of the project (more than one outcome could be directly related to an objective). They answer the questions “How do we know the project is successful?” and “How do the activities lead to improvements for the beneficiaries?”

For the purpose of this CFP, projects should demonstrate the following outputs and outcomes:


  • Participants served with support services (e.g. one-on-one career and financial counselling) over the course of the project;
  • Participants issued loans and served support services over the course of the project; and
  • Loans are issued to participants who are women over the course of the project.


The expected long-term outcomes of the FCR Loans are for participants to have better employment outcomes. Under this CFP, each project must contribute to following outcomes:

  • Participants have their credentials assessed and recognized; and
  • Participants have better employment outcomes.

Question 46 - Does the project include Results Measurement Indicators?

Please describe how you will meet and track the expected results of the project. Provide a description of how you plan to gather, measure, monitor and report on results achieved by your project.

Proposals must include at least one result measurement indicator for each of the project’s expected results identified under Question 45. In addition, for each result measurement indicator, data collection mechanisms must be provided.

Measuring results is a way to ensure that you know how your project is progressing towards meeting the expected results. It helps connect a project’s activities and outputs to its intended outcomes as well as the CFP’s overall outcomes. ESDC uses the information you provide in this section to assess your capacity to demonstrate results.

Applicants will be required to report to ESDC using results measurement indicators to monitor progress achieved against the project’s stated objectives over the project lifecycle.

Your proposed project must include the following results measurement indicators:

  • Number of participants referred to financial institutions for loans;
  • Number of approved loans;
  • Number of participants served with support services only;
  • Number of participants issued loans and served with support services;
  • Number of participants who are women;
  • Total loan value issued by the Financial Institution to participants;
  • Data on occupations and types of credential activities of participants;
  • Percentage of participants who complete their credential assessment at the end of the project;
  • Percentage of participants who find employment in their intended or related occupation at the end of the project;
  • Total loan repayment and default rates; and
  • Data on what loan recipients used the money for.

Question 47 - Does this proposed project fit with your organization’s other activities?

If “yes”, please describe how.

Question 48 - Will any of the project activities be delivered in a different location than where your organization is located?

Please indicate “yes” or “no”. If “yes”, please list the main address first, followed by each additional location.

If there are more than five locations, please include in Appendix A.

Question 49 - Is your project designed to benefit or involve people in English or French-language minority communities? If yes, please provide an explanation and any details on whether consultations will take place with these communities?

ESDC is committed to enhancing the vitality of the English and French linguistic minorities in Canada by supporting and assisting their development and fostering the full recognition and use of both English and French in Canadian society. Official language minority communities are English-speaking communities established within the province of Quebec and French-speaking communities established outside the province of Quebec.

If your project will involve official language minority communities, you should answer "yes" to this question and ensure that this is listed and described in your answer to Question 43 - Project Objectives.

Please also identify the linguistic profile of the beneficiaries targeted by the project, document any special needs of the official language minority communities, and indicate whether or not they were consulted. Related budgetary items can be identified in Part 3 of the application.

Answering "no" to this question will not invalidate your application.

Question 50 - Will any other organizations, networks or partners be involved in carrying out the project?

For the purpose of this CFP, you must demonstrate through a letter of intent that your organization has secured a partnership with a financial institution to issue loans. The letter(s) of intent must:

  • demonstrate a commitment from financial institutions to use their own capital to fund loans; and
  • demonstrate a commitment from financial institutions to meet a minimum private leverage ratio of 2:1.

If, at the time of the application (in the letter of intent), you can demonstrate that you have secured an interest rate from a financial institution at prime +2% or lower, to encourage low borrowing costs for participants, your proposal may be attributed additional points.

In addition to the letter(s) confirming the partnership with a financial institution, if applicable, applicants must describe the nature of the involvement of other external partners to their project. Involvement can take the form of time and/or resources and demonstrate that partners have a vested interest in project results.

Provide the following information regarding the partnering financial institution and other partner organization(s):

  • Name of the organization;
  • Type of organization (e.g. not for profit, publicly funded, etc.); and
  • Nature of partner's involvement in the proposed project.

Question 51 - Not Applicable for this CFP

Question 52 - Does your project include activities that are listed in the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency’s (CEAA) Regulations Designating Physical Activities established under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012?

NB: Applicants must verify if their proposed activities are listed under the above Act – Please visit Act and List of Regulations to access the list of Regulations Designating Physical Activities.

Please indicate “yes” or “no”.

If the answer is “no” - No Environmental Assessment will be required.

If the answer is “yes”, then, as per the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012, the applicant must submit the project description electronically to the CEAA (Preparing a Project Description) for further review. The CEAA will determine if an Environmental Assessment (EA) is required based on the project description.

Part 3 - Funding

Please note that ESDC will not advance funds for the loan guarantee fund to recipient organizations until a contract has been signed between the recipient organization and a financial institution (Financial Institution contract), and a copy has been provided to ESDC.

A - Anticipated Sources of Funding

ESDC will use the information provided in this section to verify that your funding request meets the requirement for funding from other sources.

For the purposes of this CFP, cash and/or in-kind contributions equal to or greater than 15% of eligible project costs, excluding amounts related to the loan guarantee fund, must be provided through sources other than the Government of Canada (which can include the applicant’s own organization). These amounts must be reflected in this section and applicants must provide letters confirming financial support from contributors with their application, indicating the amount of contributions, and confirming that it will be directly applied to project costs before ESDC funding can be provided.

Each program has a “stacking limit”, that is, a maximum permitted amount of combined funding from federal, provincial, territorial and municipal governments for any one project or initiative. Contributions to the project cannot exceed 100% of eligible expenditures. ESDC uses the information provided in this section to verify that your funding request conforms to any stacking limit or requirement for funding from other sources.

“Other sources of funding” includes any source of funding (including from your organization) other than the program to which you are applying for funding.

Question 53 - Source Name

Please include the names of all the organizations that will contribute funds and/or in-kind contributions to this project (including ESDC) as listed in the table.

Question 54 - Source Type

Please identify the type of organization that is contributing funds and/or in-kind contributions to this project from the following options:

  • Not-for-profit organizations
  • For-profit organizations
  • Municipal governments
  • Indigenous organizations (including band councils, tribal councils and self-government entities)
  • Provincial and territorial governments, institutions, agencies and Crown Corporations.

Question 55 - Cash

Please include the amount of funding that will be provided.

Question 56 - In-kind ($ value)

In-kind contributions are non-monetary goods or services that may be contributed to the project by your organization or other organizations. Organizations cannot request reimbursement for these contributions. In-kind support may include donated equipment, services or labour necessary for the proposed project that would otherwise have to be purchased. Applicants must provide letters from contributors with their application, confirming in-kind contributions.

An assessment of the in-kind contributions will be included in the overall assessment of each application. Only in-kind contributions that are deemed to be estimated at fair market value and to contribute directly to the success of the project will be considered valid.

Question 57 - Confirmed Cash and In-Kind

All cash and in-kind contributions must be committed to in writing by the contributing organization(s). Please check (x) if this has been confirmed and include with your application letters from each contributing organization confirming cash and in-kind contributions.

B - Budget

Applicants must provide an estimate of the project’s costs. ESDC uses the information provided in this section to assess the overall cost of the proposed project, as well as the general nature of the expenditures to be covered by all anticipated sources of funding.

Please use the Budget Detail Template (PDF or Excel) which must be included as part of the application.

Question 58 - Cost Category

Please summarize your project budget according to the following cost categories and provide the necessary details in the Budget Detail Template:

  1. Staff wages and mandatory employment-related costs (MERCs)
  2. Project costs
  3. Capital assets
  4. Loan Guarantee Fund

For more details, please refer to the list of eligible costs under Eligibility.

Questions 59 to 61 - ESDC/Other - Cash/Other - In-kind

Please provide the total planned expenditures.

“Other” includes funding from another source (not ESDC).

C - Budget Details

Question 62 - Associated Businesses or Individuals.

Please check all statements that apply to your planned expenditures of ESDC funding.

In carrying out projects, recipient organizations may have to purchase various goods or services needed to perform the project from contractors. Some recipient organizations may also contract out to third parties (i.e. outside providers) to perform part of the project activities and aid the recipient organizations to achieve the objectives of the project.

“Associated businesses or individuals” means:

  • an officer, director or employee of your organization;
  • a member of the immediate family of an officer, director or employee of your organization;
  • a business in which an officer, director or employee of your organization, or a member of their immediate family, has a financial interest; or
  • a business which is related to, or associated or affiliated with, your organization.

Project activities must go beyond your organization’s normal activities, as FCR Loans does not fund your organization’s core, existing or ongoing activities.

Question 63 - Capital Assets: Will capital assets be among your planned expenditure with ESDC funding?

Explain how your project will benefit from the purchase of capital assets. A disposal plan for the capital assets should also be included.

A capital asset is any single or composite asset with a purchase value of more than $1,000 that is not physically incorporated into another product and that remains functional at the end of the project.

A composite asset is a collection of unique assets that form one identifiable functional unit, where all components are required for the asset to be functional. The collection of assets is treated as a single capital asset if the total cost of all individual items together is greater than $1,000 (before taxes).

For example, a personal computer composed of a hard drive, a monitor, a keyboard, a mouse and cabling is a composite capital asset. Four $300 chairs are not capital assets because each chair is functional on its own and as single units, fall below the established threshold of $1,000 (before taxes).

Question 64 - Not applicable for this CFP.

Part 4 - Declaration

In order for your application to be eligible for funding, it must be completed and signed by the official representative(s) of the applicant organization in accordance with the organization’s by-laws or other constituting documents.

Please ensure that your application is signed by an official, authorized representative of your organization. People with signing authority are normally one or more of the executive members of the board of directors (president, vice president, secretary or treasurer) and employees of the organization (chief executive officer, executive director, chiefs of finance or human resources).

Appendix A

Please use this section to complete questions from previous sections of the Application for Funding, and specify the question or section meant to be continued.

Notice to applicants

The information collected in your application will be used, and may be disclosed, for the purposes of assessing the merits of your application. As part of the assessment process, the information may be shared with external consultants, review committee members, officials in other departments, federal, provincial and/or territorial governments or Members of Parliament.

It may also be used and/or disclosed for policy analysis, research, and/or evaluation purposes. In order to conduct these activities, various sources of information under the custody and control of ESDC may be linked. However, these additional uses and/or disclosures of information will not impact your project.

In the event that the application contains personal information, the personal information will be administered in accordance with the Privacy Act and the provisions governing the protection of personal information that are set out in the Department of Employment and Social Development Act. The application is also subject to the Access to Information Act (“ATIA”). The ATIA provides every person with a right of access to information under the control of the department, subject to a limited set of exemptions. Instructions for obtaining access to this information are outlined in the government publication entitled Info Source, which is available at Info Source. Info Source may also be accessed on-line at any Service Canada Centre.

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