Apply for funding for the Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Quality Improvement Projects

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

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Application period

Current status: Closed

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.

Learn more about other funding opportunities.

You were able to apply between February 3, 2021 and April 14, 2021, at 2:00 pm Eastern Daylight Time (EDT).

Description of the funding

You can submit 1 application. If you submit more than 1, we will only review the first one.

If you want to know more, please see the IELCC program page and the IELCC Framework.


We will fund projects that aim to achieve at least one of the following objectives:


To apply, you must meet all of the following conditions.

Application for funding

Eligible applicants

Note for organizations in Québec

Some applicants in the province of Quebec are subject to the Act respecting the Ministère du Conseil exécutif (R.S.Q. c. M-30) of the Government of Quebec. These applicants are eligible to submit a proposal. However, if we accept your project, you will also need to obtain the approval of the Government of Quebec before we can fund your project.

Eligible projects

How we assess your application

If your project is eligible, we will assess it as follows.

Organizational capacity

Project relevance

Project activities

Project results


Additional funding considerations

We may give additional consideration to projects that have partnerships with one or more of the following:

Steps to apply

Gather your supporting documents

Decide how to apply (email or mail)

Apply by mail or email

  1. Read the Applicant guide to help you complete your application form. This guide will help you fill out the form
  2. Complete the Application for funding (EMP5523) form
  3. Print and sign only the signature page
  4. Send your complete application package by email or by mail to:
    • mailing address:
      Indigenous Early Learning Child Care (IELCC) submissions
      Coordination Unit mailstop 402
      National Grants & Contributions Delivery Centre (ESDC)
      140 Promenade du Portage Phase IV Floor 4
      Gatineau QC  K1A 0J9

After you’ve applied

We will review your application. We expect to make funding decisions in June 2021.

By email

We will automatically confirm receipt by email.

By mail

We will confirm receipt within 21 days.

Contact us

If you need to contact us, you can reach us here:

We will answer questions sent before April 13, 2021 at 5:00 p.m. (EDT).

Information sessions

We will hold information sessions on the following dates: February 18, March 3, March 24, and April 1. You can join online or by phone. If you want to join, send an email to We will tell you how to do so.

In your email, let us know if you prefer English or French. Also, let us know if you need any special accommodation to attend.


Early learning and child care (ELCC)
Activities designed to support the learning and development of children less than 6-years old.

Indigenous organizations
Organizations that both:

Indigenous Peoples
A collective name for the first peoples of North America and their descendants. Canadian law recognizes 3 distinct peoples: First Nations, Inuit, and Métis.

Groups or people that you collaborate with and that contribute to the project.

Special Needs
Includes any physical, social, emotional, behavioral, or learning needs that need unique accommodation.

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