Apply for funding for community-based projects (small grants) under the New Horizons for Seniors Program (up $5,000)

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

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Application period

Open May 15, 2019 to June 21, 2019 at 11:59 am (Pacific daylight time)

We anticipate that projects could start as early as winter 2020.

Description of the funding for community-based projects

The New Horizons for Seniors Program (NHSP) is a federal grants and contributions program that supports projects designed by and for seniors who make a difference in the lives of others and their communities. Through the NHSP, the Government of Canada encourages seniors to share their knowledge, skills and experiences to the benefit of others.

This application process is intended to fund projects up to $5,000 that are led or inspired by seniors, volunteer-based and supported by their communities.

The program provides funding for projects that encourage seniors to play an important role in their communities by volunteering, participating in and leading community activities. The program also provides funds to help organizations make necessary modifications or repairs to their facilities, or to purchase replacement equipment and furnishings, to enable their continued use for programs and activities for seniors.

In support of the Government of Canada’s commitment to focus on vulnerable populations, and particularly, increasing the capacity of organizations serving vulnerable populations, a small grant pilot project was created to improve access to funding. Eligible organizations that have not received funding for the last 5 years can receive up to $5,000 per project.

Employment Social Development Canada (ESDC) will consider the project eligible for funding only if it is clearly linked to a NHSP program objective. The program objectives are:

  • promoting volunteerism among seniors and other generations
  • engaging seniors in the community through the mentoring of others
  • expanding awareness of elder abuse, including financial abuse
  • supporting the social participation and inclusion of seniors
  • providing capital assistance for new and existing community projects and/or programs for seniors

A Project for which capital assistance is being requested is eligible as long as the project will support new or existing community programs and activities for seniors. Therefore, in addition to having capital assistance as an objective, projects must also meet one of the first 4 program objectives. In this case, it is mandatory that you select one of the first 4 program objectives listed.

In keeping with the Government of Canada’s commitments, ESDC established 3 national priorities for the NHSP Community-based projects in fiscal year 2019 to 2020:

  • preventing elder abuse and fraud, including measures to reduce crimes and harm against seniors
  • supporting healthy aging in community, addressing dementia, including supports and intergenerational housing
  • counteracting ageism in the workplace to promote labour market retention of seniors

Projects and activities related to these priorities that can be supported would include awareness, information sharing, and referrals to service providers. Projects must align with one of the national priorities to be eligible for funding, as well you will need to meet one of the 5 NHSP objectives, as listed above.

The Government of Canada is currently accepting applications, from organizations interested in receiving up to $5,000 per funding year in grant funding from the New Horizon for Seniors Program for projects that are up to 12 months in duration.

Three funding options have been established that will allow organizations to pursue their activities and build their capacity. Project activities must align with one of the following options:

  • IT equipment upgrade
  • capital assistance for current or new activities
  • will promote volunteerism to increase an organization’s capacity

Notice to organizations in Quebec

This Call for Proposals was discussed with Quebec’s Secrétariat aux aînés, consistent with the Protocol of Agreement which establishes the terms and conditions of cooperation between the government of Canada and the government of Quebec for implementation of the NHSP.


Your organization must meet the eligibility criteria listed below to apply for this program. Otherwise, your application will not be further considered.

The application must be submitted by an eligible organization:

  • non-profit organization
  • municipal government
  • provincial and territorial governmentFootnote 1, institution and Crown Corporation
  • Indigenous organization (including band council, tribal council and self-government entity)
  • research organization or institute
  • educational institution
  • public health and social services institutionFootnote 1
  • coalition, network or ad hoc committee
  • for-profit organizationFootnote 2

The applications must also meet the following criteria:

  • to be eligible your organization should have not received funding within the last 5 years
  • the application is received by June 21, 2019 at 11:59 am (Pacific daylight time)
  • the project does not exceed 12 months in duration
  • the amount requested from ESDC does not exceed $5,000 including applicable taxes
  • the project contributes to improving the social inclusion of seniors
  • seniors will lead the project or will play a vital role in its planning and/or delivery

How we assess your application

This section describes how we will assess your application to determine its overall quality and merit.

  1. Project objectives
    What is the purpose of the project?
    • the application clearly identifies the goal of and the need for the project and provides a rationale as to how it will address the identified need
  2. National priorities
    How does your project meet one of the national priorities?
    • preventing elder abuse and fraud, including measures to reduce crimes and harm against seniors
    • supporting healthy aging in community, addressing dementia, including supports and intergenerational housing
    • counteracting ageism in the workplace to promote labour market retention of seniors
  3. Senior leadership and involvement
    How will projects be led and/or inspired by seniors?
    • for instance, seniors of your community will be involved in the planning, development, implementation of the proposed project
  4. Benefit to seniors
    How will seniors will benefit from the project through volunteering and participation opportunities, including leadership roles?
    • it will be important to demonstrate how seniors will actively take advantage of the proposed project, by their involvement as leaders, volunteers and participants
  5. Benefit to communities
    How will the project have a positive impact on the overall community?
    • since the program encourages seniors to play an important role in their community to make a difference in the lives of others in their communities, it is important to describe what will be the benefits for your community to implement your project
  6. Cost effectiveness
    • project cost are reasonable and support project activities and they do not exceed the maximum allowed
  7. Past results
    • The Department will review all files associated with your organization to verify if there is documented evidence from previous agreements with the Department that would render your application ineligible (for example, financial irregularities, health and safety concerns, or past project results). The Department may consult with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) on past financial irregularities.

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 decision of ineligibility of your new application.

ESDC will deliver a final funding decision in winter 2020.

Steps to apply

Application period

Deadline to submit your application is June 21, 2019 at 11:59 am (Pacific daylight time).

Video - How to apply for funding

Apply by email

Where to email your application

New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island
General Delivery email box:

General Delivery email box:
1 866 233-3194 (TTY: 1 800 255-4786)

General Delivery Email Box:

Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Nunavut, Saskatchewan, Northwest Territories and Yukon
General Delivery email box:

Apply by mail

  • Read the Funding for community-based small grants projects: Applicant guide for this funding process to complete your application form as it describes specific information you need to provide for each question of the form.
  • Once you have read the Application guide, complete your Standard Grant Application for Funding form electronically or by hand. You can mail your funding application by mail [postmarked] no later than June 21, 2019 at 11:59 am (Pacific daylight time) to the respective regional address below. Mail documents to the address below.

Below is a list of addresses where you should mail your New Horizons for Seniors Program Application for Funding.

New Brunswick
New Horizons for Seniors Program
Government of Canada
P.O. Box 12000
633 Queen Street
Fredericton, NB E3B 5G4

Newfoundland and Labrador
New Horizons for Seniors Program
Government of Canada
P.O. Box 12051
St. John's, NL A1B 3Z4

Nova Scotia
New Horizons for Seniors Program
Government of Canada
P.O. Box 1800
Halifax, NS B3J 3V1

Prince Edward Island
New Horizons for Seniors Program
Government of Canada
P.O. Box 8000
Charlottetown, PE C1A 8K1

New Horizons for Seniors Program
Government of Canada - Service Canada
400-1001 de Maisonneuve Blvd East, 4th Floor
Montreal, QC H2L 4P9

New Horizons for Seniors Program
Government of Canada
P.O. Box 538, Station Don Mills
North York, ON M3C 0N9

Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Saskatchewan and Yukon
New Horizons for Seniors Program
Government of Canada
270, 220-4 Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2G 4X3

Application process

We recommend that you read the instructions carefully before you start completing your application. Not doing so could result in an incomplete application and its rejection from this process. This web page includes the following information:

  • the application, eligibility and assessment process
  • details on how to best provide the required information

After you have applied

You will receive an acknowledgment of receipt of your application:

  • if you submitted your application by email, you will receive an automatic email acknowledgment to the email address you used to submit the application
  • if you submitted your application by mail, you will receive an acknowledgment by email within 21 days of its receipt. The acknowledgment will be sent to the email address you provided in your application

Contact us

If you have any questions and/or need help with this application, send your request to the general delivery email box indicated above, as per your respective province/territory, or call our toll-free number 1-800-277-9914 and select "0". For people using a teletypewriter device (TTY) call 1-800-255-4786. We will put you in touch with the appropriate NHSP representative who can discuss your application.


Capital assets: non-consumable items that will continue to exist after the funding period ends, such as equipment, electronics, furniture, appliances, etc. A capital asset may be a single item or a group of items forming one functional unit. For example, the components of a public address system for seniors' events includes an amplifier ($600), 2 speakers ($150 apiece), a microphone ($150), stand and cables ($100), which equal $1,150 since they are a collection of items that are designed to function together. Capital assets have a purchase or lease value of more than $1,000 before taxes. Capital assets do not include construction or renovations (see capital expenditures, below).

Confirmed funding: the amount of money or other in-kind contribution that an individual or organization guarantees for your project.

CRA Business Number: The Business Number (BN) is a unique number the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) assigns your business as a tax ID. It is a 15 digit number that is unique to your business and that is used when dealing with the federal government. (for example, 123456789 RP 0001).

Honoraria: small token payments made to express gratitude or to symbolize respect. Such payments are not used as an alternative to a service contract or agreement, professional fees, or as a replacement for salaries or wages.

Impact: the improvement or change in the community that is attributable to a project’s activities.

In-kind contributions: non-monetary goods or services that may be contributed to a project by the applicant organization or other organizations or partners, for which reimbursement will not be requested. In-kind support may include donated equipment, services or labour necessary for the proposed project that would otherwise have to be purchased.

Mandatory Employment Related Costs (MERCs): payments an employer is required by law to make in respect of its employees such as: Employment Insurance and Canada Pension Plan/Québec Pension Plan premiums, workers’ compensation premiums, vacation pay and Employer Health Tax; and benefits which refer to payments an employer is required to make in respect of its employees by virtue of company policy or a collective agreement.

Organization type: The organization type could be one of the following 3 examples; Not-For-Profit Sector, Private Sector and Public Sector.

Organization’s primary activities: The main activities of your organization or business (goods and/or services), including your mission, your mandate and objectives. Explain how your organization serves seniors (if applicable). Ensure to include, if your organization offers accessible communication/information technology in your community.

Outputs: direct programs or activities produced to generate the desired outcomes. Several activities may be undertaken to produce one output.

Outcomes: the changes, whether short-term, intermediate or long-term, that is expected to occur as the result of a project. The changes may be to the community in general, to an organization, or to the lives of specific members of the community (individuals or groups). There may be more than 1 outcome directly related to a project’s objective. Outcomes define a project’s impact and success.

Professional fees: costs of services provided by someone who is not an employee. Professional fees often are associated with a service contract or external consultant, such as external facilitators, presenters, trainers, researchers, etc. Professional fees do not include staff wages, mandatory employment-related costs, honoraria or the costs to administer the project.

Project objective: the description of what the project will achieve when completed. The objective is specific and measurable, and must meet time, budget, and quality constraints.

Rural and remote communities: As per Statistics Canada, a rural area is a community with a population of less than 1,000 and a population density below 400 inhabitants per square mile and a remote area is located in a “no metropolitan influenced zone.” If you are uncertain if your community is rural or remote, please contact Service Canada. Note that Service Canada will verify your classification during assessment.

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