Applicant guide: Funding to support skills development and training-to-employment for Indigenous people - Skills and Partnership Fund
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Part 1 - Organization
A - Organization identification
Question 1 - Legal name
What is your organization’s legal name? The legal name is often:
- the name on your registration with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA); or
- the name used on cheques
Question 2 – Common name (if different from legal name)
What is the common name of your organization (if it is different from the legal name)?
Question 3 - Business or registration number
Do you have a 15-digit CRA business or registration number? If you do, what is it?
You can find your CRA business number on tax-related documents. You may also find it on other written statements from CRA.
To learn more, please visit the CRA website.
Question 4 - Organization type
You must choose 1 of the options below:
Individuals can not receive funding.
Question 5 – Organization category
If you chose Not-for-Profit in Question 4, choose 1 of the options below:
- Not-for-profit Band Councils
- NGOs with a focus to encourage employment
- Indigenous Not-for-Profit Groups
- Sector councils
- Associations of workers and/or employers
- International NGOs
- National NGOs
- Provincial NGOs
- Indigenous Educational Institution
- Local community, charitable, voluntary org.
If you chose Private in Question 4, choose 1 of the options below:
- Private Sector (Business, Private University, Banks, etc.)
- International Sector
- Private Band Councils
- Indian band corporations (profit basis)
- Businesses, bodies incorporated or unincorporated
- Private universities and colleges
If you chose Public in Question 4, choose 1 of the options below:
- International governmental organizations
- Public Sector (Including University/College/Vocational)
- Territorial governments
- Contributions to Provincial/Territorial
- Public Health
- Provincial governments and agencies
- Crown Corporation
- Public community colleges and vocational school
- Public degree-granting universities
- Public degree-granting colleges
- School board/Other educational institutions not elsewhere class
- Public degree-granting universities
- Municipal governments and agencies
Question 6 - Year established
When was your organization founded?
Questions 7 to 11 - Address
What is the address of your organization? Give a complete address in a format recognized by Canada Post. You can look at the Canada Post website for help.
Questions 12 to 14 - Telephone, fax and email
What is your organization’s telephone number, fax number (if it has one)? What is the email address?
Questions 15 to 19 - Mailing address (if different from above)
What is the mailing address of your organization (if it differs from above)?
Questions 20 and 21 - Telephone and fax
What is your organization’s telephone and fax numbers (if it differs from above)?
Question 22 - Organization’s mandate
To receive this funding you must be one of the following:
- incorporated for-profit Indigenous controlled organizations
- incorporated not-for-profit Indigenous controlled organizations
- Indigenous-controlled unincorporated organizations
- Indian Act bands
- band or tribal councils
- Indigenous self-government entities
If you do not tell us which of the above options apply, you will be screened out.
You must also attest that you are Indigenous-led.
This means that people who self-identify as Indigenous hold 51% of the leadership positions. This must be true at management and governance levels.
If this applies, write: “I am applying on behalf of an organization that is Indigenous-led”.
Finally, tell us about your organization’s main activities. What is your organization’s mandate and what are the goals of your proposed project? You may provide a link to your organization’s website.
B - Organization contact
Question 23 - First name and last name
Who is the main contact for us?
Question 24 - Position title
What is the job title of the person named in Question 23?
Question 25 - Preferred language
What language would your main contact prefer to use with us (English or French)?
Question 26 - Contact address
Does the address of your contact differ from the address above?
Questions 27 to 31 - Contact address (continued)
If you answered "different" in Question 26, what is the address of your contact?
Questions 32 and 33 - Telephone and fax
What are the telephone and fax numbers of your main contact? Please provide a telephone number where the person can be contacted during business hours.
Question 34 - Email address
What is the email address of your main contact person? We will send communications to this address.
Question 35 to 46 - Secondary contact
If we can’t reach the main contact, who else can we contact? Please provide their full name, telephone number where we can reach them during business hours, and their email address.
C - Organizational capacity
This section helps us decide if you can manage and carry out the proposed project.
Question 47 – Number of employees
Indicate the total number of employees you have.
Question 48 - Important transformations in the past 2 years
Let us know if there has been a:
- change in leadership in the board of directors
- change in leadership at the executive level
- large reduction, increase or turnover in staff
- merger or split; or
- change in mandate or main activities
Please tell us about any of the above changes that apply.
Question 49 - Please describe how your organization has the experience and expertise to carry out the proposed project activities. Please include any related past experience with ESDC and the results of the project
What you have done in the last 2 years that will help you carry out this project? Tell us about it. You can include past projects and what they achieved. If you have not delivered similar projects in the past, tell us about your ability to do so.
How will you manage the project? Describe the roles of key staff, use of contracted consultants, and contract oversight. Also describe the financial control and oversight measures, roles of the board of directors, partners and others. Don’t forget to describe the oversight committee, which will help to manage the project. The committee must include members from the applicant and partners.
Question 50 - Does your organization owe any amounts to the Government of Canada
If yes, how much? Use the spaces provided. Here is an example:
|Amount owing||Nature of amount owing||Department or agency to which money is owed|
|$10,000||Overpayment||Employment and Social Development Canada|
Question 51 - If an amount is owing, is a payment plan in place
Have you set up a plan to pay back the money?
If you answer "yes", your application can continue. But you have to tell us what you owe and how you are paying back the money.
Part 2 - Project
A - Project identification
Question 52 - Project title
Give a short title that describes your project.
Questions 53 and 54 - Planned project start and end dates
When do you plan on starting and ending your project?
Your project can start as early as November 2022. It can last up to 60 months (up to 5 years), ending no later than March 31st, 2028.
Funding decisions should be made in Fall 2022.
We can only pay for activities that have started after we sign the agreement.
B - Project description
We encourage you to refer to the SMART model:
- Specific: Describe the project and its goals in 1 or 2 sentences
- Measurable: Determine how you will know that you have achieved what you set out to do
- Achievable: It must be something you can complete within the timeframe
- Realistic: You should have the capacity and resources to accomplish this project
- Timely: You should have milestones throughout the length of the project
Question 55 - Project objectives (must link to the objectives of the program to which you are applying)
Describe how your project will:
- prepare and train Indigenous people for specific jobs that are demand driven
- demonstrate partnerships that will develop training to employment activities aimed at improving employment outcomes of Indigenous people
- leverage private sector, not for profit and/or public sector funding to maximize SPF investments
- include measures to ensure that potential employers provide a respectful and inclusive workplace for Indigenous employees
- consider the future of the project by:
- outlining a sustainability plan to continue the project after ESDC funding ends, or
- including a clear plan to end the project
- demonstrate that project goals are clear, rational, and can be achieved within the project budget and timeframe
If your project targets any of the SPF priority sectors, please provide a brief description in this question. The sectors are:
- Green Economy
- Information and Communications Technology
- Blue Economy
- Indigenous Public Sector
Question 56 - Project activities (must be split into clear steps)
Project activities are the steps you will take to meet your goals. They should be specific, realistic, relevant, and you should be able to measure them.
Describe each activity by:
- explaining how each activity supports the project goals you listed in Question 55
- listing them in a clear and realistic timeline
- identifying major milestones; and
- explaining how each one relates to the expected results of your project
There should be a clear link between the project activities and the project costs outlined in the project budget.
Your description of project activities should include something in all of these stages.
Please describe what kind of progress you expect to see on activities as the project continues. What milestones will you achieve at these intervals? What client progress do you expect?
Setup and recruitment
How will the project be set-up and how will you recruit staff and participants?
Describe the activities in detail. Be sure to outline the roles of partners for each activity.
Please describe how you will measure the success of your project. We will use this section to monitor your project’s progress.
Please describe what you will do to complete the project by the end-date. You must take into account disposal of any capital assets, and over-payments to the Department. For most projects, this phase should begin by the start of the last quarter.
Close-out occurs when the project has come to an end. It is not complete until the Department has processed all of the required details.
If you plan to continue the project without ESDC funding, please describe in detail what you will do to ensure your project can continue and be sustained in the long-term.
Reporting and evaluation
How will you report back to others on the results of the project outlined in question 57? If you decide to do a formal evaluation you can include it as an expense under SPF. In that case, you should include it in your budget to get paid back. If relevant, please describe the details of the formal evaluation here.
You will need to use a Data Collection System to collect, compile, and keep regularly updated, the Personal Information of each participant of the project. You will also need to provide that information to Canada for use in assessing and evaluating both the Program and the Recipient’s activities. The Data Collection System is an eligible expenditure, so please record it in the Budget detail template (PDF format, 47 KB) along with your other expenses.
If approved for funding, you will need to:
- provide all parties with a clear idea of the expected goals and results of their funding
- monitor project investments, including individuals, and third party agreements
- help third-party agreement holders implement the agreement
- take action to correct breaches in the agreement
- collect specific personal details about project clients
- upload these details every quarter
- submit financial claims to us every month or quarter; and
- submit a final report to us at the end of the project
With this in mind, please indicate how you will monitor the project over its length. How will you assess it, to know whether the project is on track? Explain how and when you will collect the data needed to measure the results. How you will review and adjust if needed?
Examples of eligible activities for funding under SPF are:
- job-specific education or training
- skills training and apprenticeships (for example, Red Seal certification)
- job retention counselling
- job supports including child care for parents participating in labour market programming
- targeted programming (for example, youth, women, persons with disabilities)
- innovative approaches to improve integration and retention of Indigenous employees, such as cultural competency training for employers; and
- innovative approaches to ensure project sustainability and outcomes for Indigenous employees such as hiring a sustainability officer
Question 57 - Expected results of the project
Project results must be specific, concrete and you need to be able to measure them. Use the indicators chosen in Question 58 and set targets for them. At a minimum, you should include:
- the number of clients you expect to serve (participate in training), and
- the number of clients who will be employed long-term (over 1 year) after training
You must also:
- show a clear link with the project goals; and
- show a clear link with the project activities
It is helpful to think of expected results in terms of what you expect your project to deliver (outcomes) and produce (outputs).
Outcomes are the short-term, medium-term and long‑term results that you expect the project to deliver. One objective may have multiple outcomes. Outcomes answer the questions, “how do we know the project is a success?”.
Outputs are direct products or services that you will produce to get the outcomes you want. They answer the question, “what will the project produce?”.
Note: By the end of your project, you must show marked progress towards meeting the expected results of your project.
Example of Outputs:
- developing a sustainability plan
- web-based cultural training courses
- meetings of the oversight committee
- providing employees for 25 jobs in Mining
Example of Outcomes:
- effective long-term planning for the project
- Indigenous employees feel safe and supported in the workplace
- effective project management over the length of the project
- Increased employment among Indigenous people
C - Project details
Question 58 - Does the project include results measurement indicators
Your answer to this question must be "yes". Show us that the ones you chose to measure include:
- both qualitative (descriptive) and quantitative (numerical) Results Measurement Indicators
You must include at least 1 indicator for each of your project’s expected results. You should have told us your expected results in Question 57. Indicators must be specific, concrete and you need to be able to measure them.
At minimum, you must include these indicators:
- number of participants served over the life of the project
- number of participants employed by the end of the project
Question 59 - Does this proposed project fit with your organization's other activities
- If “yes”, describe how your project relates to the work you are doing now.
Question 60 - Will any of the project activities be carried out in a different location than where your organization is located
If "yes", give the main address first. Then, add the other addresses.
If you have more than 5 locations, please continue your answer in Appendix A.
Question 61 - Is your project designed to benefit or involve people in English or French-language minority communities
If your project involves official language minority communities, you should answer “yes” to this question. Next, follow the steps in the form.
If you answer “No” to this question, it won’t cause your application to be rejected.
Question 62 - Will any other organizations, networks or partners be involved in carrying out the project
SPF partners are organizations that are part of the project and play a specific role contributing to the objectives of the project. Groups that support the project are not the same thing as partners. A supporter endorses a project, while a partner, including the applicant, contributes to the project and plays an active role.
Project partners may include:
- private and public sector employers
- Indigenous self-government entities
- Indigenous Skills and Employment Training (ISET) program agreement holders
- provincial and or other federal government departments; and
- other divisions of the applicant’s own organization
ESDC does not count as a partner for the purposes of SPF.
Partners must provide 25% or more of the total project value (cash or in-kind).
You must tell us about the role of each partner and what they are contributing to the project. You must also tell us how you will use each contribution. Tell us why each partner is relevant for your project. How will they help?
You must also have a plan to include partners on a committee charged with overseeing the project. Please describe this plan.
Have you partnered with an ISET program agreement holder, please answer yes or no. For either answer, please explain. If you answered yes, please outline how the partnership is complementary to achieving project objectives.
You must submit a partnership commitment letter from every partner except the applicant. If the primary partnership is between 2 divisions of the applicant’s own organization, you will need to submit a partnership commitment letter from the division you are partnering with. We would recommend using the template for the letter, but as long as you provide the required information, you don’t need to.
Question 63 - Does the project address the program's national, regional or local priorities
If your project is targeting one of the following sectors, we will award it more points. Select “National” in the application form.
- Green Economy
- Information and Communications Technology
- Blue Economy
- Indigenous Public Sector
Question 64 - Does your project include activities that are listed in the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada’s (IAAC) Regulations Designating Physical Activities established under the Canadian Impact Assessment Act 2019
Applicants need to verify if the above Act lists their proposed activities. Please visit the web site to access the list of Regulations Designating Physical Activities.
Please indicate “Yes” or “No”.
If the answer is “No”, no Impact Assessment is needed.
If the answer is “Yes”, then, the applicant must submit the project description to the IAAC for further review. The IAAC will determine if they need to conduct an Impact Assessment based on the project description.
Important: In the latter case, our funding will depend on the results.
Part 3 - Funding
A - Anticipated sources of funding
For SPF, partners must provide at least 25% of the total project value. We will award more points if partners are providing more than the 25% minimum. We will also give more points if partners are providing at least 10% of the total project value in cash.
Your project proposal must not request more than $10 million per year from ESDC. It must also not surpass $50 million over the length of the project. If your proposal surpasses either amount, we will not fund your project. ESDC reserves the right to partially fund a proposal.
The combined contributions from all sources must be equal to or less than 100% of eligible costs.
Question 65 - Source name
Please include the name of the organizations that will contribute funds and/or in-kind contributions to this project. You should list ESDC as the first source name and list other sources below.
Your partners must commit to their cash and in-kind contributions in writing. For each one, you will need to send us a partnership commitment letter as described in Question 62.
Question 66 - Source type
Use this list:
- applicant / recipient
- federal department
- foreign governments
- provincial and territorial governments, institutions and Crown Corporations
- municipal governments
- Indigenous organizations (including band councils, tribal councils and self-government entities)
- international organizations
- academic institutions, research organizations or institutes
- public health and social services institutions
- for‑profit organizations
- not-for-profit organizations; and
Question 67 - Cash
Please include the total amount of funding that parties involved in the project will provide.
Question 68 - In-kind ($ value)
In-kind contributions are goods or services that parties give to your project for free. All parties can contribute to the project, including your own. Contributions can include equipment, services or labour that you receive for free. We will recognize in-kind contributions if we can estimate what a person would pay for it.
If you expect any in-kind contributions, tell us how much they are worth.
To be eligible as an in-kind contribution, both of the following must be true:
- it must be necessary for the project to succeed
- the party who gives it to you provides a document outlining the commitment
Question 69 - Confirmed cash and in-kind
Indicate if you have confirmed the contributions from other sources.
You must submit signed copies of all Partner Commitment Letters to the Department with your proposal. We will screen out projects with no letters.
B - Budget
Give an estimate of your project’s costs. Also, let us know the general nature of the costs that all sources of funding will cover. Your costs must be eligible, demonstrate good value for money, and support your project activities.
You must use the Budget detail template (PDF format, 47 KB), when you submit your proposal. It is important that you use the same amounts you entered in ‘Part 3 – Funding’.
Question 70 - Cost category
Outline your project budget using the Budget detail template (PDF format, 47 KB). The total administration costs, including those of third party organizations, should not exceed 15% of the total ESDC contribution.
Eligible project costs may include:
- project administration and overhead costs such as wages and benefits, rental of office space, or telephones directly related to the project. This includes costs associated with the development of a sustainability plan
- equipment rental such as computers, or office equipment directly related to the project
- costs related to clients such as apprenticeship training, technical training, on-site training
- income support for clients such as allowances, wage subsidies, accommodation and transportation, and
- professional fees for services provided in support of Indigenous individuals and families (including services provided by Indigenous Elders or traditional healers)
Ineligible costs may include:
- capital improvements, such as the construction or renovation of buildings (other than repairs or renovations to support the participation of persons with disabilities), and
- administrative costs not directly related to the administration of the project
Note: the agreement holder must award all contracts over $25K through a competitive process.
Below are examples of cost breakdowns for budget items:
- administrative assistant: 20$/hour × [1 (number of hours) charged to the project per week) × (104 (number of weeks)] = $2,080
- mandatory employment related costs (MERCs) at 15% (or other) of salary ($2,080) = $312
- benefits: $200
- total wages: $2,592
- professional fees:
- consultant: $400/day × [1 (number of days) charged to the project × (104 (number of weeks)] = $41,600
Questions 71 to 73 - Planned spending ($) (ESDC and other, cash other, in-kind other)
Give the total planned spending from all sources, including us. The amounts should align with those in ‘Section A: Anticipated sources of funding’.
“Other” means a cash or in-kind contribution from sources other than us.
C - Budget details
Question 74 - Associated businesses or individuals
Check all statements that apply to your planned spending of ESDC’s funding.
In carrying out the project, you may have to buy goods or services you need from contractors. You may also contract out to third parties (outside providers) to carry out part of the project activities.
“Associated businesses or individuals” means:
- an officer, director or employee working with you, or a member of their direct family
- a business in which an officer, director or employee working with you, or a member of your direct family, has a financial interest; or
- a business connected to you
Question 75 - Capital assets: Will capital assets be among your planned expenditures with ESDC funding
Answer “yes” or “no”.
If “yes”, explain how your project will benefit from buying capital assets.
A capital asset is any single or composite asset that costs more than $5,000 (before taxes). A capital asset is not part of another product. After the project, you will not have used up the asset.
A composite asset is a group of assets that form 1 unit. This unit only works as a whole. A group of assets is a single capital asset if the total cost is more than $5,000 (before taxes).
For example, a composite capital asset could include:
- a personal computer with a hard drive
- a monitor
- a keyboard
- a mouse; and
- the relevant cables
We do not consider 20 chairs, that each cost $300, capital assets. This is because each chair works on its own and each individual chair cost less than $5,000 (before taxes).
Question 76 - Further budget details
Provide a detailed breakdown of your total eligible project costs over the life of the project. Please breakdown your budget by activity and cost category.
- explain how you intend to use the funds. Costs must demonstrate value for money, and support the proposed project activities and scope of work; and
- include a complete Budget detail template (PDF format, 47 KB)
Part 4 - Attestation
An official representative with the authority to submit proposals on behalf of your organization must attest that:
- they have the authority to submit the proposal
- certify that the details provided are true; and
- they have read and understood the program’s requirements
In order to do this, they must:
- check the 3 boxes of the attestation; and
- provide their name, title and the date
As this is an attestation, we do not require a signature.
You can also use this section to add information to previous sections of the application. If you do, please record the question number you are adding to.
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, such 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 Information about programs and information holdings, which may also be accessed online at any Service Canada Centre.
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