Applicant guide: Become a Western Intermediary under the Supporting Black Canadian Communities Initiative
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Current status: Closed
This call for proposals ran from March 8, 2021 to April 7, 2021 at 3:00 pm 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.
You can apply between March 8, 2021 to April 7, 2021 at 3:00 pm Eastern daylight time (EDT).
Description of the funding
Eligible organizations in Western Canada or the Territories can apply for up to $1.4 million for a period of 3 years.
We will select one organization, located in Western Canada or the Territories, that will act as an intermediary to:
- launch calls for proposals
- sign funding agreements with eligible organizations
- provide support to Black-led not-for-profit organizations across Canada
This call for proposals will provide funding to a high capacity organization that will support grassroots organizations to address the needs and improve the lives of Black Canadians by:
- engaging black communities across Canada in both official languages
- distributing funding using transparent processes to grassroots organizations
- monitoring and reporting on the use of that funding
- evaluating and reporting on results
To apply, you must meet all the following eligibility criteria:
Your organization must:
- be a not-for-profit organization
- be located in Western Canada or the Territories
- indicate that your organization is Black-led:
- minimum two-thirds of the leadership positions, at all levels of your organization’s management and governance, are held by people who self-identify as Black
- have a mandate to serve Black Canadian communities
- be in operation for at least 6 years
- have audited financial statements for the last 2 years (2018 and 2019)
Your project must meet all of the following criteria:
- run no longer than 36 months
- must end by March 31, 2024
- request cannot exceed $1.4 million for a period of 3 years
Note: We will only consider one application per organization.
How we assess your application
We will review your application in 3 steps by:
- screening for eligibility against the mandatory eligibility requirements and in questions 3 to 9 and 22 in the applicant guide
- assessing how project meets the program objectives and in questions 49, 55 to 58, and 69 to 71 in the applicant guide and the budget detail template
- considering other criteria to select the Western Intermediary and in question 49 in the applicant guide
Note: It is important to submit a complete application. Make sure you have all the documents you need before you apply. If your application is incomplete, we will notify you by email. You will have 15 business days to submit the missing information. If your application is not complete by that time, we will reject it from the process.
Screening for eligibility
We will assess your project only if all of the following eligibility requirements are met and the necessary documentation has been provided:
- application is received by the deadline
- organization is eligible:
- not-for-Profit (questions 3, 4 and 5 in the applicant guide)
- operating for at least 6 years (question 6 in the applicant guide )
- located in Western Canada or the Territories (questions 7, 8 and 9 in the applicant guide)
- organization indicated “yes” to the eligibility questions on Black-led organization and mandate serves Black Canadian communities (question 22 in the applicant guide)
- application is complete, including:
- all mandatory information (questions 3 to 9, and question 22 in the applicant guide)
- completed budget detail template and part 3 of the application form
- audited financial statements from the last 2 years (2018 and 2019)
- completed attestation (part 4 of the application form)
- project activities are eligible
We will assess your application based on the following criteria:
- Describe your organization’s capacity to ensure sound financial management
- Describe your existing community network and partnerships that would demonstrate your ability to carry out this project
- Demonstrate your effective governance
- Demonstrate your experience in reporting on results
Describe how your organization will support grassroots organizations to address the needs and improve the lives of Black Canadians.
- Describe how your organization will establish partnerships with other Black-led organizations in Canada
- Describe how your organization will manage and redistribute funding to grassroots organizations to support Black Canadian communities
- Provide clear and relevant description of the project activities
- Provide clear and feasible timelines to complete the project activities
Project impact and results
- Describe what your project will achieve and how it aligns with the objective of this call for proposals
- Describe how Black-led grassroots organizations in Canada will benefit from your organization serving as a Western Intermediary
- Describe how your project will impact the lives of Black Canadians
- Outline how your organization plans to collect, measure and report on your project’s results
- Provide a brief and clear justification of how you intend to use the money
- Demonstrate that your project costs are reasonable, detailed and support the project activities
- Your administrative costs can be no more than 25% of the total funding by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), which is $1.4 million
Additional assessment considerations
In selecting the Western Intermediary, we will give further consideration to proposals from organizations that currently serve communities in multiple geographical locations.
Steps to apply
Gather your supporting documents
- completed application form
- 2 audited financial statements for the past 2 years (2018 and 2019)
- completed budget detail template
Apply by email or mail
- Read the applicant guide to complete your application form. This guide includes details and more information for each question of the form
- Complete the application form and budget detail template online or by hand
Tips for PDF application form
Our application form uses PDF form technology. You must have a PDF reader installed to use the form correctly. There are several readers available on the Internet for free that support our form:
- Adobe Reader 8 or higher, for example:
- Adobe Acrobat DC Reader
- Foxit Reader
Downloading the application form
- Make sure that you have Adobe Acrobat Reader 8 or higher or Foxit Reader installed on your system
- Select the application form
- When prompted to open or save the form, select the down arrow on the Save button, and select ”Save as”
- Select your folder location and save (file type must be PDF)
- Reopen the form from your computer:
- Select the “Open with” option
- Choose option to open with either Adobe Acrobat Reader or Foxit
- Make sure that the form opens in one of the Reader Softwares (Adobe or Foxit), by looking at the top of your screen. For example, you should see:
- ESDC-EMP 5679.pdf (secured) – Adobe Acrobat Reader DC, or
- ESDC-EMP 5679.pdf (secured) – Foxit PhantomPDF
- Begin inputting and save your information
- Before submitting your application make sure that the application form is completed and all information saved properly
Moving within a form
To move from one field to the next on the form, hit “Tab”. This ensures that you do not accidently skip over any fields.
Forms that perform calculations
Some sections of the form perform calculations based on the amounts you enter and will automatically calculate totals in the appropriate fields.
You are responsible for the completeness and accuracy of any information submitted. Please double-check all data you enter.
Beware that these issues will impact your form
- Not using recommended reader software. For example:
- old versions of Adobe
- preview reader on a Mac
- Completing the form in a browser
- Send your complete application package by email or by mail:
- by email to:
- by mail to:
Supporting Black Canadian Communities Initiative
Coordination unit mailstop 402
National Grants and Contributions Delivery Centre (ESDC)
140 Promenade du Portage Phase IV Floor 4
Gatineau QC K1A 0J9
- by email to:
If you cannot email the required documents, you can send them by mail to the address above. In your email, tell us if you are sending other documents by mail.
Note: We will only consider complete application packages.
After you have applied
We will review your application and decide if you are selected to become the Western intermediary.
We will select the successful organization by summer 2021.
We will confirm reception of your application by email.
We will confirm reception of your application by email within 21 calendar days.
We will use the email address you provided in your application.
If you have questions email us at EDSC.ACNC-SBCC.ESDC@canada.gc.ca.
We will answer questions sent before April 7, 2021 at 12:00 pm EDT.
We will hold information sessions in mid-March 2021. You can participate online or by teleconference. If you are interested, send an email to EDSC.ACNC-SBCC.ESDC@canada.gc.ca.
In your email, indicate if you would like to attend an information session in English or French. Also, specify if you need accommodations.
We will provide you with the instructions on how and when to attend.
- Have a mandate to serve Black Canadians in Canada
- Minimum two-thirds of the leadership positions, at all levels of your organization’s management and governance, are held by people who self-identify as Black
- A high capacity Black-led organization
- Support to grassroots, non-profit community organizations
- Build grassroots organizations’ capacity to address the needs and improve the lives of Black Canadians
- Distribute funding to grassroots organizations through open and transparent processes
Western Canada and the Territories
Include the provinces of:
- British Columbia
The Territories include:
- Northwest Territories
Questions of the application form
Part 1: Organization
Section A. Organization identification
Question 1: Legal name
What is your organization's legal name? The legal name is usually:
- the name on your registration with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) or provincial/territorial equivalent
- the name used on funding cheques, bank accounts, etc.
Question 2: Operating name (if different from legal name)
What is the operating (or common) name of your organization (if it differs from the legal name)?
Question 3: Business or registration number (mandatory)
What is your 15-digit CRA business number? (For example, 123456789 RR 0001).
For registered charities and not-for-profit organizations, what is your registration number?
You can find your CRA business number on tax-related documents or written communications from the CRA.
If you do not have a CRA business number or a charity or not-for-profit registration number, provide one of the following documents:
- if incorporated:
- a copy of letters of patents
- articles of incorporation
- certificate of incorporation
- memorandum of association
- your rules, by-laws, or constitution
- if not incorporated:
- a copy of your rules
- council resolutions, or
Question 4: Organization type (mandatory)
Your organization must be a:
- not-for-profit or charitable entity
Note: For the purpose of this call for proposals (CFP), these following organizations are not eligible:
- private or for profit organizations
- provincial or territorial governments
Question 5: Organization category (mandatory)
Choose one of the following:
- Associations of workers and employers
- Local community, charitable, voluntary organizations
- Non-governmental organizations with a focus to encourage employment
- National non-governmental organizations
Question 6: Year established (mandatory)
What year was your organization established?
Your organization must have experience in providing ongoing programs and services for at least 6 years.
Questions 7 to 11: Organization address (mandatory)
What is your organization's address? Give a complete address in a format recognized by Canada Post.
Note: Your organization must be located and deliver programs and services in Western Canada or the Territories.
Questions 12 to 14: Telephone, fax and email
What is your organization's telephone number, fax number (if it has one) and email address?
Questions 15 to 19: Mailing address (if different from organization address)
What is the mailing address of your organization (if it differs from your organization's physical address)?
Note: If different from the organization address, the mailing address must be in the Western Canada or the Territories.
Questions 20 and 21: Telephone and fax
What are your organization's telephone and fax numbers (if different from your organization’s telephone and fax numbers)?
Question 22: Black-led organization (This question is mandatory)
A) Is your organization’s mandate to serve Black Canadian communities?
For this question, you must check “yes”. We will not consider your application, if your mandate does not serve Black Canadian communities.
B) Are two-thirds of the leadership positions, at all levels of your organization’s management and governance, held by people who self-identify as Black?
For this question, you must check “yes”. We will only consider your application, if you meet the two-thirds requirement for leadership positions.
An organization’s leadership and governance can include:
- board of directors
- volunteer committee
- advisory board or committee
- eldership circle, etc.
Section B. Organization contact
Question 23: First name and last name
Provide the name of the person in your organization we can contact for the proposed project.
Question 24: Position title
What is the title of the contact person named in question 23?
- executive director
Question 25: Preferred language of communication
What official language would your contact person prefer to use in written and spoken communications?
Question 26: Organization contact (address)
Does the address of your contact person differ from the organization address or the organization mailing address in Section A?
Questions 27 to 31: Contact address
If you answered “different” in question 26, what is the address of your contact person?
Note: If different from organization address, your primary contact address must in Western Canada or the Territories.
Questions 32 and 33: Telephone and fax
What are the telephone and fax numbers of your contact person?
Question 34: Email address
What is the email address of your contact person? We will send all communications to the contact person at this e-mail address.
Question 35 to 46: Secondary contact
If we cannot reach the main contact, who else can we contact? Provide its full name, telephone number where we can reach during business hours and email address.
Section C. Organizational capacity
Question 47: How many employees does your organization currently have?
Indicate the total number of employees in your organization.
Question 48: Has your organization undergone any important transformations in the past 2 years?
Important transformations or major changes can include, but is not limited to:
- a change in leadership in the board of directors or at the executive level
- a large 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”, tell us about the changes.
Question 49: Describe how your organization has the experience and expertise to carry out the proposed project activities
You must provide with your application for funding, 2 audited financial statement for the past 2 years (2018 and 2019). This information is mandatory to make an eligibility determination.
You must also clearly:
- describe your organization’s capacity to ensure sound financial management. This could include a description of:
- how you manage project funding received from any level of government
- your policies and procedures for your organization’s operations, such as:
- accounts payable
- accounts receivable
- your annual budget, including:
- all sources and uses of fund
- your fiscal planning process, including:
- assessment of risks
- insurance coverage needs
- appropriate risk management procedures
- describe your existing community network and partnerships that would demonstrate your ability to carry out this project. This could include active coalitions, networks or committees that your organization takes part in
- demonstrate your effective governance. This could include details on your Board of directors, for example:
- frequency of meeting. For example, quarterly
- direction provided to the executive team on the overall operations of the organization
- demonstrate your experience in reporting on results. This could include:
- information on the public Annual General Meeting, your organization hosts
- description on your evaluation and reporting plan to measure the impact of your organization’s work and results
In selecting the Western Intermediary, further consideration will be given to organizations that currently serve communities in multiple geographic locations.
Question 50: Does your organization owe any amount 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. However, you have to tell us what you owe and how you are paying back the money.
Part 2: Project
Section 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 to start and end your project.
We expect to select the successful organization in summer 2021.
We expect that the intermediary start once the funding agreement is in place.
You must commit to serve as the Western intermediary until March 31, 2024.
You must start your project activities after we approve your project and a signed funding agreement is in place. We can only pay for activities that have started after we sign the agreement.
Section B. Project description
Question 55: Project objectives (must clearly link to the program goals)
You must describe how your organization will support grassroots organizations to address the needs and improve the lives of Black Canadians.
Question 56: Project activities (give clear steps for each one)
You must describe how your organization will:
- establish partnerships with other Black-led organizations in Canada
- manage and redistribute funding to grassroots organizations to support Black Canadian communities
You must also describe the steps that your organization will take to meet the objective of the project, by providing:
- clear and relevant description of the project activities
- clear and feasible project timelines
Eligible activities may include:
- set up project infrastructure
- hiring and supervising staff and contractors
- develop a work plan
- hold regular meetings with partners
- develop a plan of action for the community of practice disseminate information and knowledge by actively engaging stakeholders. For example, share:
- best practices
- training guides
- public education materials
- identify data collection methods, data sources and data analysis methods. For example:
- key informant interviews
- focus groups
- attendance tracking
- verbal feedback
- develop and implement a sustainability plan
- develop a communication plan including the Call for Proposals
- constitute Selection Committee
- hold community of practice sessions and webinars for grassroots organizations
- develop an evaluation toolkit for sub-agreement holders
- put in place sub-agreement holders
- collaborate with sub-agreement holders
- represent the project in the community
- monitor activities
Question 57: Expected results of the project
You must clearly describe:
- what your project will achieve and how it aligns with the objective of the CFP
- how Black-led grassroots organizations in Canada will benefit from your organization serving as a Western Intermediary
- how your project will impact the lives of Black Canadians
Question 58: Does the project include indicators to measure results?
You must outline how you plan to collect, gather, measure and report on your project’s results.
Question 59: Does this proposed project fit with your organization's other activities?
If “yes”, describe how your proposed project relates to the work your organization is doing now.
Question 60: Will your project benefit or involve people in English or French language minority communities?
We commit to enhance the vitality of the English and French linguistic minorities in Canada. We support and assist their development and foster 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 Québec and French-speaking communities established outside the province of Québec.
Answering “no” to this question will not invalidate your application.
If your proposed project involves official language minority communities, you should answer “yes” to this question. Complete the question following the instructions in the application form.
Question 61: Will any other organizations, networks or partners be involved in carrying out the project?
If you secure partnership(s), you must provide:
- information about the partner(s):
- description of how the partner(s) is a Black-led organization
- type of organization, such as:
- how the partner(s) will participate in the project (time or resources)
Question 62: Does your project include activities that are listed in Impact Assessment Agency of Canada (IAAC) Regulations Designating Physical Activities established under the Canadian Impact Assessment Act 2019?
Not applicable for this funding. Answer “no” to this question.
Part 3: Funding
Section A. Anticipated sources of funding
Contributions from other sources other than the Government of Canada are not required for this CFP.
However, if you receive cash or in-kind contributions from sources other than the Government of Canada, give details in your Application for Funding. See instructions below.
Question 63: Source name
List Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) as the first source name and include amount requested.
If you are receiving contributions from other sources, include the names of all the organizations that provide cash and/or in-kind contributions to this project.
Question 64: Source type
For each organization providing contributions to your project, indicate the type of organization using the following list:
- non-profit organizations
- provincial and territorial governments, institutions and Crown Corporations
- Indigenous organizations including:
- band councils
- tribal councils
- self-government entities
- international organizations
- coalitions, networks or committees
- research organizations or institutes
- educational institutions
- public health and social services institutions
Question 65: Cash contributions
Tell us how much in cash contributions you will receive.
Question 66: In-kind contributions
If you are getting a donation (in-kind), tell us how much it is worth.
To be eligible as a donation:
- you must need it for the project to succeed
- the organization who gives it to you also gives you a document showing its commitment
Donations are goods or services people or organizations give for free. Your organization, other organizations or partners can donate. Donations include equipment, services or labour that you receive for free.
We will recognize in-kind donations only if we can estimate what a person would pay for the contribution.
Question 67: Confirmed cash and in-kind
Check the box if the contributions are confirmed.
Note: If we select your organization, we will ask you to provide a letter from the other source confirming the contribution.
Section B. Budget
List each activity and its associated cost in your application form and budget detail template. The amounts must be the same in both document. Your costs must be reasonable and support your project activities.
Question 68: Cost category
Use the Budget Detail Template to provide necessary details to costs categories.
List each activity and its associated cost. Costs must be reasonable and directly relate to your project activities.
We can only pay for the following eligible costs:
- wages and mandatory employment costs
- costs related to activities that build/create networks and or partnerships, including:
- collaboration activities among community organizations
- capital costs, such as:
- equipment purchases
- renovation or retrofit
- fees for professional services including:
- project management
- performance measurement
- marketing and advertising
- evaluation and data collection activities
- other administrative costs associated with the project:
- information technology (IT)
- head office support
Examples of ineligible costs:
- the purchase of real property
- consultant fees for individuals who are also receiving a salary from your organization or its partner
- costs incurred to prepare the proposal
- entertainment costs
- expenditures outside the start and end dates of the contribution agreement
- fines or penalties
Questions 69 to 71: Planned spending (dollar)
Give the total planned spending from all sources, including Employment and Social Development Canada. The amounts should align with those that you put in Section A. Anticipated sources of funding of your Application for funding.
"Other" means a cash or in-kind contribution from other sources other than Employment and Social Development Canada.
Section C. Budget details
Question 72: Associated businesses or individuals
Check all statements that apply to your planned spending of the funding from Employment and Social Development Canada.
In carrying out the project, you may have to buy goods or services you need to carry out the project 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 of your organization, or a member of their immediate family
- a business in which an officer, director or employee of your organization, or a member of their immediate family, has a financial interest
- a business connected to your organization
We must approve contract work awarded to contractors outside of Canada. You must provide a proof that no Canadian contractors can do similar work.
Question 73: Capital assets: Will capital assets be among your planned expenditures with Employment and Social Development Canada 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 $1,000 (before taxes). A capital asset is not part of another product and you can still use at the end of the project.
A composite asset is a group of assets that form one unit, where you need everything for the asset to work. A group of assets is a single capital asset if the total cost is more than $1,000 (before taxes).
For example, a composite capital asset is:
- a personal computer with a hard drive
- a monitor
- a keyboard
- a mouse
Four chairs that each cost $300 are not capital assets because each chair works on its own. The chairs cost less than $1,000 (before taxes).
Question 74: Further budget details
Include a breakdown of your total costs per fiscal year (April 1 to March 31), by project activity and cost category.
As an example, this could be the breakdown for a 3-year project with $1,400,000 in eligible costs:
- April 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022: $400,000
- April 1, 2022, to March 31, 2023: $500,000
- April 1, 2023, to March 31, 2024: $500,000
Part 4. Attestation (mandatory)
To be considered eligible, an official representative who has the authority to submit proposals on behalf of your organization must attest that they:
- have the authority to submit the application for funding on behalf of the applicant organization
- certify that the information provided in the application for funding and supporting documentation is true, accurate and complete, and
- have read the applicant guide and understood the program’s requirements
To do this, the official representative must:
- check the 3 boxes of the attestation, and
- provide their names, titles and the date
As this is an attestation, no signature is required.
Use this section to add information to previous sections of the application, and specify the question number.
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