Applicant guide: Funding for projects to improve Black-led organizations’ workplaces and community spaces

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

Official title: Applicant guide - Social Development Partnerships Program - Supporting Black Canadian Communities Call for Proposals

Current status: Closed

This call for proposals ran from June 26 to July 31, 2020 at 6:00 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.

On this page

Section C - Part 1 - Organization

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) and/or provincial/territorial equivalent
  • the name used on funding cheques

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: Year established

Complete the question following the instructions in the application form.

Question 4: Organization type

Choose the following:

  • not-for-profit organization

Note: Private and public organizations are not eligible for funding under this process.

Question 5: Organization category

Your answer to this question must be one of the following:

  • Associations of workers and/or employers
  • International non-governmental organizations
  • Local community, charitable, voluntary organizations
  • Non-governmental organizations with a focus to encourage employment
  • National non-governmental organizations

Question 6: Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) business number

What is your 15-digit CRA business number? For registered charities and not-for-profit organizations, what is your registration number? (For example, 123456789 RR 0001).

You can find your CRA business number on tax-related documents or written communications from the CRA.

Find more information about the CRA Business Number

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, bylaws, council resolutions, or constitution

Questions 7 and 8: Organization primary address and mailing address

Complete the questions following the instructions in the application form.

Question 9: Organization’s primary activities

You must:

  • describe the leadership positions in your organization (Directors, Founders, etc.)
  • describe the governance structure of your organization (volunteer committee, advisory board, eldership circle, etc.)
  • include the percentage of people in leadership positions and in the governance structure who self-identify as Black (minimum two-thirds for leadership and two-thirds for governance)
  • demonstrate the ways your mandate is Black-focused and supports members of the Black community
  • describe the programs and services your organization offers to Black beneficiaries
  • describe whether your organization’s mandate addresses social barriers as a result of race

In addition to the above, in your response indicate, by using the check boxes, whether in the delivery of your mandate or in the provision of programs and services, you support individuals who are also part of other vulnerable populations. If this is the case, choose the other target sub-group(s) that best align with your organization activities from the list provided in the application form.

Here are examples of how you can describe your mandate, but not limited to:

  • help Black communities in Canada to overcome barriers experienced as a result of their identity
  • address social issues of importance to Black Canadian communities

If available, provide the link (web address) of your organization’s website.

Questions 10 to 17: Organization contacts

Complete the questions following the instructions in the application form.

Question 18 and 19: Does your organization owe any amount to the Government of Canada?

If “Yes”, complete the fields for each amount owing. Answering “Yes” to this question will not invalidate your application.

However, you must provide details on the type of debt owed and the arrangements you made to reimburse your debt.

Section C - Part 2 – Project proposal

Project proposal identification

Question 20: Project title

Give a short title that describes your project.

Questions 21 and 22: Planned project start and end dates

When do you plan to start and end your project?

You must complete your project in approximately 12 months.

Your proposed activities must start after we approve your project and after we both sign a funding agreement. We can pay only for activities that take place after we sign the funding agreement.

Questions 23: Amount requested from Employment and Social Development Canada

Provide the amount your organization is requesting for your proposed project.

The amount requested from ESDC cannot exceed $100,000.

Project proposal description

Question 24: Project summary, describe the need of the proposed project including what it aims to achieve, and who is the targeted group

In 500 words or less, you must describe:

  • the current challenge you want to overcome
  • the need you want to address

Your answer should address how the lack of the technology, space or the need for renovation affects your ability to operate and how this project will strengthen your operations if funded.

Question 25: Describe how the proposed project meets the objective (s) and/or priority (ies) of the funding program under which you are applying

In 500 words or less, you must explain how this funding will enhance your ability to serve members of the Black community.

Question 26: Project activities and timelines

You must describe the type of activities you will undertake with your proposed project.

This CFP will only fund projects that will:

  • purchase equipment for work or community spaces, including:
    • purchase of:
      • computers or tablets
      • desks or work furniture
      • software
      • telephone systems
      • boardroom tables
      • sound systems
      • smart boards
      • kitchen appliances
      • equipment to facilitate working virtually, and/or
  • undertake renovations or retrofits of existing workspaces or community spaces that you own or lease to improve their functionality, such as:
    • painting an office or community meeting room
    • increasing office space or improving lay-out
    • renovating or commercializing community kitchens to meet local fire and building codes, by-Laws
    • modernizing community program spaces, such as gyms
    • updating outdoor play spaces to meet current safety standards, etc.

You must also describe the steps that your organization will take to meet the objectives of the project, by providing:

  • clear and relevant description of the project activities
  • clear and feasible project timelines

Here is an example to guide you in outlining your work plan:

  • preparation (1 week):
    • removal of furniture in the workplace
    • preparing the work spaces
    • obtaining measurements
  • renovation of workspace (2 weeks):
    • receiving materials
    • construction of walls
  • finishing (1 week):
    • paint new workspace
    • install new furniture

For renovations or retrofits projects:

  • by completing and submitting your application form you attest that:
    • you own the building, or
    • if you lease the space, your property owner has authorized the renovation or retrofit; and
    • your activities are not taking place on:
      • Government of Canada property
      • private home, or
      • dwelling

Note: If your project is successful, before signing your agreement, we will ask you to provide:

  • a proof of ownership if your organization owns the building
  • a copy of the lease and a letter of consent from the property owner, if you currently lease the space

Question 27: Will any of the proposed project activities be delivered at your organization’s primary address? Will any of the proposed project activities be delivered in a different location from your organization’s primary address?

Complete the question following the instructions in the application form.

Question 28: Will the project or any of its activities involve or benefit to people in English or French-language minority communities, in some way?

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.

Find more information about official language minority communities

Question 29: Is your project targeting specific groups?

Not applicable. Please do not answer this question.

Section C - Part 3 - Budget

Question 30: Project costs (expenses) for the eligible activities or services of the proposed project

List each activity and its associated cost. Costs must be reasonable and support project activities.

Examples of eligible costs:

  • professional fees such as technical expertise and contractors
  • costs to renovate a building, including materials, supplies and labour
  • costs of the purchase or rental of tools, equipment or machinery necessary to complete the project
  • renovation of a workspace or community space, such as:
    • painting an office
    • adding additional office spaces
    • redesigning a boardroom to enhance its functionality
    • renovating or commercializing a community kitchen
    • modernizing community program spaces
    • updating outdoor play spaces, etc.
  • purchase of equipment, such as:
    • work supplies
    • computers or tablets
    • keyboards
    • scanners
    • printers
    • desks
    • software
    • telephone equipment
    • kitchen appliances, etc.

Examples of ineligible costs

  • costs incurred before the signing of the agreement
  • costs linked to renovating and/or retrofitting private homes/dwellings
  • purchase of real property (for example, buildings, land)
  • training costs associated with the project
  • costs linked to purchasing, retrofitting and modifying motor vehicles, for example:
    • automobiles
    • vans
    • buses
  • routine repairs and maintenance costs, or general operating costs (overhead, administrative and operating costs, etc.)
  • financing charges and interest costs
  • legal fees
  • staff salaries and benefits of any employees of the recipient
  • general operating costs of your organization. For example, overhead costs, direct or indirect operating or administrative costs, such as:
    • regular telephone
    • heating costs
    • rent
    • utilities
    • property taxes
    • insurance
    • equipment for staff
    • audit costs
  • construction, renovation and retrofit activities related to the embellishment/or esthetics of a building or its surroundings


If your renovation or retrofit also has a focus on enhancing the accessibility for persons with disabilities, you can also apply under the Enabling Accessibility Fund's small projects component. This process will close on July 13, 2020.

Question 31: Funding sources (revenues) for the proposed project costs noted above

Complete the question following the instructions in the application form.

If you are getting a cash contribution from another source, tell us how much. Include proof with your application.

Donation (In-kind) are goods or services that people or organizations give for free. Your organization or other organizations or partners can donate. Donations include equipment, services or labour that you receive for free.

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

We will recognize in-kind contributions only if we can estimate what your organization would pay for the contribution.

Question 32: Budget details

Use this question to complete previous questions of the application for funding, and specify the question you want to continue.

For renovation or retrofit projects:

  • provide a rationale of why you cannot provide an estimate and how you calculated your project costs under this question

Section C – Part 4 – Program specific questions and checklist

Question 33: Select the origins of the Black Communities in Canada

Complete the question following the instructions in the application form. Choose the origins of the Black Communities in Canada that best align from the list provided in the form. Choose “all of the above” if your organization does not serve a specific origin of the Black communities in Canada.

We will consider the following to select a diverse range of projects to fund:

  • whether in the delivery of your mandate or in the provision of programs and services, you serve specific origins of Black communities in Canada, such as:
    • Caribbean origins
    • African including:
      • Eastern
      • Central
      • Western
      • Southern
    • African Nova Scotians

Program checklist – Supporting Black Canadian Communities (SBCC)

Ensure you have included the required documents before submitting your application.

Review the following checklist carefully. Errors or incomplete applications will result in delayed processing and/or rejection.

Section C - Part 5 - Attestation

In order for your application to be eligible, an official representative who has the capacity and the authority to submit proposals on behalf of your organization must attest that:

  • he/she has the capacity and authority to submit the proposal
  • certify that the information provided is true
  • he/she has read and understood the program's requirements

In order to do this, the official representative must:

  • check the 3 boxes of the attestation, and
  • provide his/her name, title and the date

As this is an attestation, no signature is required.

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