National Call for Proposals 2019 Part 2: Research, Capacity-Building, and Coordination Services (Indirect) Funding Guidelines

Deadline: April 30, 2019 5 pm PST

Table of Contents


The National Call for Proposals 2019 Part 2: Research, Capacity-Building, and Coordination Services (Indirect)

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) administers the Settlement Program to help newcomers settle and adapt to life in Canada, setting them on a path to integration and full citizenship. IRCC works with many partners to deliver a set of ongoing high-quality services to newcomers.

Call for Proposals Part 2 (CFP 2) is a follow-up funding process to the National Call for Proposals 2019 for the Settlement and Resettlement Assistance Programs. This process is for Settlement Program services which were not included in the Call for Proposals 2019. This process does not include the Resettlement Assistance Program.

The purpose of this CFP 2 is to complement direct Settlement services across Canada by funding projects which promote research, capacity-building and coordination services. Funding for recommended projects will commence on April 1, 2020 and will be eligible for a duration of up to five (5) years, ending no later than March 31, 2025. These Funding Guidelines are a tool to help applicants develop their proposal(s). All applicants are responsible for reading the Funding Guidelines in full.

Applicants applying to receive Settlement Program funding for Base indirect services can propose Customized services to address specific gaps or current needs as identified in the Customized Services section of these guidelines. Customized Services are enhanced, refined or niche areas in which IRCC would like to see expansion, or customization, in response to emerging or specific sector needs. The priorities outlined in these guidelines are based on valuable input gathered through extensive local consultations with settlement, resettlement and other stakeholders across all regions.Footnote 1 They also align closely with the priorities identified in the first Call for Proposals 2019.

It should be noted that the funding envelope for indirect services is limited to up to 10 percent of the total funding envelope for the Settlement Program. Generally, funding will more likely be expanded in the key areas identified in the Customized Services section of the guidelines.

CFP 2 Funding Instruments

For the first time under the Settlement Program, funding under this process may be provided through a contribution agreement or a grant.

The Department will make the determination as to which funding instrument will be used to support projects for this process. To be eligible for a grant, projects must meet at least the following criteria:

  • Funding requested must be no more than $1M per fiscal year.
  • The applicant must have an existing funding history with the Department and be in good standing.
  • The applicant must provide a signed legal history form.

Additional criteria such as project complexity and applicant capacity will also be used to assess eligibility of projects for grants.

Applicants do not need to identify whether they are applying for a contribution agreement or a grant.

If an applicant is not eligible for a grant, it is still possible to be considered for funding via a contribution agreement.

Grant: A Grant is a Transfer Payment subject to pre-established eligibility and other entitlement criteria. A grant may be paid in installments or in full depending on the amount, and typically has reduced reporting requirements consisting of performance/outcomes reporting only.

Contribution: A contribution is a transfer payment that is subject to the performance conditions as outlined in a funding agreement. Reimbursement of eligible costs is based on the presentation of acceptable claims and progress reports, in accordance with the terms of the contribution agreement.

The Settlement and Integration Vision

Successful settlement and integration of newcomers benefits Canada by building a more inclusive, diverse and productive nation. This is achieved through a shared effort that helps all reach their economic and social potential.

Our vision is achieved through:

  • Collaboration across all levels of government, civil society, and the private sector;
  • Building welcoming communities responsive to newcomers’ needs and receptive to their talents;
  • Programming that:
    • builds on the strengths of newcomers and the communities they now call home;
    • facilitates learning Canada’s official languages to maximize newcomers’ participation and contribution;
    • supports employment and entrepreneurship of newcomers to build a stronger economy;
    • addresses barriers to full participation in our society and is responsive to the particular needs of the most vulnerable;
    • catalyzes strong community connections, including with Indigenous communities;
    • is relevant to, and available in, both urban centres and small, rural, and northern communities; and
    • helps French-speaking newcomers live in French, contributing to linguistic duality and the vitality of official language minority communities;
  • Services Provider Organizations which maximize outcomes through:
    • a culture of continuous improvement and innovation;
    • providing the right supports at the right time;
    • fostering a professional settlement sector by investing in capacity and knowledge building; and
    • effective administrative practices that maximize the use of public funds.

Settlement and Integration falls within the continuum of managed migration. This process begins with the selection of immigrants and refugees, and involves facilitating the arrival of newcomers to maximize mutual contributions to Canada, and to foster a sense of belonging. The continuum is completed with the integration of newcomers as fully participating citizens in an inclusive society that provides equal opportunity for all.

1. Applying to CFP 2

1.1 Using the GCS Portal

Once you have read through and understood these Funding Guidelines and web tools, you are ready to prepare and submit your application. Submitting your application is a simple three-step process:

  1. Create your Organization ID.

    If you do not yet have a Grants and Contributions System (GCS) Organization ID, access GCS at and click on the “Create a New Account” link to set up your account and obtain your Organization ID.

  2. Complete your Settlement Program application form.

    Log into your GCS account and create a new application. Complete each of the seven sections of the application form by responding to the listed questions, and refer to these Funding Guidelines to shape your answer. The seven application sections are as follows:

    • Section 1: Summary
    • Section 2: Goals and Services
    • Section 3: Activities
    • Section 4: Outreach and Outcomes
    • Section 5: Capacity
    • Section 6: Evaluation
    • Section 7: Budget

    In order to submit the application, you must complete all sections, attach all the mandatory documents and approve the Executive Declaration.

  3. Click on “Submit” before April 30, 2019 5 pm PST

    You must click the “Submit” button on your application form before the April 30, 2019 5 pm PST deadline, in order for your application to be considered for funding. After submitting, you will not be able to modify your application form.

If you encounter any technical issues while completing the application form in the Grants and Contributions System, you are encouraged to contact the Help Desk.

1.2 Mandatory Documents

As noted in Section 1.1 of these Funding Guidelines, you must attach certain mandatory documents to your application. Different mandatory documents are required based on your applicant type. Applications missing mandatory documents will be considered incomplete and will be removed from the process; there will be no follow-up from IRCC to obtain missing information.

Applicant type - Public institutions (such as a school board) and any non-federal levels of government:

  • Letter of support from each financial partner that is contributing funds toward the proposed project (if applicable).

Applicant type - Other organizations (including non-profits):

  • Most recent Annual Report;
  • Full financial statements including comparative information for the last two fiscal years (audited preferred). If your organization is relatively new and lacks full financial statements for two full fiscal years, provide the information for the period of time the organization has been in existence;
  • Names of persons on Board of Directors;
  • Names of any former public servants associated with this application, if applicable;
  • At least one of the following: Constitution, By-laws, Letter of Incorporation or similar instrument of governance; and
  • Letter of support from each financial partner that is contributing funds toward the proposed project (if applicable).
  • Signed legal history form (PDF, 982 KB) (applications meeting grant requirements only).

Applicant type - Individuals

  • Curriculum vitae;
  • Proof of Canadian citizenship or permanent resident statusFootnote 2; and
  • Letter of support from each financial partner that is contributing funds toward the proposed project (if applicable).

1.3 Considerations

IRCC is under no obligation to fund any application submitted through this CFP or to fund the entire scope or duration of a proposed project. If a project is selected for possible funding, IRCC will notify the applicant in writing that the application has been approved in principle. Applicants must not assume that their application has been approved-in-principle, until notified by IRCC.

The funding envelope for the Settlement Program includes both Base and Customized Services. There is no fixed funding envelope for Base Services and Customized Services respectively. Proposed project budgets should be based on a realistic evaluation of expenses required to deliver proposed activities. All applicants should refer to IRCC’s Budget Guidance, located on our Funding Page in the Tools section, for detailed information on eligible and ineligible items. The amount of funding and scope of activities that will be supported by IRCC will be contingent on the satisfactory negotiation of a grant or contribution agreement.

Any expenditure incurred prior to the signing of the grant or contribution agreement by IRCC or prior to IRCC’s approved project start date, or any costs related to the preparation of an application, will not be reimbursed.

Note: Successful applicants will be required to comply with Canadian privacy laws such as the applicable federal provincial/territorial privacy and access to information legislation and/or Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act. Applicants will also need to adhere to all physical and electronic security requirements, as stipulated in a signed grant or contribution agreement. See the questions and answers section on our Funding Page for a list of security requirements.

1.4 Webinars

The Department knows Funding Guidelines can raise questions. We want to address any uncertainty you may have. We will be hosting information webinars in both official languages during the application period to provide you with the opportunity to ask IRCC questions relating to the CFP 2 process.

Specific dates and times for each webinar can be found on our Funding Page.

1.5 Web Tools

You will find the following tools to assist you as you write your application on the IRCC Funding Page.


  • Budget Guidance - required budget information and list of eligible and ineligible items.
  • Grants and Contributions System Tutorials - a walk-through on how to submit and review your application.
  • Frequently Asked Questions – commonly asked questions with answers regarding the call for proposals process and content.


Applying to be a new Local Immigration Partnership

Applicants, without an existing LIP in a community, can now apply to:

  1. Establish a new LIP
  2. Establish a Zonal Immigration Partnership (ZIP)

    Applicants from a small community are encouraged to consider applying with other small communities in the vicinity to form a ZIP.

    • A ZIP consists of two or more communities, allowing more local stakeholders to pool their resources and expertise by participating in a regional partnership.
    • A ZIP can be made up of two or more small centres (population under 30,000 as per Statistics Canada), one small centre with one or smaller census sub-divisions e.g. township etc.

    This model is best suited to small centres but IRCC may consider ZIP proposals from centres that have few immigrant-serving agencies.

    Assessment criteria for new LIPs and ZIPs

    Applications to establish new LIPs and ZIPs must demonstrate community readiness in their application and/or through supporting documents:

    1. Evidence of multi-sector support:
      • signatures of local stakeholders from such sectors as settlement, health, education, emergency services and representatives of the private sector;
      • and/or individual letters of support;
      • and/or evidence of multi-sectoral community meetings.
    2. Municipal support:
      • a letter of support from a single (or multi-tier) municipality that details how the municipality will support the LIP/ZIP such as:
        • commitment to participate in the partnership as an observer,
        • commitment to participate as a member,
        • Municipality’s willingness to stay informed.
    3. Community Size: Applicants are to include the latest publically available statistics on the overall size of the population in the catchment area of the LIP/ZIP, as well as an estimate of the newcomer population. Depending on the size of the community and how well the applicant fulfils the first two criteria, IRCC may recommend the inclusion of other small centres in order to create a ZIP.
  3. LIP/ZIP Feasibility Funding
    • Communities unable to fulfill the above three criteria can apply for LIP/ZIP Feasibility Funding - short-term research funding to determine whether a LIP/ZIP in a given community would be possible and would thrive. Key components of the study would include but are not limited to: assessing municipal and local multi-sector support to establish a LIP/ZIP; providing a community profile of newcomers and their needs; and settlement service offerings and gaps; convening stakeholders to determine community priorities; providing an estimate of financial resources the partnership will be able to leverage. A viability study with positive conclusions is required before a LIP/ZIP can be established.

N.B. Applications for LIP/ZIP Feasibility Funding are not subject to the three assessment criteria outlined above

2. Application Assessment Based on CORE Principles.

IRCC’s CORE PrinciplesFootnote 3 underpin all programming funded under the Settlement Program. As funding applicants, you are expected to incorporate these principles in the design, implementation and evaluation of your proposed project(s), and articulate how you have done so in your application. IRCC’s assessment of your application will take these principles, along with obligations related to official languages, into consideration, as outlined below.

IRCC’s CORE Principles described below.
Text version: IRCC’s CORE Principles


Programming that is tailored to meet specific client profiles. This includes ensuring Francophone services for those who want to live and work in French, and a focus on clients who are vulnerable, marginalized or face barriers.


Programming that is driven by evidence, ensuring the best outcomes, both short and long term, for the client.

Responsive to need

Programming that meets the needs of not only the client, but of society itself, to best integrate newcomers and achieve the shared vision for settlement and integration.

Effective use of resources

Programming that is effective and efficient, utilizing partnerships, leveraging shared resources, and developing untapped community assets such as volunteers and local businesses.

2.1 Client-Centered

According to the logic model, and to the Program's Terms and Conditions, the client of Settlement Program services is the newcomer. When applying a client-centred approach to indirect settlement services, however, there are multiple groups to consider. The newcomer remains the client, as the one who ultimately benefits from indirect services by receiving better, more informed direct services. Yet, for indirect services to be client-centred, there must be an understanding of the needs of the stakeholders, such as the individuals and organizations who are delivering settlement services, including the different ways and environments in which services are provided. For instance, a properly designed capacity-building project would take into consideration the differences between delivering services in an urban environment versus a smaller centre.

For community partnerships, such as Local Immigration Partnerships or Réseaux en immigration francophone, it is important that activities contribute not only to the strength of the settlement sector, but to the community and region in which settlement services are located. This requires an appreciation of the unique needs and goals of the community, the resources available, and the best ways to mobilize those resources for the successful settlement of newcomers in their community.

Since the newcomer is the ultimate client, it's essential that newcomers be involved in the development of sector and community capacity building. This is especially true in the case of vulnerable populations, such as visible minority newcomer women, LGBTQ2+, youth, seniors, those with disabilities or those exposed to trauma.

Applications for projects that seek to build knowledge and enhance capacity in the sector will be looked upon favourably by IRCC:

  • If research designs treat the client as an active subject and identify and address systemic barriers to enable all newcomers to fully benefit from the settlement services; and,
  • If capacity-building services assist partners engaged in settlement (employers, community organizations, other levels of government, et al) to connect with newcomers to establish inclusive practices, and to facilitate the contribution of newcomers to Canada.

2.2 Outcomes-Driven

Outcomes-driven programming is focused on creating a change based on evidence and quantitative as well as qualitative data. Indirect services are designed to provide the best outcomes for both the immediate stakeholders (i.e. the service provider organizations and community partners) and ultimately, the newcomers. Outcomes-driven means being able to track both project outputs and measure outcomes, to recognize success in the immediate, intermediate and ultimate terms.

Outputs vs. Outcomes

  • Outputs are results of activities proposed, for example, the number of training tools developed, the number of service providers trained, etc...
  • Outcomes are what changed as a result of the delivered outputs for the community, employers, etc., for example community partners who changed their capacity to respond to newcomers' needs.
  • Outcomes are defined as:
    • Immediate: within one year from delivery of the activities focused on changes in capacity of the service provider or community partner in terms of knowledge, skills, and networks;
    • Intermediate: 1 to 5 years since delivery of activities, focused on the use of acquired skills and knowledge to support improved direct service delivery; and
    • Ultimate: Beyond 5 years since the delivery of activities, focused on the newcomer's integration within society.

While IRCC has developed tools to track outcomes through the Immigration Contribution Agreement Reporting Environment (iCARE) system and IRCC Outcomes Surveys, project proposals seeking to enhance evaluation capacity may additionally develop their own evidence base including qualitative data, ethnographic studies or focus groups. Organizations are encouraged to consider partnerships with third party evaluators (e.g. universities) to assess outcomes and not to solely rely on client feedback surveys administered by the settlement staff.

2.3 Responsive to Need

Indirect settlement services seek to meet the capacity-building needs of the settlement sector and of the communities who work to help newcomers settle. This includes addressing areas of weakness as well as systemic barriers within organizations or communities that might hinder the success of the newcomers’ integration. Projects must be informed by a clear understanding of the needs of both the immediate stakeholder (settlement workers, sector organizations and communities) and the ultimate client, the newcomer. Recognizing the variety of environments in which the settlement sector and community partners deliver services, indirect projects must build in flexibility and accessibility to address the stakeholder and the client’s needs.

There should be a clear need for the project, supported by evidence and data. Project goals should be feasible, with clear links to the Base Indirect services, and to Customized services if applicable. Programming should be adaptable to the changing needs of their client groups, either the immediate stakeholders or ultimate clients.

Applicants should have the necessary capacity and expertise to deliver effective programming. Where specialized knowledge is needed, IRCC will look favourably upon projects that involve external specialists and/or newcomers themselves to help design the most effective programming. This includes working with local stakeholders to ensure that services and partnerships created through funded projects support relevant community stakeholders to build their awareness, knowledge and cultural competencies to meet the needs of newcomers.

2.4 Effective Use of Resources

Indirect services are vital to supporting capacity-building, but are also subject to the reality of finite resources. This means that programming must be as effective and efficient as possible. IRCC encourages engagement of partners and collaboration between proponents to harness the collective skills and knowledge within the settlement, resettlement and other sectors.

Partnerships (both new partnerships and deepening of existing partnerships), the nature of partnerships (e.g. financial or service delivery agreements between organizations), leveraging of shared community assets and resources, and other innovative approaches can help us achieve the same or greater outcomes together within budget constraints. Programming can also harness untapped resources such as relevant technologies, new volunteers and businesses.

3. Official Languages Obligations and the Francophone Integration Pathway

Under the Official Languages Act and the Immigration and Refugees Protection Act, IRCC has a responsibility to support the vitality of official language minority communities, satisfy the principle of substantive equality, and adapt its services to meet the needs of the official language minority population.Footnote 4

To support these obligations, IRCC is implementing a Francophone Integration Pathway to foster connections between newcomers, from all linguistic backgrounds, and Francophone and Acadian Communities. This approach aims to ensure that French-speaking newcomers are aware of resettlement and settlement services available in French, by Francophone organizations, throughout their settlement and integration process, up until citizenship.

The Pathway is a major component of IRCC’s Francophone Immigration Strategy. The success of this Pathway will require engagement and collaboration among the entire resettlement and settlement sectors, including IRCC and its regional offices, and non-Francophone and Francophone service provider organizations.

For proposals including projects delivered in French and targeting the Francophone settlement sector, IRCC will give priority primarily to Francophone organizations/service providers. Alignment with priorities identified by the Réseaux en immigration francophone when applicable and/or through consultations with Francophone and Acadian community stakeholders is encouraged.

Projects or events targeting the whole sector should be delivered in both official languages and when applicable, in consultation with the Réseaux en immigration francophone.

4. Assessment Criteria

Below are the overarching assessment criteria, based on CORE Principles, against which all applications will be evaluated. Funding decisions are based on your proposal’s total assessment score, service provider funding history with IRCC (if applicable), and departmental priorities.

Client-Centred (15%)

  • Strategy to engage target project participants is sufficient and appropriate.
  • Programming is client-informed with flexibility to meet the emerging needs of both immediate stakeholders and ultimate clients.
  • Applicants demonstrate that they have the capacity, experience, contextual knowledge, and appropriate partners (if applicable) to carry out the project.

Outcomes-Driven (40%)

  • Project activities are geared towards and can directly lead to expected outcomes.
  • Activities are relevant to outcomes and the completion of the project.
  • Project outcomes align with one or more IRCC outcomes identified for the Program. The link between the immediate and intermediate outcome is logical.
  • Each project outcome is measurable and the organization has a plan in place to ensure that they achieve successful outcome(s).
  • Each outcome is supported by a plan to monitor performance and evaluate results. Data collected will be used to assess, report and adjust programming.

Responsive to Need (20%)

  • The need for the project is clear and supported by evidence.
  • There are feasible project goal(s) with clear link(s) to one or more Base Services and, if applicable, Customized Services.
  • Proponents consult or include appropriate experts in the design, development or implementation of the project to be responsive to needs.
  • Project has processes in place to identify emerging needs and circumstances, and to adapt and adjust services accordingly.
  • Projects are delivered in ways that are accessible to all potential stakeholders (including Francophone organizations).

Effective Use of Resources (25%)

  • Full range of community assets are being leveraged to avoid duplication (e.g., building on existing resources and expertise from both within the settlement sector and through other partnerships).
  • Proposed budget is balanced. All costs and revenues related to the project have been itemized and explained.
  • Project costs are in line with average costs for similar services in the same geographic area, where applicable.
  • The applicant has demonstrated proper and responsible use of funds related to both administration and program delivery.

5. Settlement Program (Indirect Services Application)

Indirect Services, which include national programming, knowledge- and capacity-building, and coordination of community partners, are vital to achieving the vision for settlement and integration in Canada. Applications should describe the outcomes, Base Services and Customized Services (if applicable) for which funding is being sought.

To receive settlement funding through CFP 2, a project must:

  • Be an indirect service as defined in Section 5.2.1;
  • Align with the Immediate Outcome as defined in Section 6.1; and
  • Align with the Intermediate Outcome as defined in Section 6.2

Base Services are foundational services that remain relatively stable from year to year. Customized Services are program enhancements, specialized services or niche areas in which IRCC would like to see expansion, customization or a particular focus, in response to emerging or specific client needs and departmental priorities. These services were determined based on extensive consultations with stakeholders across all regions and are aligned with the focus in the Call for Proposals 2019 for better supports for vulnerable newcomers, and addressing specific gaps in programming.

The CORE Principles and official languages obligations (see section 3) apply to both Base and Customized Services.

You may not be interested in offering a Customized Service, in which case, your application will indicate only the Base Indirect Services you would like to offer. It is not possible to only provide a customized service.

You may want to offer both an Indirect Base Service and a Customized Service, for example, an umbrella organization developing specific professional development programming on mental health that would be shared nationally. Simply select the Indirect Base Services and the corresponding option under Customized Services and explain how your project applies to these two services.

5.1 Eligible Applicants

For settlement services, eligible applicants are:

  • provincial, territorial or municipal governments;
  • international organizations;
  • not for profit organizations including non-governmental organizations, non-profit corporations, community groups, umbrella organizations, regulatory bodies and apprenticeship authorities;
  • businesses, including those that provide indirect services (e.g., employers hiring newcomers, private language schools, conference organizers, web or production firms for tool development);
  • educational institutions (including school boards, districts and divisions); and
  • individuals.


For-profit organizations may be eligible for funding provided that the nature and the intent of the activity is non-commercial, not intended to generate profit, and supports IRCC program priorities and objectives.

5.2 Eligible Services

5.2.1 Base Services

Base Services refer to standard and ongoing programming in the Settlement Program that remains relatively stable from year to year. Although applicants are encouraged to submit creative and innovative approaches that reflect the priorities of this intake process, all projects must align with the types of indirect activities listed below.

  • National programming that can benefit the sector in part or as a whole to:
    • Build knowledge through applied research, evaluation and performance measurement projects on unmet needs and best practices;
    • Enhance the capacity of the sector to ensure that service provision to clients is evidence-based, outcomes-driven and innovative;
    • Create consistency and standardization of approaches, such as training standards, curricula and coordination among community partners for effective service delivery.
  • Local Immigration Partnerships (LIPs);
  • Umbrella Organizations;
  • Francophone Settlement Indirect Services
    • Réseaux en immigration francophone (RIFs)
    • National coordination bodies and events on Francophone immigration

These activities all contribute to the achievement of immediate outcome #7 and intermediate outcome #6 outlined in the Settlement Program logic model, as described in Section 6.

When completing Section 2: Goals and Services of your application in GCS, please select “Indirect Services” as the Base service.

Indirect Services

All projects through this process should address at least one of the indirect services below.

Indirect Base Service 1: National Projects

National projects are those that support the development and advancement of settlement policy and programming, through capacity and knowledge building, as well as standardization of approaches to service delivery. This involves building an environment that fosters collaboration, networks and national cohesion; contributes to knowledge on integration; and strengthens the sector’s capacity to deliver service.

Examples of eligible national projects (not exhaustive):

Knowledge-building: Knowledge creation and mobilization projects that can benefit the sector as a whole through policy-relevant research including applied and qualitative research projects and best practices of effective settlement services;

  • Research projects that foster collaboration between settlement sector organizations (settlement service providers, umbrella organizations, coordinating bodies, LIPs and/or RIFs); and conferences and academic research to leverage evidence, identify research gaps, and support locally-grounded research that is also relevant on a national or regional scale.
  • Projects that enhance the settlement sector’s capacity for performance measurement through research on outcomes and measures of success.
  • Maintenance and building on the existing Community of Practice: In the last funding cycle, IRCC invested in the development of an online community of practice. The purpose of this project was to create a space for the sharing of best practices, tools and resources by the settlement sector. As the project comes on-line in the next year, we are looking to maintain the space, as well as fund projects that enrich the existing online Community of Practice with sharing of best practices, tools and resources, particularly in areas of specialization (programming for youth, programming for LGBTQ2+, etc.).

Capacity Building: Professional Development projects that strengthen the capacity of the sector to deliver outcomes-driven settlement services and/or build on existing professional development projects

  • Projects that create or enhance partnerships between settlement service providers and other partners outside of the sector to deliver professional development activities and events including tools, content, and learning resources that can be applied on a national or multi-regional scale, preferably after demonstrating its effectiveness on a smaller scale.
  • This includes training and professional development in areas critical to the delivery of high quality settlement programming. Examples (not exhaustive) include:
    • Training and professional development tailored to specific sub-groups of settlement workers with specialized functions (e.g. volunteer coordinators, employment counsellors, settlement workers in schools)
    • Training on the Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) and Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens (NCLC) frameworks, task-based learning, portfolio-based language assessment (évaluation linguistique basée sur le portfolio), and ESL/FSL literacy.
    • Training, resources, and services that support assessor qualification in the use of Canadian Language Benchmarks CLB and Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens NCLC-based assessment tests and tools to deliver timely and appropriate language placement assessments and referrals to settlement language training.

Standardization: Projects that create consistency and standardization of approach across the country, and/or projects that maintain existing standardization frameworks

  • Examples include:
    • Projects that develop CLB and/or NCLC-based tools, tests, content and resources consistent with national curriculum guidelines and learning management systems to support in-person/online/blended delivery of effective settlement language programming across Canada (outside of Quebec).
    • Partnerships to enhance, adapt, or extend the use of existing language training frameworks and improve coherence with other sectors outside of settlement (e.g. education).
Indirect Base Service 2: Umbrella Organizations

Umbrella Organizations work with the settlement sector within a geographic area, be it provincial, regional or national on issues related to professional development, liaison, coordination, leadership, etc...

Effective functioning of the settlement system in each jurisdiction requires an effective interlocutor from the settlement sector that can engage settlement actors. Therefore, a key role for umbrella organizations is to facilitate communication within the settlement sector and between governments and the settlement sector.

Another important role for Umbrella Organizations is to provide leadership in the area of settlement sector capacity building. Capacity building has many dimensions, including tool and resource development, professional development, best practice activities, such as workshops or promotion of the communities of practice, and outcome measurement capacity.

Examples of eligible Umbrella Organization activities (not exhaustive):

Professional Development

  • Support professional development according to the varying needs of settlement sector workers and provide national leadership for knowledge-sharing.
  • Sector capacity building to respond to overall government priorities for Customized services, aligning with the Call for Proposal 2019 Priority Areas: Language and Employment Combination; Programming that Engages Employers; Consolidating a Francophone Integration PathwayFootnote 5; Fostering the Entrepreneurial Spirit of Newcomers; Mental Health and Well-being; Small-centre, Remote, Northern and Pan-Northern Services.
  • Training for board members in areas including cultural competency, gender issues, strategic planning, governance and management, outcomes measurement and innovation.

Liaison and Coordination

  • Promoting a collective voice for members and/or acting as an advisory and coordinating body.
  • Facilitating communications within the sector and acting as a convenor of the sector to discuss, identify and analyze cross-cutting issues within the sector and to strategically communicate these issues to governments.
  • Strengthening governance, coordination and collaboration across the sector.
  • Hosting events and fora to promote best practices for excellence in both organizational governance and service delivery.
  • Promoting and providing tools on best practices for collaboration.
  • Assisting settlement service providers, umbrella organizations, and other stakeholders to meet and engage, foster connections, create partnerships, etc. with federal and provincial/territorial governments.


  • Providing a leadership role as an employer by modelling values and ethics, developing tools such as codes of conduct, project/program charters, HR protocols and sharing of best practices for a healthy workplace.
  • Developing communication strategies by leveraging local as well as sector-level expertise, and encouraging community/ stakeholder engagement and non-traditional partnerships.
  • Developing standards in areas such as service professional qualification and consistent HR practices (including comparable salaries) with the purpose of further professionalizing the settlement sector.
Indirect Base Service 3: Community Partnerships

Local Immigration Partnerships (LIPs)

Local Immigration Partnerships (LIPs) are community-based bodies that promote integration at the local level and foster more welcoming communities. LIPs focus uniquely on the community sector at large in a municipality or in small centres and rural communities. LIPs are hosted by municipal or regional governments or community organizations that have experience in serving immigrants.

LIPs work by establishing a partnership involving many sectors including federal, provincial and municipal governments, settlement service provider organizations, health services, employers, school boards among others to identify newcomers’ needs and gaps in community services to support community-based planning.

By working with their Main Council members, LIPs encourage local non-settlement service providers to take newcomers’ needs into consideration in terms of access, coordination and programming. They also work to ensure that local, and particularly municipal, services and funding priorities address newcomers’ needs.

Examples of eligible Local Immigration Partnership activities:

  • Establishing and maintaining an inclusive partnership council.
  • Conducting (or contracting out) research on newcomers’ needs and community gaps.
  • Establishing a Strategic Plan to identify community priorities.
  • Establishing Action Plans to advance community priorities.
  • Supporting member-led implementation of Action Plans.
  • Conducting LIP-led knowledge sharing and training.
  • Supporting community capacity to respond to emerging needs:
    • LIPs may want to discuss with their Main Council members the following activities (now eligible for IRCC funding) to determine whether they align with local priorities and can be included in a Strategic and/or Action Plan:
      • New eligible activity: Work in partnership on local public campaigns or community dialogues focused on anti-discrimination and/or cultural diversity awareness
      • New eligible activity: Work in partnership on activities related to newcomer retention, particularly in small centres and rural areas

If you are applying to create a new LIP, please refer to Applying to be a new Local Immigration Partnership for more information on the process.

Réseaux en immigration francophone (RIF)

The Réseaux en immigration francophone (RIF) are responsible for advancing the work of consultation and mobilization on issues related to attracting, integrating and retaining newcomers to Francophone communities. This role is now strengthened to ensure the success of a coordinated Francophone Integration Pathway and the implementation of the Welcoming Francophone Communities Initiative in targeted locations.

IRCC wants to fund RIFs with strengthened leadership so that they can effectively mobilize key players and play an active and strategic role in the Francophone sector and the settlement sector as a whole.

Examples of eligible Réseaux en immigration francophone activities:

  • Establish and maintain a steering committee and Terms of Reference for the RIFs;
  • Conducting research (or contracting out research) and consultations on the needs of French-speaking immigrants or gaps in the community;
  • Developing strategic plans that inform the community, IRCC and the national coordination of RIF members' priorities;
  • Establishing an action plan to advance identified priorities;
  • Supporting members in implementing priorities;
  • Holding a forum for dialogue, foster coordinated service approaches, fostering the sharing of good practices, developing partnerships and effectively communicating information;
  • Contributing to making training accessible in support of the members' capacities;
  • Contributing to the co-planning of initiatives in collaboration with IRCC and other institutional and community players;
  • Participating in and represent the RIF at provincial or national events related to Francophone settlement or immigration;
  • Facilitating the creation and monitoring of Welcoming Francophone Communities;
  • Supporting local Francophone immigration committees (where applicable)

RIF will be able to propose with their members the following New indirect activities (now eligible under the terms of the settlement program) in their strategic plans:

  • Activities to promote Francophone settlement services and Francophone minority communities;
  • Outreach, attraction and retention activities in support of the vitality of Francophone minority communities
Indirect Base Service 4: Francophone Indirect Services (National coordinating bodies and events)

National coordinating bodies and events foster a “by and for Francophones” approach, providing key mechanisms to engage Francophone communities; advance Francophone immigration objectives and strategies spanning the immigration-integration continuum; and support information-sharing and collaboration between multiple stakeholders and partners

Examples of eligible Francophone Indirect activities (not exhaustive):

Governance Mechanism(s) on Francophone Immigration

  • Governance mechanism(s) to foster national coordination and collaboration on Francophone immigration to discuss, identify and analyze cross-cutting issues among Francophone community stakeholders and with government representatives (this includes the joint IRCC-Francophone Minority Community Committee).

National Francophone Capacity Building Event

  • Hosting a national event on Francophone immigration outside of Quebec to bring together academics, Francophone community stakeholders and government representatives annually to take stock of challenges, opportunities and best practices, as well as to facilitate knowledge dissemination and discussion to inform efforts in this area.

National Coordination and Support for Réseaux en immigration francophone

The success of the RIF as a network is based on the ability of the RIF coordinators to develop expertise in consultation, mobilization and strategic planning. In an effort to strengthen their capacity, IRCC wishes that a national coordination function will provide them with structured operational support, and comprehensive guidance to ensure the strategic and professional development of RIF staff.

  • Coordinating and promoting initiatives as part of National Francophone Immigration Week;
  • Report on the challenges, successes, needs and priorities of the RIFs;
  • Holding learning and co-planning days;
  • A continuing education plan including orientation for new RIF staff;
  • Create a toolbox to specify the main functions associated with the roles of the coordination of the RIFs (e.g.: typical frameworks, standard activities, typical skills sought);
  • Guide to the development and revision of the terms of reference of the RIFs;
  • Measures to promote the effective dissemination of information and the sharing of best practices in community consultation;
  • Measures and strategies that promote inclusion and diversity within the RIFs.

Note: Funding for the national coordination for the RIF will initially be for a period of two to three years and may be renewed or revised according to the directions resulting from the Francophone Settlement Advisory Group (see section Customized services, Creation of a Francophone Settlement Advisory Group).

5.2.2 Customized Services

Customized Services are enhanced, refined or niche areas in which IRCC would like to see expansion, or customization, in response to emerging or specific sector needs. The priorities outlined in these guidelines are based on valuable input gathered through extensive local consultations with settlement and other stakeholders across all regions. They also align closely with the priorities identified in the first Call for Proposals 2019.

For the purpose of Indirect Funding, “Customized Services” are specific expansions or enhancements to Base Services programming, and must be associated with a Base Service indirect activity.

Customized Service 1: Addressing National Programming Gaps (National Projects)


  • Quantitative and Qualitative research on how and why integration outcomes in selected domains (e.g. economic, social, civic, cultural) vary across diverse population groups (e.g. refugees, youth, women, seniors, Francophone communities)
  • Research on the indicators used to evaluate success of settlement programs, how the assessment of settlement programs can be improved based on the measurement of outcomes and inputs from newcomers.
  • Research on the effectiveness of different service delivery models including in rural and Northern communities (such as in-person, online, blended) and how the environment in which a Service Provider Organization functions has an impact on outcomes (e.g. urban vs. rural, between Census Metropolitan Areas, between provinces and territories).


  • Bilingual, settlement orientation videos with national-level messaging (based on Government of Canada publications such as Welcome to Canada and the Citizenship guide), both generic and for unique client types (i.e. refugees or youth), on the following topics:
    • Employment, health care, money and finances, transportation, Canadian law and justice, communications and media, becoming a Canadian citizen, your rights and freedoms in Canada, Indigenous peoples, and mental health.
  • Indigenous awareness resources for IRCC-funded group orientation sessions (for example, classroom handouts, PowerPoint presentations, webinars).
Customized Service 2: Building Capacity to Address Mental Health and Trauma (National Projects)


  • Research on enhanced partnerships between levels of government and community service providers for delivery of crisis counselling/mental health supports.


  • Professional development training on the subject of both the mental health needs of newcomers and the existing resources and supports (for referral).
  • Professional development training regarding trauma-informed approaches to service delivery.
  • Development of resources and training to support settlement workers at risk of experiencing vicarious trauma, as a result of working with specific clients who have experienced trauma, particularly refugees.
Customized Service 3: Building Capacity to Support Clients with Unique Barriers (National Projects)

Knowledge Building

  • Research on the data gaps for vulnerable populations, including which client-groups are in most need of settlement supports and why, which segments have more incidence of unmet settlement needs, and what are the socio-demographic characteristics of those who are most likely to use settlement services.
  • Conducting research on changing and/or unmet needs among newcomer youth. Emphasis should be on identifying best practices or adaptations needed to effectively support the settlement and integration of high needs youth who have recently arrived in Canada (e.g., refugee youth).
  • Research focused on 1) the impacts and outcomes of Settlement Workers in Schools/in-school supports; and 2) the experiences of students, families, settlement workers and school staff to identify programming gaps and inform promising practices.


  • Capacity building training and resources for service provider organizations using a gender-based-analysis+ lens, maximizing community partnerships and expertise, to address the following issues and/or client-populations:
    • gender equality,
    • gender-based violence prevention, including engagement with men and boys
    • Anti-violence training
    • Enhanced settlement services for vulnerable clients, including women, youth and LGBTQ2+ populations, that have experienced or who may be at risk of experiencing violence, with collaboration of non-settlement sector players, such as the legal system or transition house associations to identify gaps in service delivery
    • The systemic barriers that contribute to inequality and discrimination against LGBTQ2+ newcomer populations, which should include examination of settlement sector policies and protocols.
    • Client-informed youth programming, including training on how to engage and involve youth in the creation, implementation, and evaluation of the programs that serve them (e.g., participatory design; peer-led youth programming; mentoring activities that leverage youth’s lived experiences; train-the-trainer models). Emphasis should be on supporting capacity to deliver a wide range of program and service activities (e.g., education, employment readiness, language acquisition, mental health, social inclusion, etc.) using a youth-centred, youth-informed approach.
    • Creating greater settlement service accessibility for those with physical or intellectual disabilities
  • Partnerships between settlement language service providers and other partners outside of the sector to improve access to language training tools,
  • Partnerships between settlement language service providers and other partners outside of the sector to develop adapted tools (e.g. using American Sign Language, braille, or alternate formats), resources and materials (e.g. for ESL/FSL literacy learners, mental health needs) to ensure that specialized language services are accessible by newcomers with special needs.
Customized Service 4: Building Capacity for Employer Engagement (National Projects)

Initiatives that build service provider capacity to engage with employers, with the goal of supporting newcomer employment, occupational health and safety, job retention and advancement. In building stronger connections between service providers and employers, service providers will have a better understanding of the needs of employers and can adapt their programming to align with those needs, and employers will more likely consider newcomers and their needs as they fill their labour needs. This includes:

  • Research, professional development training and tools to support service providers in employer engagement in areas such as developing and maintaining connections with employers, understanding employer needs, and making effective value propositions.
  • Network-building initiatives between service providers active in employer engagement, such as immigrant employment councils, to support the exchange of best practices and develop shared resources.
Customized Service 5: Coordinating Local Immigration Partnerships (LIPs)

Creation of a national coordinating body for the network of Local Immigration Partnerships (LIPs) across Canada. This role could include:

  • Representing the various voices of LIPs (e.g. small, large, rural, urban) at the national level
  • Coordinating the sharing of best practices
  • Providing capacity building support (e.g. serving as a repository of LIP projects and promising practices),
  • Liaising with funders, stakeholders and sector tables etc.
Customized Service 6: Building Capacity of the Francophone Direct Service Providers

Capacity building for the Francophone settlement sector is a priority set out in the 2018-2023 Action Plan for Official Languages: Investing In Our Future. In order to identify ways to achieve this, IRCC undertook a co-planning exercise with the Francophone and Acadian communities that provided a more detailed portrait of the needs and obstacles faced by Francophone service providers while exploring the possibility of establishing a national approach in support of the Francophone sector. To respond to the findings, IRCC wishes to fund the activities listed below.

Projects promoting professional development and capacity building for Francophone direct service providers. Examples of activities:

  • Professional training, of national or regional scope, adapted to the Francophone minority context intended for Francophone direct service providers in order to increase their ability to intervene and respond effectively to the needs of various clienteles (e.g., refugees, women, youth, LGBTQ2+).
  • Training, tools, sharing of good practices in support of service providers on topics such as diversity and intercultural communication, mental health issues, family dynamics, youth issues, working with employers and how to build effective partnerships.
  • Training, tools, sharing of good practices for settlement workers in French-language schools or language training service providers.
  • Innovative approaches that promote the transfer of knowledge and good practices or the mentorship between organizations.
Customized Service 7: Creation of a Francophone Settlement Advisory Group co-chaired by IRCC and a representative of the Francophone direct settlement service sector

IRCC recognizes the need for the francophone settlement sector to make its voice heard, to improve its representativeness and develop its expertise in settlement and integration expertise. In order to progressively implement a new national coordination approach, or a sectoral entity in support of the francophone settlement sector, IRCC wishes for a Francophone settlement advisory group to make recommendations and propose a model to be implemented beyond 2022. The results of the work of the advisory group could, among other things, guide possible changes to other French-language indirect services. IRCC also wishes to work with this advisory group to obtain informed advice on the development of program policies to improve the delivery of direct French-language services. The advisory group should bring together key expertise representing several aspects of Francophone direct and indirect services (e.g., general information and orientation services, language training, employability, community connections, pre-departure services, support services, RIFs, etc.).

Examples of eligible activities:

  • Logistics coordination functions and co-planning work with IRCC;
  • Research and surveys;
  • Use of external expertise (e.g., governance expert);
  • Broader engagement of the francophone settlement sector;
  • Reports and recommendations.

6. Settlement Program Outcomes

Based on the CORE Principles, your application will need to align with both the Settlement Program immediate and the intermediate outcome described below and demonstrate how your project aligns with and supports the selected Program outcomes.

6.1 Immediate Outcome

Applications must address Immediate Outcome #7 of the Settlement Program Logic Model.

Immediate Outcome: Partners deliver responsive and coordinated settlement and community services

IRCC provides funding for various community partnership initiatives and capacity building activities. The expected outcome is for settlement service provider organizations and partners to deliver responsive and coordinated settlement services.

Depending on the nature of your project, your application should describe:

  • How the activities included in your proposal (e.g. training) will improve capacities of the project participants, partners’, stakeholders and communities in terms of knowledge, understanding and skills in the delivery of service provision to newcomers, including settlement and mainstream services;
  • How partner involvement will improve coordination and consistency of newcomer settlement services, including expansion of networks, partnerships, linkages between organizations; and/or
  • How changes will be measured in partner organizations, other stakeholders involved in the local community, including intended impacts on partners and stakeholders, and the data collection methods and performance indicators to measure them, involvement of partners and stakeholders in data collection activities.

6.2 Intermediate Outcome

Applications must also address Intermediate Outcome #6 of the Settlement Program Logic Model.

Intermediate Outcome: Communities foster welcoming environments for immigrants

The aim of this outcome is to encourage partners, stakeholders and communities to tailor their services to meet newcomers’ needs, and be more inclusive and welcoming to newcomers.

Depending on the nature of your project, your application should describe:

  • How the stakeholders’, partners and communities will be able to adjust their programming to reflect the knowledge and skills acquired by the implementation of project activities. This may include changes in cultural competencies in partner organizations, capacity to integrate newcomers need into programming, ability to create friendly spaces, etc.);
  • How the project will improve the seamless delivery of settlement and other services in the community by ensuring that newcomers receive services they need from the most appropriate organizations, including Francophone organizations in the community. This may include improvement of referrals to settlement and non-settlement partners, such as employers, community organizations, mainstream service providers, employers, etc. and how the expected changes will be measured in partner organizations, and other stakeholders involved in the local community. Describe the data collection methods and performance indicators; and/or
  • A strategy for engaging partners and other participants (in measuring the changes/improvements to the delivery or coordination of services.
  • If relevant, how will you include measuring newcomers’ perspective on the changes in the community created by your activities, including sense of belonging, feeling welcomed,

7. Timelines

You have until April 30, 2019 5 pm PST to submit your application for CFP 2.

Below is a timeline of the next steps you can expect once your application has been submitted:

Timeline Milestones Date
Acknowledgement Automatic upon submission
Final Funding Decision By August 30, 2019
Contribution Agreement or Grant Negotiation Until February 2020
Contribution Agreement or Grant Signing March 2020
CFP 2 Projects Begin April 1, 2020

Funding decisions are final; there is no appeal process. Funding decisions for applications to this intake process will be made at the same time as those from the National CFP 2019.

8. Contact IRCC

For questions or clarifications related to the CFP 2, contact the Call for Proposal Coordinators. Call for Proposal Coordinators cannot provide advice on the content of your application.

For help with the Grants and Contributions System Partner Portal or functionality of the application form, contact Please note that it can take up to two business days to receive a response to your enquiry.

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