Dementia Strategic Fund: Awareness raising initiatives
This invitation to submit an application is now closed.
On this page
- Letter of intent submission process and deadline
- Other considerations in the development of the letter of intent
- Applicant capacity
- Funding details and requirements
- Contact us
- Additional resources
Budget 2019 announced $50 million over 5 years to support the implementation of key elements of Canada’s first national dementia strategy, A Dementia Strategy for Canada: Together We Aspire, by:
- increasing awareness about dementia through targeted campaigns and activities that focus on prevention and reducing stigma
- supporting access to and use of guidance, including treatment guidelines and best practices for early diagnosis
- improving our understanding of the prevalence and effects of dementia on our communities
Most of Budget 2019 funding ($40M) will be administered through the Dementia Strategic Fund (DSF), which will support a variety of activities, including the development and implementation of:
- a national public education/awareness campaign
- targeted awareness raising initiatives
- initiatives that support access to and use of dementia guidance
The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) is pleased to invite eligible organizations to submit applications for targeted awareness raising initiatives, including how to:
- prevent or delay onset
- reduce stigma, including stigmatizing behaviours
- encourage and support communities to be more dementia-inclusive
Dementia is an umbrella term used to describe a set of symptoms affecting brain function that are caused by neurodegenerative and vascular diseases or injuries. It is characterized by a decline in cognitive abilities. These abilities can include:
- awareness of person, place and time
- basic math skills
Dementia can also affect mood and behaviour.
It is estimated that more than 432,000 Canadians over the age of 65 were living with diagnosed dementia in Canada in 2016/17, two-thirds of whom were women. Age is an important risk factor for dementia and as Canada’s population ages, the number of Canadians living with dementia is expected to rise. Nine seniors are diagnosed every hour with dementia, and the risk of being diagnosed with dementia doubles with every 5-year increase in age, between the ages of 65 and 84. Statistics show that 0.8% of Canadians aged 65-69 years are diagnosed with dementia compared to 31.5% of those aged 90 years and older.
On June 17, 2019, the Government of Canada released Canada’s first national dementia strategy: A Dementia Strategy for Canada - Together We Aspire. The vision of the strategy is “a Canada in which all people living with dementia and caregivers are valued and supported, quality of life is optimized, and dementia is prevented, well understood and effectively treated”. Each of the strategy’s 3 national objectives provides a broad scope for initiatives and activities. Under each national objective, areas of focus are identified where greater efforts are required to make progress on dementia in Canada. The 3 national objectives are:
- prevent dementia
- advance therapies and find a cure
- improve the quality of life of people living with dementia and caregivers
The strategy responds to the National Strategy for Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Dementias Act which was passed in June 2017.
To support the implementation of the strategy, efforts to raise awareness of dementia through the new DSF will focus on multiple objectives:
- preventing dementia
- reducing stigma
- encouraging and enabling communities to become more dementia-inclusive
Applicants for funding to conduct an awareness initiative must select at least one of the objectives mentioned above.
Level of education, hearing loss, hypertension, obesity, smoking, depression, physical inactivity, social isolation and diabetes are factors that, if acted on, could reduce the risk of developing dementia and prevent approximately 35% of cases of dementia. Other risk factors currently being explored include alcohol use, traumatic brain injury, air and noise pollution, diet and changes in cholesterol.
For those living with dementia, stigma creates increased risk for abuse and neglect, and can result in barriers to care and support. In addition, people living with dementia and dementia caregivers can face numerous challenges accessing services, participating in their community and continuing to work while still able.
An important consideration during the assessment of a letter of intent (LOI) will be the inclusion of people living with dementia and/or dementia caregivers in the development, design and implementation of awareness initiatives that focus on stigma reduction and dementia-inclusive communities. In addition to including the perspectives of people with lived experience, the assessment of LOIs will include consideration of their alignment with the principles outlined below.
Effective messaging on dementia and dementia-inclusiveness is enhanced through multi-sectoral responses, involving shared leadership among, for example, players such as:
- non-governmental organizations
Projects are encouraged to be informed by, and/or benefit from, in-kind and/or financial support provided by partners from various sectors.
Funding applicants must demonstrate how equity, including consideration of sex and gender, as well as other identity factors (such as LGBTQ2+, age, education, geography, and income, for example), have been considered in the design, implementation and evaluation of the proposed project.
Funding applicants align awareness initiatives with Canada’s international and domestic commitments on dementia and human rights, and the principle of “respect human rights” as described in the national dementia strategy, where possible.
Funding applicants show that the proposed program or initiative is based on or informed by current best evidence and knowledge, including traditional knowledge and/or lived experience.
Projects focus on tracking progress and capturing lessons learned. Funding applications must include robust project evaluation plans to assess the outcomes and impact of planned activities.
Culturally safe and culturally appropriate
Cultural sensitivity is an essential element in designing and delivering dementia awareness initiatives, as cultural contexts and values have a strong influence on social and health-related behaviours. Applicants must demonstrate how their proposed project would take into consideration the cultural context of the populations that they are targeting.
Letter of intent submission process and deadline
The full application process consists of 2 stages. The first stage is the submission of an LOI, which will outline the proposed project. The purpose of the LOI is to identify projects that have the potential for submission of a proposal. Applicants with LOIs deemed to best fit the overall requirements of the DSF will move onto the second stage of the application process and will receive an invitation to submit a funding request (ISFR). In the ISFR, applicants will be required to complete and submit a proposal that elaborates on the project described in their LOI. The ISFR will ask for more detailed information on the applicability of the proposed project as well as the applicant's capacity to successfully conduct the proposed work.
It is anticipated that via this 2-step process, up to 15 projects could ultimately be selected through the first intake. A second intake of new projects through a similar process is expected to take place within 2 years of the completion of the first intake.
The LOI is a competitive process and all submissions are subject to screening and review. LOIs will be screened to ensure eligibility and completeness. Not all organizations that submit an LOI will be invited to submit a proposal for funding. For example, applicants with late, ineligible, incomplete or unsuccessful LOI submissions will not receive an ISFR. Applicants whose LOIs are successful will receive an ISFR to elaborate on the project proposed in the LOI.
The LOI submission includes a cover letter and PHAC's LOI template. Applicants must respect the character limit associated with each section. The maximum length for an LOI is 12 pages, single-spaced, in size 12 font. The required format is Microsoft Word.
To obtain a copy of the template, or for additional information about this call for proposals, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The deadline for submitting an LOI is 5 pm (PT) February 24, 2020. Funding will be subject to budgetary and project considerations.
Applications will be acknowledged by email. Please ensure that your email address is included in your LOI application.
Other considerations in the development of the letter of intent
Official language requirements
The Government of Canada is committed to enhancing the vitality of English and French linguistic minority communities in Canada, supporting and assisting their development, and fostering the full recognition and use of both official languages in Canadian society. Projects must be accessible in one or both official languages depending on the reach and audience. For additional information, consult the Official Languages Act.
Gender-based analysis requirements
The Government of Canada is committed to Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA+). GBA+ incorporates consideration of gender as well as other identity factors such as age, education, language, geography, culture and income in the development of policies and programs. Applicants are expected to incorporate these considerations into their submission.
Working with First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities
The impact of colonization on First Nations, Inuit and Métis in Canada has had a devastating impact on health and wellness. As a result, First Nations, Inuit and Métis in Canada face specific challenges and have unique experiences with the social determinants of health. Organizations led by First Nations, Inuit and Métis in Canada, and organizations with strong partnerships with First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities (including demonstrated collaboration) are encouraged to submit LOIs.
Recent amendments to the Lobbying Act have broadened the definition of lobbying. We encourage applicants to review the revised act and regulations to ensure compliance. For more information, refer to the Office of the Commissioner of Lobbying of Canada website.
Applicants are to provide a 1-page cover letter describing the organization. The letter must be signed by the president/chair of the board of directors or equivalent and include the following information:
- mandate of the organization
- organizational incorporation/registration number
- a description of how they and/or their collaborators bring the following organizational capacities and expertise to the project:
- experience conducting and evaluating awareness raising activities on public health issues
- expertise related to dementia, including early onset, stigma, and/or dementia-inclusive communities or models
- confirmed access to the target population for which the project is proposed (e.g., a partnership with a community organization)
- capacity to engage people living with dementia and caregivers in the development, design and implementation of the project
Funding details and requirements
PHAC is anticipating funding up to 15 projects. The recipient will receive up to $375,000 in fiscal year 2020/21 (beginning in late summer/early fall 2020) and up to $341,000 in fiscal year 2021/22. The total maximum funding available over fiscal years 2020/21 and 2021/22 is $716,000.
Projects funded under the DSF may be invited to share information with the Dementia Community Investment (DCI)’s Knowledge Hub, which is a closed community of practice for community-based projects funded by the DCI.
The following types of organizations are eligible for funding:
- not-for-profit voluntary organizations and corporations
- for-profit organizations, provided they partner with a not for profit organization
- unincorporated groups, societies and coalitions
- provincial, territorial, regional, and municipal governments and agencies
- organizations and institutions supported by provincial and territorial governments (regional health authorities, post-secondary institutions, etc.)
- Indigenous organizations working with First Nations, Inuit or Métis
Partnerships between organizations with complementary areas of expertise are strongly encouraged, as are projects involving partnerships that span more than one province/territory.
Only Canadian organizations may apply for funding under this solicitation process.
Eligible costs include such expenses as:
- Project staff salaries and wages
- Employer’s contribution to extended employee group benefits plans (dental, medical, pension benefits, RRSPs) by virtue of the collective agreement or letter of employment, combined with statutory benefits for each employee.
- Extended benefits must be offered to all part-time employees under the collective agreement or letter of employment, not solely for staff involved in PHAC agreements
- If benefits are higher than 20%, a copy of the collective agreement or letter of employment is required as justification
- Contractor fees (trainers, translation services, etc.)
Travel and accommodation
- Expenses for project activities such as private vehicle mileage, air, train or bus fares, project-related meals, and accommodation costs
Note: Kilometric rates, meals and other travel related expenses must not exceed those allowed under the National Joint Council Travel Directive.
Materials and supplies
- Office supplies
- Office/project equipment such as computers
- Equipment for adults with special needs, etc.
Note: Cost effectiveness should be considered when deciding whether to purchase or rent.
- Actual rental costs incurred and substantiated by a rental/lease agreement
- Cost incurred to rent space for off-site meetings, conferences, training (if space not available at project location)
Utilities (if not included in the rental agreement)
- Telephone, electricity, heating, etc.
- Property maintenance costs based on the square footage used for the project or other acceptable methods
- Fees for a third-party evaluation, data collection and analysis
- Actual project expenses that do not fit in the previous budget categories
- Bank charges
- Training of staff and volunteers
- Membership fees when directly related to the project
- Other indirect prorated costs portions related to the project:
- auditor fees
- insurance fees
- liability insurance (including for board members)
No project expenses may be incurred prior to the signing of a contribution agreement by all parties.
Ineligible activities and expenses
The following activities and expenses are not eligible for funding:
- Statutory and extended benefits exceeding the 20% ceiling not included in employee group benefits plans by virtue of employment/labour agreement or equivalent (dental, medical, pension benefits, RRSPs)
- Performance pay (bonus)
- Severance/separation/termination payments
- Maternity leave (including top up, which is the portion not covered under EI)
- Compensation during extended absence
Travel and accommodation
- Travel and hospitality expenses that exceed the National Joint Council rates
- Rental charges for use of recipient owned equipment (i.e., computers)
- Rental costs claimed for property/space owned by or donated to the recipient
- Capital costs such as the purchase of land, buildings, or vehicles
- Direct services which are part of the jurisdiction of other governments, (e.g., medical treatment and services)
- Costs of ongoing activities for the organization (not directly related to the funded project)
- Overhead/administrative fees expressed as a percentage of ongoing operational support of an organization
- Stand-alone activities (a “stand-alone activity” would be considered as such when there is no program intervention with a project audience, etc.), such as:
- audio visual production or website/smartphone application development and maintenance
- conferences, symposia, and workshops as stand-alone projects
- Profit-making activities, including any “fee for service” activities, such as educational events, workshops or applications offered by the recipient that would require a payment from the target population to use, register or participate
- Pure research in any discipline (Pure research is original investigation undertaken to gain new scientific or technical knowledge and understanding, but without specific applications)
NOTE: PHAC is under no obligation to enter into a funding agreement as a result of this invitation to submit an LOI.
PHAC also reserves the right to:
- reject any submission received in response to this invitation
- accept any submission in whole or in part
- cancel and/or re-issue this invitation to submit a LOI at any time
Please note that PHAC will not reimburse an applicant for costs incurred in the preparation and/or submission of a LOI or a full proposal in response to this invitation.
For further information on the risk factors for dementia, you may wish to refer to the following publications:
- Risk factors for dementia
- Risk reduction of cognitive decline and dementia: WHO guidelines
- Alcohol Consumption and Risk of Dementia and Cognitive Decline Among Older Adults With or Without Mild Cognitive Impairment
- Long-term risk of dementia among people with traumatic brain injury in Denmark: a population-based observational cohort study
- Ambient Air Pollution, Noise, and Late-Life Cognitive Decline and Dementia Risk
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