Family Innovations Test Grant - Expression of Interest

The purpose of the Expression of Interest is to provide OTF with the information needed to assess your project and your group’s eligibility. It’s the first step and the foundation of the Grant Application.

<p>If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, your group will be invited to submit the Grant Application with an Organizational Mentor. You will be able to update certain questions at the grant application stage – and those questions are noted below.</p>

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Tab 1: Type of Grant

Question 1. The Family Innovations Stream has two different types of grants.  Each grant type has a different purpose and eligibility criteria. Which grant type are you interested in?

  • Family Innovations Test grant
  • Family Innovations Scale grant

A Family Innovations Test grant is an opportunity for groups to test a new idea, strategize around an issue in their community, or research an issue that matters to the group.

A Family Innovations Scale grant is for more established groups that have already delivered core project activities over a two-year period. These groups are able to demonstrate the success of the model that is being scaled. If you are not sure which grant type is right for your group, email us at yof@otf.ca.

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will not be able to change or update your responses in this section of the grant application.


Project Type

Question 2. Funding for Family Innovations Test grants is for specific purposes. Will your project: (Check all that apply)

  • Pilot a new idea
  • Research an issue or new concept
  • Strategize around an issue affecting YOF parents, guardians, and caregivers
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Tab 2: Group Profile

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will not be able to change or update your responses in this section of the grant application.

Group Name and Contact Information

Question 3. Enter the contact information for your group:

  • Group name, address, city, province, postal code, phone and email.
If your group does not have a permanent address, enter your primary contact’s postal code.  

 

Question 4. Enter the contact information for your primary contact:

  • Contact name, phone number and email
This person should be a member of the core group and included in the core group table.


Question 5. Enter the contact information for your secondary contact:

  • Contact name, phone number and email
This person should be a member of the core group and included in the core group table.


Online Presence

Question 6. If your group is active on social media, provide the social media platforms (e.g. Facebook, Instagram etc.) and handles you operate under.

As part of the assessment process, OTF reviews the online presence of all applicants to ensure they meet OTF’s Eligibility Policy. This includes assessing for these ineligible activities:

  • The applicant has a history of engaging in political activity supporting or opposing any political party, elected representative, or candidate for public office, and/or
  • The applicant has a main purpose and/or uses major resources to bring about change in law or government policy.


Group Structure

Question 7. Select the organization type that best describes your organization/group. (Check only one)

  • Grassroots group that is not registered as a charity or as an incorporated not-for-profit.
  • An organization incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation without share capital in a Canadian jurisdiction (this includes a Chartered Community Council, operating under the Métis Nation of Ontario, or Inuit communities that are registered as not-for-profit corporations without share capital in Canada)
  • A First Nation
  • Incorporated not-for-profits may be eligible to apply to the Family Innovations Stream. We will need more information to make that assessment.
  • Registered charities are not eligible in the Family Innovations Stream.
  • First Nations are not eligible to apply to the Youth Innovations and Family Innovations Streams. However, if you are a grassroots group from a First Nation, you are eligible to apply as a ‘Grassroots group that is not registered as a charity or as an incorporated not-for-profit’. Your group cannot have more than 50% of its members as part of the band office or band council.
If you are unsure about how to answer this question, please email the YOF Team at yof@otf.ca.


If "unincorporated grassroots group" is selected:

  • What year did your group form?
  • Groups applying for a Test grant can be a newly formed group working together.
  • Groups applying for a Scale grant are more established and have at least two years of experience working together to serve the same demographic as the primary beneficiaries selected for this application.


If "incorporated" is selected:

  • Provide your incorporation number.
  • Provide your year of incorporation.
  • As an incorporated not-for-profit, have you independently managed funds with no administrative support from an Organizational Mentor, platform, trustee and/or charitable organization? Yes/No
Check "Yes" if you have received funds directly from the funder to your organization's business account, managed these funds throughout the life of a project, and reported back to funders on the use of these funds.

Check "No" if you received funding for a project but these funds were administered by another organization.


If "incorporated" and "managed own funds" are selected:

  • How much funding did you manage in total in the last fiscal year (2023)?
  • How much funding did you manage independently, without administrative oversight of a trustee or organizational mentor in the last fiscal year (2023)?
  • How much funding did you manage independently in the fiscal year before last (2022)?
To be eligible for the Family Innovations Stream, your incorporated not-for-profit cannot have managed more than $50,000 independently in each of the last two years.
  • Example 1: Last year, you managed $25,000 independently and the year before that you managed $5,000 independently. You are eligible for funding.
  • Example 2: Last year, you managed $50,000 independently and the year before that you also managed $50,000 independently. You are eligible for funding.
  • Example 3: Last year, you managed $70,000 independently and the year before that you managed $25,000 independently. You are not eligible to apply to the Family Innovations Stream.
We can help if you are not sure how to answer these questions. Email us at yof@otf.ca.


If "incorporated" and "managed own funds" are selected: 

Board of Directors

  • Provide your current board list including their name, term start and end date, position and arm’s length information. The term end dates for board members must be on or after the grant application deadline date.

Arm’s length

To be eligible for funding, at least 50% of your board members must maintain an arm’s length relationship to each other.

An ‘arm's length’ relationship means board members and organization executives are not married or related to each other, do not work as business partners or are otherwise in a relationship where interests may be compromised.
  • Answer "Yes" if: board members and organization executives are not married or related to each other, do not work as business partners or are otherwise in a relationship where interests may be compromised.
  • Answer "No" if: board members and organization executives are married or related to each other, do work as business partners or are otherwise in a relationship where interests may be compromised.


Group Experiences

Question 8: Tell us about how and why your group was formed, and your connections to community. (300 words max.)

Share 1 or 2 examples of previous activities your group has delivered for your primary beneficiaries in your community. How is your work supported by community?
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Tab 3: Project Leaders

Question 9: Your core group members are or have experience with: (Check only those that apply to your core group members)

  • Indigenous parents, guardians, and caregivers
    • First Nations
    • Métis
    • Inuit
  • Black parents, guardians, and caregivers
  • Racialized parents, guardians, and caregivers
  • Newcomer parents, guardians, and caregivers
  • Francophone parents, guardians, and caregivers
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers and/or their children who are two-spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and/or questioning, intersex, asexual (2SLGBTQIA+)
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers and/or their children living with disabilities or special needs
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers living in rural, remote and/or Northern communities
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers and/or their children in conflict or at risk of being in conflict with the law
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers at risk of contact or in contact with child welfare services
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers in low-income situations
  • Parents, guardians and caregivers who are homeless or at risk of being homeless
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers whose children are at-risk of dropping out or have dropped out of school
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers and/or their children living with mental health needs and/or addictions
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers whose children are not engaged and/or are at risk of not being engaged with education, employment, and training programs

Grassroots work is about community-led and community-inspired work. Shared identities and shared lived experiences are critical to our understanding of the term 'grassroots'.

This stream is a place for parents, guardians and caregivers to organize around issues they face, to imagine solutions, to test new ideas and to scale them.

It is required that core group members share identities and experiences with the parents, guardians and caregivers they hope to engage.

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.


If "Black" is selectedIs your group Black-led? Yes/No

If "Indigenous" is selected: Is your group Indigenous-led? Yes/No


Core Group Table

Question 10. Complete the Core Group Table.

A core group member is someone who is playing or will play an active role in decision making and planning for your group, including delivery of project activities, project administration, etc.

Complete every column for every member of your core group.

  • Describe the different roles and responsibilities people play
  • List the knowledge, lived experience, and skills they bring
  • If your group is an incorporated not-for-profit, you must include your board members in the core group table.  

Arm’s length

To be eligible for funding, at least 50% of your core group members must maintain an arm’s length relationship to each other. If you are registered as a not-for-profit, this includes your board members.

An ‘arm's length’ relationship means core group members and organization executives are not married or related to each other, do not work as business partners or are otherwise in a relationship where interests may be compromised.

For each core group member, you will be asked the following questions: 

  • Name 
  • Email  
  • Are they a parent, guardian, or caregiver of a child or young person?  Yes/No
  • Are they at arm’s-length to all members? Yes/No 
    • If "No" is selected: Define the relationship between members 
  • How long has this person been part of the grassroots group and what is their role? If your group is new, what role do you expect them to play in the group? 
    • For example: This person first became involved with the group in 2019 as the Volunteer Relations and Member Services staff. They will oversee and coordinate the volunteers who will be part of the support circles and training workshops.  They will recruit volunteers to be mentors and workshop facilitators. They will also guide them to our group and project. This person will work part-time (7 hours per week on average) 
  • To the degree that you are comfortable and able, share lived experiences and knowledge that they bring that are relevant to this project. 
    • For example: They are the founding member of the organization and have focused on recruiting and orienting our new members. This person lived in the community their whole life and is a mentor to other young Black women starting high school. This was something they didn’t have growing up and wished they did.  That's why they created this group for Black young women. 
  • Share professional/ volunteer experience and skills that are relevant to this project. 
    • For Example: Leading our group and organizing the support circles and training workshops helped this person stay organized and learn how to network. They grew the membership of our group to 5 people in the first 3 months. They recruit and train volunteers through their volunteer work at their local community centre (past 4 years). They have strong administrative skills through their day job (use Excel to manage program data and office budget). 
If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.
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Tab 4: Project Idea

Describing the Issue and Idea

Question 11. Provide a brief overview and purpose of your group’s idea. (350 words max.)

Describe what you will do, who it will benefit and where your work will happen.

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.


Question 12. Describe and list all major activities that your group will deliver for parents, guardians and caregivers. (400 words max.)

  • How will you deliver these activities?
  • How often will you deliver these activities?
  • How many primary beneficiaries do you intend to engage in each activity?

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.


Question 13. What needs or issues is your group trying to address through this project? (350 words max.)

In answering this question, consider:
  • What are the systemic barriers and issues your group is trying to address? 
  • What needs, or issues are you trying to address?
  • Are there things in your community you are interested in enhancing or protecting?
  • Are there gaps your group is trying to fill?


Project Location

Question 14. Where will project activities take place? (Check only one)

  • In the Greater Toronto Area (GTA)
  • Outside the Greater Toronto Area (GTA)
  • In both the GTA and outside of the GTA
  • Select the region where the majority of your activities will take place.
  • GTA includes Toronto, Halton, Durham, Peel and York only. It does not include Hamilton.
  • If your project will be delivered primarily on-line/virtually, check those regions that are most critical for the success of your project. For example, if your project will test a virtual platform for social connections between First Nations families living in remote communities, check outside of the Greater Toronto Area.


Question 15. In which OTF catchment area will your project have the greatest impact? (Check all that apply)

  • Find your catchment and census division.
  • If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.


Question 16. Please select the census divisions to indicate more specific regions where your project activities will take place. (Check at least one)

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.


Question 17. Select the community size that is the primary focus of your project. (Check only one)

  • Rural or Small Communities (20,000 or less)
  • Mid-size Communities (20,001 - 100,000)
  • Urban Centres and Metropolitan Suburbs (over 100,000) 
  • If you will have an impact in many communities, select the one where the majority of work will happen.
  • If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage. 

 


Upload Supporting Documents

Question 18. Upload supporting documents (optional).

You may upload up to five (5) pictures or supporting documents, or provide a link to pictures, that will provide a greater explanation of your project. Please include a short description of each item.

Files must be uploaded in one of the following formats: pdf, jpg, jpeg, gif, doc, docx, txt, odt, ods, png, bmp, tif, tiff, xls, or xlsx.
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Tab 5: Project Impact

Describing the Outcome and Beneficiaries

Question 19. Select the YOF outcome that most aligns with the change you want to make through this project. (Check only one)

  • Supporting parents, guardians and caregivers to navigate and access resources for economic stability
  • Supporting parents, guardians and caregivers to effectively navigate, access, and influence systems that affect family well-being
  • Create opportunities for Indigenous and/or Black parents, guardians and caregivers to help families build strong community and cultural connections, strengthen relationships, and heal from trauma
If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.

 

Question 20. Identify the population(s) that are the primary beneficiaries of your project using the list below. Your primary beneficiaries are your “YOF parents, guardians and caregivers”. (Select at least one)

  • Indigenous parents, guardians, and caregivers (i.e., First Nations, Métis, Inuit);
    • First Nations
    • Métis
    • Inuit
  • Black parents, guardians, and caregivers.
  • Racialized parents, guardians, and caregivers.
  • Newcomer parents, guardians, and caregivers.
  • Francophone parents, guardians, and caregivers.
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers and/or their children who are two-spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and/or questioning, intersex, asexual (2SLGBTQIA+)
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers and/or their children living with disabilities or special needs.
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers living in rural, remote and/or Northern communities.
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers and/or their children in conflict or at risk of being in conflict with the law.
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers at risk of contact or in contact with child welfare services.
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers in low-income situations.
  • Parents, guardians and caregivers who are or at risk of being homeless
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers whose children are at-risk of dropping out or have dropped out of school.
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers and/or their children living with mental health needs and/or addictions
  • Parents, guardians, and caregivers whose children are not engaged or are at risk of not being engaged with education, employment, or training programs
  • Check only those identities and lived experiences of the parents, guardians and caregivers (your beneficiaries) that you are specifically looking to engage and you have designed your program to benefit.
  • When selecting Indigenous (First Nations, Métis or Inuit), members can be from urban, rural and/or on reserve communities.

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.

 

Question 21: Tell us more about the parents, guardians, and caregivers your group will engage through this project. What are their lived experiences? How are they affected by the issues you would like to address? (300 words max.)


Describing the Impact

Question 22. What are the most important changes you expect to see in your selected primary beneficiaries? Focus on sharing changes that can be achieved through your project activities. Identify a minimum of three changes, up to a maximum of six. (50 words max for each change)

Each change statement should be clear and concise and should reflect the change you want to achieve through your selected priority outcome.

Some changes can happen almost immediately, and others can take a little longer to happen. Some examples of immediate changes are changes in knowledge, skill levels or attitudes about oneself and others. Other types of changes may take longer. For example, changes in behaviour, relationships or leadership.

Use change words such as: increased, enhanced, strengthened, improved, expanded, prevented, reduced etc. After you write your change statements, take a final look to make sure you can achieve all of these through your project activities.
  • Example: Indigenous parents, guardians, and caregivers have increased their cultural knowledge and understanding of Traditional ceremonies and activities.
  • Example: Black parents, guardians, and caregivers have increased their knowledge of policies, rights, regulations, and structures within the justice and penal systems,
  • Example: Newcomer mothers will know how to research and apply for higher education (university, college etc.)

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.


Question 23. On average, how many parents, guardians and caregivers will directly benefit from your project through the life of the grant?

When conducting a research project, only include those parents, guardians and caregivers who make up the project's research team (including group members, researchers, analysts, and any parents, guardians and caregivers who plays a consistent and significant role in your research project). Only count a person once even if you will have multiple touchpoints with them. If approved for funding, this number will be included in the grant contract.

  • Example: You have funding for 2 years. Your project runs on a 10-week cycle. You plan to have 15 mothers participate in each cycle. You plan to deliver 2 cycles per year. The number of people benefitting is 60 (15 mothers x 2 cycles per year x 2 years of funding).

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.

 

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Tab 6: Process

Request Term

Question 24. What is the request term? (Check only one)

  • 1 year
  • 2 years
  • 3 years

This is the total number of years you will receive funding if your application is approved.

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.


Project Plan and Budget 

Please build your Project Plan and Budget with the following start date in mind: Project Start Date: March 1, 2024.

Question 25. Complete the Project Plan.

  • The Project Plan is a tool to plan all the major activities and milestones in your project. Try to anticipate all the major activities and milestones.
  • Take your time working on this as it will help you complete the budget.

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.


Question 26. Complete the Budget.

Based on your completed Budget, you are requesting xx. This number auto-populates based on the information submitted in the Budget.

  • Try to anticipate all the expenses.
  • Note that a minimum of $2,000 per year and a maximum of $4,000 per year can be spent on capacity building.
  • Please avoid any quotation marks (“…”) in the Budget fields (including Notes) as the system will not save your work if these are detected.

If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.

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Tab 7: Organizational Mentor (OM) Information

Question 27. Has your group identified an Organizational Mentor for this project? Yes/No

If "No" is selected: Do you need information or support to find Organizational Mentor? Yes/No

If "Yes" is selected: What is the name and contact information of the organization that has agreed to be your Organizational Mentor?

  • Organization Name
  • Contact Name and Position
  • Telephone
  • Email
If your Expression of Interest is shortlisted, you will be able to edit this question at the grant application stage.
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Tab 8: Group Acknowledgements

  • We acknowledge that the majority of our core group members share identities and experiences with the parents, guardians, and caregivers we want to engage through this project.
  • We acknowledge that our core group has at least three members.
  • We acknowledge that more than 50% of our core group members are at an arm’s length relationship to each other.
  • We acknowledge that all project activities will take place in Ontario.
  • If our project is approved for funding, our group agrees to participate in YOF-led capacity building activities.
  • If our project is approved for funding, our group agrees to participate in a YOF evaluation process led by an external partner.
  • If our project is approved for funding, our group agrees to work with an
    Organizational Mentor.
  • The information contained in this application and the accompanying documents is true, accurate and complete.
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