Economic Recovery and Resilience Fund

Strengthening the long-term economic resilience for Black children, youth and young adults in Ontario.

Next deadline

September 28, 2022, 5 PM ET

Term length

Maximum 24 months

Amount awarded (per year)

Minimum N/A

Maximum $125,000

Create pathways to success

As part of the 2020 Budget, Ontario's Action Plan: Protect, Support, Recover, the Government of Ontario announced new investments to enhance existing Black Youth Action Plan initiatives. These investments will further support Black children and youth in achieving social and economic success.

On behalf of the Ministry of Citizenship and Multiculturalism, the Youth Opportunities Fund is offering one-time, two-year grants to Black-led and Black-focused organizations through the Economic Recovery and Resilience Fund. 

Funding will be invested in locally developed projects outside of the Greater Toronto Area that support Black children, youth and young adults at different stages in their lives and careers. In alignment with the vision of the Black Youth Action Plan, projects need to help create the conditions where youth beneficiaries thrive in high-opportunity careers and build individual pathways to success.

Eligible projects need to:

  • build skills and knowledge
  • create opportunities for safe, meaningful work
  • provide access to relevant networks 

We also recognize that engagement and collaboration with parents, guardians and caregivers are fundamental in supporting children and youth in meaningful and impactful ways.

Guiding principles

Projects funded need to be informed by a common set of guiding principles in line with the Ministry’s vision of economic empowerment:  

  • Promoting cultural safety: Initiatives support Black children, youth, and young adults to cultivate and enhance their identity, culture, and sense of belonging to their community as an important factor in working towards their goals.
  • Celebrating Black excellence: Initiatives seek opportunities to recognize the achievements, successes, and contributions of Ontario’s Black communities. Knowledge of the rich culture and history of Ontario’s Black communities is foregrounded and celebrated.
  • Challenging anti-Black racism: Initiatives actively work to combat historical and ongoing anti-Black racism and create encouraging and supportive environments for Black children, youth, and young adults to thrive.
  • Removing financial barriers: Initiatives are designed to be accessible and remove financial barriers for participating Black children, youth, young adults and families as they engage in programming. 

Important Dates and Deadlines

Pre-application coaching call complete September 7, 2022
Organization Registration  September 7, 2022
Grant application deadline September 28, 2022, 5 PM ET
Project start date January 3, 2023

 

Plan your application

Organizations interested in applying for a grant need to be anchored in Black culture and need to demonstrate a strong connection to the Black community. This includes:

  • Being dedicated to improving access and opportunities for Black people.
  • Having a strong commitment to engaging, listening, and learning from Black community members on an ongoing basis.
  • Being explicit in the work that aims to improve the economic wellbeing of Black children, youth, and young adults.
  • Having a strong connection to the Black community, a well-established reputation, and a successful history and track record of serving the Black community.  

Application questions

Review the grant application questions and the eligibility requirements on this page to ensure your organization and project are a good fit for this fund.

Eligibility

Discover if your organization and project are eligible for funding.

Eligible applicants

Any one of the following organizations may be eligible for funding:

  • A charitable organization or foundation registered with the Canada Revenue Agency
  • An organization incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation without share capital in a Canadian jurisdiction
  • A collaboration of two or more organizations may be eligible, where the lead organization meets OTF eligibility criteria, and accepts responsibility for the application and grant including financial and reporting accountability. Refer to OTF's Collaborative Applicants Policy.

For more information, review OTF’s Eligibility Policy.

In addition to meeting OTF’s Eligibility Policy, organizations that are registered charities or not-for-profit must meet one of the following categories: 

  • A Black-led organization:
    • Black identity is at the centre of the organization's mandate and programming
    • Majority of the governance structure is held by Black people
    • Black staff are included at the executive and senior level, and in all decision-making and service delivery positions within the organization 
  • A Black-focused organization:
    • Programming for Black communities is part of the organization’s commitment 
    • Black people are represented within the governance structure 
    • Black staff are involved in the delivery of culturally responsive programs and services 
  • A Collaborative that include at least one eligible member (the “lead organization”).
    • The lead organization must be a Black-led or Black-focused organization.
    • The collaborative must include partners from sectors and backgrounds relevant to the focus of the project. This includes Black-led organizations, organizations led by and serving Black communities, grassroots groups, youth-led groups, and community networks. 

Primary beneficiaries

Projects need to benefit:

  • Black children, youth, and young adults between the ages of 6 and 25, and/or 
  • Black children, youth, and young adults living with special needs between the ages of 6 and 29 years.

Geographic scope

The Economic Recovery and Resilience Fund is available to Black-led and Black-focused organizations and collaboratives in rural, midsize and urban communities outside the Greater Toronto Area. 

Organizations based in York, Durham, Toronto, Peel and Halton (GTA) are not eligible.

Project eligibility

Your project may be eligible if it:

  • Strongly aligns with one Economic Recovery and Resilience Fund outcome.
  • Complies with OTF policies. Our policy requirements define eligibility for OTF funding and outline exclusions. Funds are granted to eligible applicants delivering eligible project activities that directly align with one of the outcomes of this fund.
  • Carries out all project activities in Ontario.
  • Is a new or existing project.
     

Application process

YOF’s application process involves various steps for organizations.

Book a required pre-application coaching call
Register your organization

Once your organization has completed the pre-application coaching call, you are ready to register your organization with OTF.

  • If your organization is new to OTF, you need to register your organization.
  • If your organization is already registered with OTF, please reach out to yof@otf.ca. The YOF team will check if you need to update any information in your organizational profile.
  • If you are applying as a collaborative, the lead organization will need to register their organization with OTF after they have completed a pre-application coaching call.

YOF will verify the eligibility of all organizations at this step.

Submit your grant application
  • Organizations need to complete their pre-application coaching call and organization registration prior to accessing the grant application. 
  • The grant application deadline is September 28, 2022 at 5 PM ET
Notification

All applicants will receive news on the status of their grant application approximately 3 months after the deadline.

After approval
  • Start date: The start date is January 3, 2023 
  • Reporting & monitoring: In addition to scheduled touch points throughout the year, grantees are responsible for tracking activities, spending, and learnings. This will help with completing the progress report and/or the final report. 
  • Evaluation: Grantees will report on key metrics and learnings in their progress report and/or final report and share the impact of their project.  
  • Completion: After the final report is approved, the grant hold back funds are released, and the grant is closed. Grant hold back funds are 10% of the total approved grant amount. 
  • Grantee compliance: A random sample of grants are subject to a Grantee Compliance Audit. Grants can be audited for compliance at any point within the grant's life, or after the grant has been closed. 

Choose an outcome

Organizations will need to select one outcome that aligns with their project. In the grant application, explain how the project will work toward enhancing this outcome for Black children, youth, and young adults.

1. Ensure that Black children and youth have the skills, knowledge, and supports they need to succeed in education and the job market of today and in the future.  

Eligible projects can include, but are not limited to, the following: 

  • Support Black children and youth as they navigate critical transitions in their lives (transition to middle school, secondary school, post-secondary institutions, and school-to-work transitions).
  • Connect Black children and youth to peer and educational mentors with shared identities and experiences. 
  • Provide opportunities for Black children and youth to explore STEM and other “in demand” career pathways through age-appropriate exposure activities. 
  • Enhance job readiness and employability of Black youth through skill-building workshops. 
  • Enhance job readiness and employability of Black children and youth by building confidence and self-efficacy.

2. Ensure that Black youth and young adults are supported to find and keep meaningful, safe, and dignified work in line with their skills, potential, and career aspirations. 

Eligible projects can include, but are not limited to, the following: 

  • Support Black youth and young adults to navigate, explore, and access sectors of interest. 
  • Provide opportunities for Black youth and young adults to build professional networks.
  • Connect Black youth and young adults to professional mentors working in sectors of interest.
  • Provide opportunities for Black youth and young adults to participate in leadership programs. 
  • Support workplaces to create safer, inclusive, and equitable work environments in which Black youth and young adults can thrive. 

3. Ensure that Black youth and young adults in Ontario are supported to succeed in entrepreneurship/business building and create jobs. 

Eligible projects can include, but are not limited to, the following: 

  • Provide opportunities for Black youth and young adults to build skills and a mindset for entrepreneurship. 
  • Connect Black youth and young adults to business coaches and mentors. 
  • Engage young, Black innovators in business incubator and accelerator programs.
  • Support Black youth and young adults to have the knowledge and essential skills to run a business. 

Definitions

Specific to the Economic Recovery and Resilience Fund, we have defined Black-led, Black-focused, and collaborative organizations.

 

 

What is a Black-led organization?

  • Black identity is at the centre of the organization's mandate and programming
  • Majority of the governance structure is held by Black people
  • Black staff are included at the executive and senior level, and in all decision-making and service delivery positions within the organization 

What is a Black-focused organization?

  • Programming for Black communities is part of the organization’s commitment 
  • Black people are represented within the governance structure 
  • Black staff are involved in the delivery of culturally responsive programs and services

What is a collaborative? 

Collaboratives include at least one eligible member (the “lead organization”).

  • The lead organization must be a Black-led or Black-focused organization.
  • The collaborative must include partners from sectors and backgrounds relevant to the focus of the project. This includes Black-led organizations, organizations led by and serving Black communities, grassroots groups, youth-led groups, and community networks.

Project costs

Review the eligible project costs listed below and only include eligible items in the grant application. All costs must be reasonable and directly attributable to the project.

Costs that can be funded include: 

Direct personnel costs

  • Full-time staff salary funded specifically to carry out the project
  • Part-time staff salary funded specifically to carry out the project

Direct Non-Personnel Costs: All non-personnel costs directly related to project delivery 

  • Purchased services: Services purchased including the services of consultants/contractors/subject experts specifically relating to the delivery of the project. 
  • Equipment Purchase or Rental
  • Materials and supplies 
  • Travel
  • Food: specifically related to the delivery of the project
  • Honorariums: To acknowledge, in a small way, the contributions of community leaders and elders.
  • Communications: promotional material, website, flyers, ads, etc.
  • Capacity Building and Professional Development; Up to a maximum of $3,000 per year 
  • Learning and Evaluation costs: Up to a maximum of 10% of the total grant request budget can be used for planning and executing an evaluation of your grant project. This amount is only for the evaluation of your grant project 

Overhead and Administration Costs

YOF will support overhead and administrative costs directly associated with the funded project, up to a maximum of 15% of the total YOF Grant Budget. 

Please note that 10% of the awarded funding will be held back, to be paid upon satisfactory review of the final report.

  • Capital infrastructure projects (renovations to space) 
  • Costs related to political or religious activities 
  • General or ongoing operating costs (unrelated to the project) 
  • Bursaries, scholarships, sponsorships or individual requests (including regranting funds to other projects or people)
  • Fundraising campaigns

For a full list of ineligible costs, review OTF’s Eligibility Policy.

Application assessment

YOF staff and Grant Review Committee members will use the following criteria to assess your grant application. This assessment criteria can help guide you as you write your grant application.

Assessment Area: Project eligibility

Key areas of your application to focus on:

  • The organization meets all OTF Policy requirements.   
  • The organization demonstrates they are Black-led or Black-focused.
  • The organization is based in Ontario, and outside of the Greater Toronto Area.
  • All project activities are taking place outside of the Greater Toronto Area. 
  • The project is aligned with one Economic Recovery and Resilience Fund outcome.
  • The requested amount does not exceed the annual funding amount. 
  • The application is complete.

Assessment is a Yes or a No.

Assessment Area: Organization

The appropriate organization has the experience and capacity to advance the Economic Recovery and Resilience Fund outcome for Black children, youth and/or young adults over the life of the grant.

Scoring weight: 40%

Key areas of your application to focus on:

  • The organization has the experience and capacity to deliver initiatives that benefit Black children, youth and/or young adults. 
  • The organization’s activities demonstrate a commitment to one or more Economic Recovery and Resilience Fund guiding principle. 
  • The organization has the community relationships and legitimacy to implement programming effectively. 

Assessment Area: Strategy and Impact

The strategy is appropriate for implementing the project to support the advancement of the selected Economic Recovery and Resilience Fund outcome for Black children, youth and/or young adults.

Scoring weight: 35%

Key areas of your application to focus on:

  • The project activities are designed to meet the experiences, needs and interests of the selected beneficiaries.
  • There is clear alignment between the selected outcome and the project, and it’s clearly demonstrated how the project will contribute to the outcome.
  • The project demonstrates a strong potential to achieve the changes based on the design of the project and selected beneficiaries.

Assessment Area: Process

The Project Plan and Budget are appropriate for the proposed project.

Scoring weight: 25%

Key areas of your application to focus on:

  • Project activities are clearly defined.
  • There are feasible steps to achieve project activities in the stated timeline.
  • Project activities, Project Plan, and Budget are reasonable and aligned.