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Funding Round-Up: Winter Grants for First Nations

Sunset over the Great Bear Sea
Up and down the coast, First Nations are leading on projects that protect sensitive ecosystems, create family-supporting jobs, and revive traditional values and practices. (Photo: Andrew S. Wright)

First Nations working to manage their territories and invest in their communities may be eligible to apply for funding from Crown governments, philanthropic foundations, and corporate community investment programs. And, through Coast Funds,  PARTICIPATING FIRST NATIONS in the Great Bear Rainforest and Haida Gwaii may have FUNDING available for stewardship, conservation, and economic development projects in addition to fundraising support.  

On this page, Coast Funds team members have compiled a list of additional funding opportunities for First Nations with deadlines in the winter.  

Disclaimer: Coast Funds has made a reasonable effort to gather and check information. However, details and timelines for grant programs can change. When looking for funding, please check eligibility and program details on the funding organization’s webpage.  

Arts, Language, and Culture 

Library and Archives Canada: Listen, Hear Our Voices 

Funding to support Indigenous Nations, other governments, and non-profit organizations in digitizing existing records related to Indigenous languages and cultures. This funding will also support building skills, knowledge, and resources needed to digitize and preserve documentary heritage. 

  • Grant range: Up to $24,999 (small projects); Up to $100,000 (large projects) 
  • Location: Canada-wide  
  • Application deadline: January 31, 2024 

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Northern Development Initiative Trust: Cultural Infrastructure 

The cultural infrastructure program supports creation or improvement of arts, heritage, culture, and creative innovation spaces. 

  • Grant range: $100,000 to $300,000 
  • Location: Northern Development’s region covers approximately 70 per cent of the province of British Columbia, Canada. The region encompasses 39 municipalities, nine regional districts, one regional municipality and 89 First Nations communities. Details 
  • Application deadline: Dates of NDIT’s new intake structure will remain consistent on an annual basis and will be January 31, April 30, and July 31 

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Community Development 

Indigenous Partnership Fund 

Support for ongoing consultation and cooperation with Indigenous peoples to implement the Government of Canada’s continued efforts to break down barriers, combat systemic racism and discrimination, close socio-economic gaps, and promote greater equality and prosperity for Indigenous peoples. 

  • Grant range: Community: $30,000 to $50,000; Regional: $75,000 to $100,000; Provincial/Territorial/National: $75,000 to $150,000. 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: January 30, 2024 

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Indigenous Services Canada: Professional and Institutional Development Program 

This program funds projects that develop the capacity of First Nations and Inuit communities to perform core functions of government such as planning and risk management, leadership, administration, and financial management. 

  • Grant range: N/A 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: Contact your funding services officer in your Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) regional office for the deadline in your region. 

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New Relationship Trust: Declaration Act Engagement Fund 

The Declaration Act Engagement Fund provides multi-year funding for First Nations to support their capacity to engage with the Province of BC on the implementation of the Declaration Act Action Plan and alignment of provincial laws with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).  

  • Grant range: Up to $1,040,000 over four years 
  • Location: British Columbia 
  • Application deadline: Open 

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Northern Development Initiative Trust: Community Places 

This fund supports the creation, restoration, or enhancement of community spaces that will improve amenities and enhance overall quality of life.  

  • Grant range: $30,000 
  • Location: Northern British Columbia (see eligibility) 
  • Application deadline: January 31, April 30, and July 31 

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Oshki Wupoowane: The Blanket Fund 

The Blanket provides support for Indigenous cultural, artistic, and educational activities. Offered through two grant streams (Reconciliation Action Grants and Capacity Building Grants), The Blanket Fund can be accessed by both grassroots Indigenous communities and organizations, and by Indigenous individuals undertaking related community initiatives. 

  • Grant range: up to $175,000/year (multi-year grants are available). 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: Open 

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Economic Development 

BC Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation: First Nations Clean Energy Business Fund (FNCEBF) – Capacity Funding 

The FNCEBF aims to promote increased Indigenous community participation in the clean energy sector within their traditional territories and treaty areas through agreements between the BC Government and the eligible applicant. 

  • Grant range: Up to $50,000 per applicant regardless of the number of potential projects in the applicant’s traditional territory. Up to $30,000 for community energy plans. Up to $50,000 for feasibility studies and business planning 
  • Location: British Columbia 
  • Application deadline: April 30, 2024  

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Fisheries and Oceans Canada: Pacific Integrated Commercial Fisheries Initiative  

This initiative provides funding to increase First Nations’ access to commercial fisheries in British Columbia and Yukon. The program seeks to build BC and Yukon First Nations communities’ capacity to fish and to operate commercial fishing enterprises (CFEs); improve the business and operational capacities of First Nations’ CFEs and aquaculture businesses; and strengthen community economic self-sufficiency.   

  • Funding range: N/A 
  • Location: The application process is open to First Nations in the Pacific Region that currently do not participate in PICFI, as well as individual shareholder Nations of CFEs. 
  • Application deadline: January 19, 2024  

LEARN MORE >   

Indigenous Leadership Fund (Low Carbon Economy Fund) 

The Indigenous Leadership Fund is a new program under the Low Carbon Economy Fund. The funding is available to support climate action by Indigenous peoples, including Indigenous-owned and led renewable energy, energy efficiency, and low-carbon heating projects. 

  • Funding range: Up to $6 million per project 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: Ongoing through March 31, 2027 

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Island Coastal Economic Trust: Capital and Innovation Program 

Funding to support the development of vital regional and community-based public amenities and services to support sustainable economic diversification and growth, innovation, as well as enhanced quality of life. 

  • Grant range: $200,000 
  • Location: Vancouver Island, the southern Great Bear Rainforest, the Sunshine Coast, and islands and inlets from the Salish Sea to Cape Caution. Details 
  • Application deadline: February 16, 2024 

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Northern Development Initiative Trust: Economic Infrastructure 

Funding to support projects of regional and local significance that contribute to economic growth and stronger communities. These projects include renovations or new construction of public multi-use facilities or capital investments that drive revenue and job creation within the community. 

  • Grant range: $100,000 to $300,000 
  • Location: Northern British Columbia (see eligibility) 
  • Application deadline: January 31, 2024 

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Northern Development Initiative Trust: Marketing Initiatives Program 

This program supports new marketing campaigns or projects that position a community or region to take advantage of opportunities that support economic vitality and diversification. 

  • Grant range: $20,000 
  • Location: Northern British Columbia (see eligibility) 
  • Application deadline: January 31, April 30, and July 31 

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Rural Transit Solutions Fund 

This fund seeks to help Canadians living in rural and remote areas get around their communities more easily for their day-to-day activities, and connect with other communities nearby. 

  • Grant range: $50,000 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: Open 

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Smart Renewables and Electrification Pathways Program (SREPs): Capacity Building Stream & Indigenous Engagement Grants Stream 

The Capacity Building stream supports communities in acquiring the knowledge and tools needed to strengthen and/or develop their ability to participate in and meaningfully benefit from renewable energy,energy storage, and grid modernization projects. This program stream also supports efforts to enhance inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA). 

  • Grant range: Up to $2 million per project (up to four fiscal years) 

The Indigenous Engagement Grants stream supports Indigenous communities and/or Indigenous organizations seeking to access resources and expertise to inform decision-making on their involvement in and/or support of a proposed renewable energy, and/or energy storage projects. 

  • Grant range: Up to $150,000 over 3 years or less (up to $50,000/fiscal year) 

Both streams: 

  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: January 31, 2024 

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Environmental Stewardship 

2 Billion Trees Program 

This program aims to motivate and support new tree planting projects. Over a period of 10 years, by 2031, up to $3.2 billion will be invested in tree planting efforts to support provinces, territories, third-party organizations (for-profit and not-for profit), and Indigenous organizations to plant two billion trees across Canada. 

  • Grant range: N/A 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: Various application deadlines. Details 

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Climate-Resilient Coastal Communities Program: Indigenous-Led Stream  

This program will provide funding to enable Indigenous communities and sectors to work together at a regional scale to co-develop coordinated actions that increase climate resilience in coastal regions. 

  • Grant range: 70-100% of total project costs 
  • Location: Canada-wide (coastal communities) 
  • Application deadline: Open 

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Commission for Environmental Cooperation: North American Partnership for Environmental Community Action 

Grants aim to support climate adaptation in North America by engaging and empowering communities, particularly Indigenous and local communities, in applying Indigenous knowledge to strengthen community-based resilience to climate change. 

  • Grant range: $185,000 
  • Location: Canada, Mexico, and the United States 
  • Application deadline: January 18, 2024 

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Flood Hazard Identification and Mapping Program: Indigenous Traditional Knowledge Stream 

Funding to increase the uptake, validity, and relevance of flood hazard mapping in Indigenous communities, as well as to facilitate the exchange of knowledge between Indigenous and scientific practices related to flood mapping. The contribution fund will support the development of tools to support communities, traditional knowledge studies, and rights-based engagement processes. 

  • Grant range: FHIMP will fund up to two projects per year, providing a maximum of $125,000 per fiscal year, per project. 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: February 28, 2024 

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Government of Canada  

Several funding programs are available, depending on project focus, region, and timing.   

SEARCH HERE > 

Indigenous Habitat Participation Program 

The Restoration Priorities Plan for Pacific Region will establish priorities for fish habitat restoration throughout Pacific Region. It is intended to enhance restoration planning and coordination for aquatic restoration resources among the restoration community. The Restoration Priorities Plan will support decision-making and funding opportunities and will serve as a guide to prioritize localized habitat restoration needs. 

  • Grant range: one community: $10,000; two to 10 communities: $30,000; 11 to 30 communities: $45,000.  
  • Location: British Columbia and Yukon Territory  
  • Application deadline: January 31, 2024 

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McConnell Foundation: Climate, Reconciliation, Community 

Funding is available to support programs and activities that enhance climate, reconciliation, and community. 

  • Grant range: Modest partnership: $200,000 to $300,000, Medium partnership: $500,000 to $600,000, Larger partnership: $800,000+ 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: Ongoing 

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National Aboriginal Lands Managers Association (NALMA): Land Use Plans 

Funding is available to assist in the development of Indigenous land use plans. NALMA may also provide First Nation communities with technical support and training throughout the planning process, as needed. 

  • Grant range: $25,000; $75,000, $175,000 (depending on category and length) 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: February 2, 2024 

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Province of BC – Climate Funding Finder Tool  

Use the Funder Finder Tool to find information on close to 100 programs from a variety of funding organizations.  

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Real Estate Foundation of BC: General Grants 

The Real Estate Foundation of BC makes grants to support projects that advance sustainability, equity, and social justice in relation to land use and real estate practices in BC. 

  • Grant range: N/A 
  • Location: British Columbia 
  • Application deadline: February 7, 2024 

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Union of BC Municipalities: CEPF – Disaster Risk Reduction – Climate Adaptation 

Funding is available to support eligible applicants reduce risks from future disasters due to natural hazards and climate-related risks. 

  • Grant range: Category 1 (Foundational Activities): $150,000; Category 2 (Non-Structural Activities): $150,000; Category 3 (Small Scale Structural Activities): $2 million.  
  • Location: British Columbia  
  • Application deadline: March 28, 2024 

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WWF: Canada’s IPCA Support Fund 

Funding is available to support First Nation, Inuit, and Métis communities and organizations as they consider, establish, or maintain IPCAs in Canada. 

  • Grant range: $50,000 to $150,000 per year for up to three years 
  • Location: Canada-wide 
  • Application deadline: February 1, 2024 

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Health and Well-Being 

Union of BC Municipalities: CEPF – Emergency Support Services Equipment and Training 

Funding helps build local capacity to provide emergency support services through volunteer recruitment, retention, and training, including in-house training, and the purchase of emergency support services equipment. 

  • Grant range: $25,000 
  • Location: British Columbia  
  • Application deadline: January 26, 2024 

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Union of BC Municipalities: CEPF – Emergency Operations Centres and Training 

The intent of this funding stream is to support eligible applicants to build local capacity through the purchase of equipment and supplies required to maintain or improve an EOC and to enhance EOC capacity through training and exercises.    

  • Grant range: $30,000 
  • Location: British Columbia  
  • Application deadline: February 23, 2024  

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Union of BC Municipalities: CEPF – Indigenous Cultural Safety and Cultural Humility Program 

This funding program is available to provide Indigenous communities support in establishing cultural safety and cultural humility.  

  • Grant range: $30,000 
  • Location: British Columbia 
  • Application deadline: November 1, 2024  

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Indigenous Youth, Scholarships, and Bursaries 

BC First Nations Forestry Council: Indigenous Forestry Scholarship Program  

Funding is available for First Nations, Inuit, or Métis students interested in enrolling in full-time postsecondary program related to: forestry technician, natural resources, environmental technology, business management, business administration, geographic information systems, and forestry trades. The program also offers work placements and one-on-one mentorship with industry partners.   

  • Grant range: Covers living expenses while students complete their full-time studies. 
  • Location: British Columbia  
  • Application deadline: March 2024 

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Need Help Writing Grant Applications? 

Northern Development Initiative Trust: Grant Writing Support 

This program provides annual funding to support a grant writing position in a local government or First Nation. The grant writer supports communities by preparing funding applications to agencies, foundations, and government programs in order to access more funding dollars to support economic development projects and initiatives. 

  • Grant range: Up to $8,000 
  • Location: Northern British Columbia (see eligibility) 
  • Application deadline:January 31, 2024 

LEARN MORE > 

 


Know about a funding opportunity that isn’t on this list? Let us know at info@coastfunds.ca.