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Seed Grants

Grants to Ontario Nonprofits, Municipalities, and
Tribes for New Community Benefit Initiatives

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Ontario Trillium Foundation

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

02/21/18 5:00 PM EST


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Grants ranging from $5,000 to $75,000 to Ontario nonprofit organizations, small municipalities, and Native communities and tribes for the development of new ideas to improve community connectedness and quality of life for residents. January 31, 2018 is the deadline to register an organization to apply.

Focus areas include active lifestyle, building inclusive and engaged communities, environmentally friendly practices, arts, culture, and heritage, supporting the positive development of children and youth, and economic stability and opportunity. Specifically, funding is intended for the development of new ideas and different approaches to achieving results in the above- mentioned areas. Projects must align with an OTF Priority Outcome, and broadly align with a Grant Result, as detailed in "Priority Outcomes, Grant Results and Metrics" PDF in Supporting Documents below.

The Seed Investment Stream supports projects that:

- Come up with new or better ways of doing things (more efficiently or effectively), leading to greater impact
- Develop an evidence base, through the testing or piloting of new or unproven approaches
- Allow an organization to learn as a result of testing ideas or concepts that have not been tried before
- Respond to emerging issues in a community
- Experiment with innovative approaches without knowing what the results might be
- Explore the feasibility of ideas or things that are new or unproven
- Through research, confirm, refine or refute a hypotheses

All projects need to drive at achieving greater impact in their community by:

- Researching a new concept, idea or approach
- Developing, launching or testing a new idea, approach or event
- Piloting a new program, running a demonstration project
- Conducting a feasibility study
- Convening around an emerging issue
- Other, compelling, transformation-oriented projects. Applicants selecting the “Other” category must clearly describe their project’s details.

All costs funded by OTF must be eligible and necessary to carry out the described project. Direct Project Costs may include:

- Direct personnel costs (new or maintained staff positions funded specifically for the project)
- Direct non-personnel costs: purchased services, workshop/meetings/convening, supplies, materials, and equipment required for the project, travel, evaluation, or others.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 174191

Estimated Size of Grant:

$5,000 - $75,000; 10% of the funding will be held back, to be paid upon satisfactory review of the final report.

Term of Contract:

Grant terms are up to one year.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

OTF considers any one of the following organizations eligible for funding:

- A charitable organization or foundation registered as a charity with the Canada Revenue Agency
- An organization incorporated as a nonprofit corporation without share capital in a Canadian jurisdiction
- A First Nation
- A Metis, Inuit or other Aboriginal community
- A municipality with a population of 20,000 or less, or their cultural and recreational agencies for initiatives in the Inspired or Active People action areas
- A collaboration of two or more organizations, where the lead organization is an eligible organization

In addition, an applying organization must:

- Provide services in Ontario
- Comply with all applicable legislation
- Show evidence of its ability to generate additional resources from the community and other sectors

Faith-based or religious organizations are eligible to apply for OTF grants so long as they comply with the Foundation’s Eligibility Policy. See FAQs page for more details.

OTF will not support the following entities:
1. Individuals
2. For-profit organizations
3. Organizations whose purpose is related to political activity as defined by the Canada Revenue Agency
4. (a) Agencies of provincial or federal governments*
​(b) Municipalities with populations over 20,000, and their agencies*
(c) Universities, colleges, schools and hospitals, and their agencies*
5, Private Foundations*
6. Organizations that discriminate or that seek to limit the legal rights and activities of people, as per OTF's Anti-Discrimination Policy

*Unless they are part of a collaboration of two or more organizations, where the lead organization is an eligible organization.

OTF will not support the following initiatives:

- Financing of deficits
- Purchase of Alcohol
- Political and/or advocacy activities, such as furthering the aims of a political party; promoting a political doctrine; or persuading the public to adopt a particular political view
- Religious activities, including capital renovations or repairs for facilities used for the specific purpose of religious observance
- Contributions to annual fund drives or capital campaigns
- Dollar-for-dollar replacement of government funding
- Programs or services outside Ontario
- Activities completed or costs incurred before the approval of the request to OTF
- Flow-through funding (i.e., funds that will be reallocated to a third party organization)
- Discriminatory Activities, as defined by the OTF Anti-Discrimination Policy and the Ontario - Human Rights Code

Types of costs/projects not funded:

- Requests to fund a previously/currently offered program or project
- Requests that do not broadly align with an OTF Grant Result and do not align with an OTF Priority Outcome
- Renovations, repairs, new buildings

Pre-Application Information:


Organization registration deadline: February 1, 2017, 5:00 PM ET
Application deadline: February 22, 2017, 5:00 PM ET.

Organization registration deadline: January 31, 2018, 5:00 PM ET
Application deadline: February 21, 2018, 5:00 PM ET

Application Deadlines:



How to apply:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

If your organization was awarded a grant in 2014 to today’s date, you need to use your current user ID and password in order to update your organizational profile:

If your organization was not awarded a grant in 2014, you need to register your organization online at:

Ontario Trillium Foundation
800 Bay Street, 5th Floor
Toronto, ON M5S 3A9

Telephone: 416.963.4927
TTY: 416.963.7905
Toll-free: 1.800.263.2887
Fax: 416.963.8781

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

Canada: Ontario