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Newcomer and Refugee Artist Mentorship

Grants to Ontario Artists in Eligible Regions
for Artistic Guidance and Career Development

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Toronto Arts Council (TAC)

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Grants of $10,000 to Ontario individual artists in eligible regions for artistic guidance in a range of disciplines. Applicants must contact program staff prior to applying. Funding is intended to provide career development assistance to artists who are new to the area. The goal of the program is to support the integration and inclusion of newcomer and refugee artists in Toronto, and to offer newcomer and refugee artists the opportunity to be mentored in their chosen arts discipline.

A newcomer is defined as an immigrant or refugee who has lived in Canada for less than 7 years; a refugee is a person who was forced to leave their home country and is now located in Canada. The mentorship application is submitted by the newcomer artist with the mentor as the co-applicant. Both the applicant and the mentor must identify as professional artists.

A professional artist is:

  • Someone who has developed their artistic skills through training and/or practice; 
  • Recognized as a professional by other artists working in the same artistic tradition; 
  • Actively practices his or her art;
  • Seeks payment for her/his work; and
  • Has a history of public presentation.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 185099

Estimated Size of Grant:

The total grant is $10,000.
- $5,000 is paid directly to the newcomer or refugee artist
- $5,000 is paid directly to the mentor.

Term of Contract:

Mentorships may not start before July 1, 2020. All mentorship activities must be completed by June 30, 2021.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligibility for Newcomer or Refugee Artist:
- You must be a professional artist (see definition on page 1)
- You must live in the City of Toronto
- You must have arrived in Canada after January 1, 2013
- You must be a Canadian Citizen, Permanent Resident, Approved Refugee Claimant (i.e. Protected Person) or have applications for permanent residency or citizenship pending.
- You must register as an individual artist in TAC Grants Online:
- To receive funding from the Toronto Arts Council you must have a Social Insurance Number.
- You may be asked to provide documents to confirm that you qualify for the funding. If you have any questions about your eligibility, please contact the Program Manager.

Undergraduate students are not eligible to apply to this program. Past recipients of the TAC Newcomer and Refugee Artist Mentorship grant are not eligible to apply. People who arrived in Canada before January 1, 2013 cannot apply to this program.

TAC recognizes that due to systemic barriers within the broader arts community (e.g. limited mainstream presentation opportunities for artists from equity-seeking communities) that some flexibility may be required in interpreting eligibility criteria to take into account equivalent professional experience and contexts. Potential applicants from equity-seeking communities are encouraged to discuss their eligibility with the Program Manager in advance of submitting an application.

Eligibility: Mentor Artist
- You must be a professional artist (see definition on page 1)
- You must live in the City of Toronto
- You must be a Canadian Citizen, Permanent Resident, Approved Refugee Claimant (i.e. Protected Person) or have applications for permanent residency or citizenship pending.
- You must have been living in the City of Toronto for at least one year prior to the deadline and live and work in Toronto for at least 8 months a year as a professional artist or arts worker. A Post Office Box address cannot be used to meet the residency requirement.
- You can only be listed as a mentor on one application per grant round.
- The mentor must be registered as an individual artist in TAC Grants Online Mentors may not use an email address already in use as an organization or collective contact.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Individuals interested in applying for this program are invited to attend one of the following information sessions:

Information Session #1: January 15, 6:00-8:00 PM, St. Matthew's Clubhouse

Information Session #2: February 12, 6:00-8:00 PM, North York Civic Centre

Information Session #3: February 27, 2020. 11:00 AM-1:00 PM, Richview Public Library

Information Session # 4: March 10, 2020. 1:00-3:00 PM, Scarborough Public Library

Pre-Application Information:

Applicants are required to register on TAC Grants Online and submit the application no later than 11:59 pm on May 4, 2020. Programs are open to receive applications two to three months before the submission deadline.

Applicants are required to speak to Rupal Shah, Strategic Programs Manager before submitting an application. Please contact Rupal to schedule an appointment to discuss your proposal.

Support material is important to the assessment process. All applicants are required to submit examples of their recent artistic work that are relevant to the mentorship. At least one example should be from the past two years. Support material from mentors is optional, but encouraged.

Notification will be received within three months of the deadline date.

Applicants who are deaf or have a disability and need support to complete their grant applications can apply for funds to cover the costs of assistance from Application Support Service Providers. Up to $500 is available per eligible applicant in each calendar year. Please contact your Grant Program Manager at least six weeks before the grant program deadline to determine eligibility, request application support funding, and to review the process for payment to be made to your Service Provider.

Application information:

Tips for first-time users:

Contact Information:

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

Apply online:

Rupal Shah, Strateic Programs Manager
416-392-6802 x 209

Toronto Arts Council
200-26 Grand Trunk Crescent
Toronto, Ontario M5J 3A9

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Geographic Focus:

Canada: Ontario

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