Each year we open up our funding process to eligible, charitable organizations across the region. Our application is designed to drill down to the core issues in each of our Focus Areas – getting to the heart of the issue and creating real impact for real people in our communities. Our funding process opens annually in the spring, applications are reviewed by staff over the summer and in the fall our Community Investment Committee begins their evaluations. Applicants are notified in November and our funding for approved agencies begins in January.
We have three funding streams –
Strengthening our Community Fund
The majority of applications fall into this category. Applicants under this category have programs with outcomes that relate to our United Way focus areas and can clearly show the impact that their organization will have. The programs are aligned with the organization’s mission and mandate and the organization has the necessary resources, expertise, and processes to implement and evaluate the work. Applications can focus on a specific program or an agencies core community work.
Community Innovation Fund
What do we mean by “innovation”?: changing the way we work, our habits, our behaviours, our daily practices. It is the creation of better, more effective products, processes, services, technologies or ideas that would free community resources to increase the resiliency of our region. Organizations applying to this fund are newly formed, or in the process of forming and are seeking to respond to a particular issue. The organization may know that something needs to happen, but wants to explore the “why” and the “how”. It could also mean that changing landscape has rendered the organization’s traditional approaches ineffective and, consequently, there is a need for the organization to explore alternatives. One big idea at a time! This fund isn’t designed to take approaches from other regions or organizations and simply apply them in our region – it’s meant to identify new ideas! This is a 1 year, one time only, grant and agencies who receive this funding may consider applying to the Strengthening our Community Fund in subsequent years.
Strategic Community Partnership Fund
Initiatives funded by the Strategic Community Partnership fund will apply a collective impact approach to advance community change strategies. An organization may consider this fund if the initiative requires a strategic commitment and the United Way will be an active partner. Initiatives could be led by a community organization, a collaboration of organizations, or on occasion, the United Way itself. This fund offers up to three year funding agreements with the flexibility to expand based on the situation and outcomes. These initiatives involve multiple partners who have a common agenda and shared reporting responsibilities. These funding opportunities will be focused specifically on community change/systems change.
Please make sure you read through our full eligibility criteria to make sure your application fits. From there, if you have never applied before please contact us to get started on the application platform.
If you have already have a profile with our online application platform, you can simply log in and click to request an application. Keep in mind that applications are only available when the funding process is open (spring 2018) and forms will be assigned within 2 business days of their request.
It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that they meet the eligibility criteria, that they understand the funding application and have the proper documentation in place. That being said, we want to make sure that each applicant puts their best foot forward! For both new and returning applications, please make sure that you’ve read through our resource section at the bottom of this page and if you have questions or want to get some insight, please contact us to discuss your application! As we go through each one, we may have questions and will reach out to the contact on the application. Our process timeline can be quite tight, and we ask that agencies respond in a timely manner.