Emergency Community Support Fund FAQ

How well did the Emergency Community Support Fund work for community organizations in the first round?

The Canadian Red Cross, Community Foundations of Canada and United Way Centraide Canada funded more than 7,000 projects over about three months during the Fund’s first round. Those projects spanned the country and met the needs of many different communities, including Black, Indigenous, and LGBTQ2 communities.

Why is the Emergency Community Support Fund opening a second round when many organizations applied and were rejected for lack of funds in the first round?

The Government of Canada kept back a portion of the Emergency Community Support Fund to give it the flexibility to adjust to evolving needs and cover any gaps from the first round.

In the first round of grant funding, the three intermediaries were able to reach all vulnerable groups through funding distributed to all provinces and territories. Building on the success of the first round, the three intermediaries will distribute the remaining funds of $73.9 million through a second round of open and transparent processes, while also using a targeted approach in their outreach efforts to ensure equitable distribution across vulnerable populations.

Why should I donate to United Way Centraide when you are receiving large grants from the Government of Canada?

The Emergency Community Support Fund is only providing short term grants to community serving agencies and must be spent by March 31, 2020. The funds raised by United Way Centraide are intended to provide longer term sustainable funding to our network of community agencies.

How much money is available through the Emergency Community Support Fund? Is it possible to find out how much is available for our region?

Emergency Community Support Fund is a $350 million investment made by the Government of Canada, and a significant portion is being delivered through United Way Centraide Canada, Community Foundations of Canada and Canadian Red Cross across the country. United Ways and Centraides will be administering this grant in local communities. Please reach out to your local United Way Centraide for additional information.

How do I find my local United Way Centraide and apply?

To find the local United Way Centraide in your community and their Emergency Community Support Fund application information you can use the link below. This will give you general information about the fund and link you to a map where you can search by postal code and click through to your local United Way Centraide website application page:

EN: unitedway.ca/ecsf/

FR: centraide.ca/fuac/

How are local United Way Centraides handling applications in terms of both official languages?

Some United Way Centraides operate on a bilingual basis in communities with large Francophone or Anglophone population bases. If the local United Way Centraide generally operates on a unilingual basis, applicants can still apply in either official language. Applicants will be provided with an email address on the local United Way Centraide website to ask questions or start the application process.  United Way Centraide Canada has provided all Emergency Community Support Fund tools in both official languages and will support the local agency application process in either official language.

If we have received other federal and/or provincial or territorial Covid-19 related funding, can we still apply to the Emergency Community Support Fund?

Yes, funding from the Emergency Community Support Fund can be used to enhance and expand your current COVID-19 funded community service so long as expenses are not counted twice. Please reach out to your local United Way Centraide for additional information.

What if we are not currently a United Way Centraide funded agency, can we still apply to the Emergency Community Support Fund?

You do not need to be a current funded agency to apply. We are committed to ensuring that funds are broadly available to community service organizations and agencies working to provide services and support vulnerable populations impacted by COVID-19. In Round 1, 52% of funding was disbursed to new UWC partners.

Which kinds of community service organizations are eligible to apply to United Way Centraide Canada’s funding stream for the Emergency Community Support Fund?

Organizations providing front-line services to vulnerable populations impacted by COVID-19 are eligible to apply, including registered charities, and other qualified donees as identified by local United Way Centraides. Check the Canada Revenue Agency list of qualified donees by clicking here.

We are a non-profit organization; how can we access and partner with United Way Centraides to provide support to vulnerable communities?

Non-profit organizations in Canada are playing an important role in helping to respond to local needs. Please reach out to your local United Way Centraide to understand if they will be funding non-profits. In some cases, non-profit community organizations delivering front-line services may be supported through a qualified donee that is acting as a trustee or in some circumstances under an agent agreement.

Will you fund activities or services that meet the criteria but are already underway?

If activities or services are underway, you can apply for additional resources to expand and/or extend the delivery of service for a longer time (up to March 31, 2021).

If my agency is receiving the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, are we still eligible to apply for funding?

Yes. Emergency Community Support Fund distributions cannot fund any expenses (including wages) already covered by another source, but can complement existing sources, including the wage subsidy.

How many funding requests can be made by one organization?

United Way Centraides will be administering this grant in local communities. Please reach out to your local United Way Centraide for additional information.

How will decisions about the funding be made? How quickly can we anticipate a decision?

All funding allocations will be made public by late November. Please reach out to your local United Way Centraide for additional information regarding their application process timelines.

The front-line services we are delivering are at risk of closing without new funding. Are we able to apply for funding under this program?

The purpose of the ECSF is to resource front-line services supporting vulnerable populations impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Eligible expenses include staffing, equipment, supplies, and related operating costs that allow organizations to provide and deliver services that respond to the current crisis.

May we apply to United Way Centraides, Community Foundations and Canadian Red Cross?

Yes. Applicants may not, however, apply to more than one funder for the same program activities and related costs. The three intermediaries will be coordinating locally to ensure that funds are being distributed to have the best possible local reach to serve vulnerable populations.

What are the reporting requirements?

The reporting requirements for this funding will focus primarily on number of services and clients served, and organizations will be expected to periodically provide updates to these numbers throughout the period of the grant. Additional details will be shared with successful applicants.

How will United Way Centraides ensure that this funding is reaching the most vulnerable communities? Is there a commitment to access and equity for these resources?

United Ways and Centraides are committed to ensuring an open and fair application and review process. They will be working to promote this funding opportunity throughout our community and to support organizations seeking to apply. Consideration for a number of equity dimensions will guide decisions on how these resources will be allocated locally. Please reach out to your local United Way Centraide for additional information.

We’re part of a national organization network, but we are governed locally. Should we look to apply to our local United Way Centraide for Emergency Community Support Fund funding or should our national office coordinate our applications?

No. For national networks or federations, each local member or chapter must submit its own application directly to their local United Way or Centraide.in the area where the activities take place.

Can a national or provincial organization apply to support its own services to vulnerable people?

Yes. For ECSF Round 2, national or provincial charities that deliver services to vulnerable people can apply to Community Foundations of Canada. National or provincial non-profits that deliver services to vulnerable people can apply to the Canadian Red Cross.

Will you give cash transfers to groups who are ineligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit and other income supports?

This funding is for front-line community services for COVID-19 relief. The funding cannot be used to provide income replacement for individuals. Agencies that meet our eligibility criteria and are providing services and supports to individuals who need income supports, such as undocumented people or sex workers, can certainly apply for funding to serve these communities through eligible activities related to food security, mental health support, etc.