Open call for applications for the Canada Healthy Communities Initiative


Ottawa, Ontario —As Canadians continue to adapt to the realities of COVID-19, local governments and community partners across the country are discovering new ways to keep residents safe and healthy, support economic recovery and build pandemic-resilient communities.

Today, the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, launched an open call to non-governmental not-for-profit organizations who will work directly with municipalities, local governments, Indigenous communities and not-for-profit community partners to identify and fund local projects through the Canada Healthy

Communities Initiative.

The Initiative, announced by Minister McKenna on August 13, 2020, is providing up to $31 million over the next two years to support community-led projects that respond to immediate and ongoing needs arising from COVID-19.

Recognizing the strengths and capacities of non-governmental not-for-profit organizations to work directly with communities in ways that add value beyond what Infrastructure Canada can do itself, the department is engaging the expertise of organizations that are already at work helping communities adapt to this pandemic. This approach ensures the initiative can be delivered quickly and cost-effectively while responding to the distinct needs of communities across the country. The selected organization(s) will make funding available for local applicants and encourage idea sharing so that communities can quickly put into place solutions that will improve the lives of residents.

The goal of the Canada Healthy Communities Initiative is to support projects that help communities of all sizes and compositions adapt to COVID-19 under three main themes: creating safe and vibrant public spaces, improving mobility options, and digital solutions.  Potential projects could include: supporting main street business associations to adapt seating arrangements, modifying recreational facilities to accommodate for physical distancing, building pop-up passage ways for bikes, scooters, and personal mobility devices to allow citizens to move around their communities safely, or developing apps or other digital tools to allow residents to access services remotely.

Organizations are encouraged to review the open Call for Applications and consult the Applicant Guide for full details on eligibility and how to apply. Organizations will have until October 16, 2020 to submit their applications.

A call for proposals for specific projects under the Healthy Communities Initiative will come at a later date.