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Building Communities through Arts and Heritage - Local Festivals

Grants to Canada Nonprofits and Aboriginal
Agencies to Present Artists' Work at Festivals

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Government of Canada - Canadian Heritage

Deadline Date:

09/30/19 5:00 PM Eastern Time


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Grants to Canada nonprofit organizations, tribal councils, and other Aboriginal government agencies to present the work of area artists and performers at regularly scheduled events that are primarily focused on the performing and visual arts and/or heritage activities.

The expected results of the program are as follows:

  • Citizens have the opportunity to get involved in their community through the arts and heritage;
  • Partners within the local community support the festivals and local commemorative projects;
  • Citizens have access to arts and local heritage; and
  • Artists, artisans, heritage performers or specialists and cultural carriers have the opportunity to get involved in the community.

To be eligible for funding from the Local Festivals component, your project must:

  • Offer arts and heritage programming;
  • Present local performing artists, cultural carriers, the work of local creators, or aspects of local heritage as a primary component;
  • Encourage community involvement by integrating volunteers into the project planning or delivery and give local artists,artisans and cultural carriers the opportunity to interact with the community;
  • Be designed for the general public;
  • Be easily accessed and appropriately promoted;
  • Benefit from support in cash and in-kind from local community partners;
  • Have a balanced budget (no surplus or deficit);
  • Benefit from tangible support from your city administration or equivalent authority (you must provide written confirmation of this support); and
  • Present eligible activities for more than 24 hours and less than 29 consecutive days.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 175189

Estimated Size of Grant:

Successful applicants may receive up to 100 per cent of eligible expenses up to a maximum of $200,000 for festivals.

Term of Contract:

For festivals starting between July 1 and August 31.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible applicants must represent one of the following community-based groups:
- A local non-profit organization or group;
- A local band council, local tribal council or other local Aboriginal government or organization (First Nations, Inuit or Métis).

In addition, applicants must:
- Encourage local community engagement through activities that promote, celebrate and preserve local performing and visual arts or local heritage; and
- Have successfully organized a prior edition of the festival, within the last two years, that met all eligibility requirements of this component.

The following groups or individuals are not eligible:
- Individuals;
- For-profit businesses;
- Municipal, provincial, federal or territorial governments and their agencies, councils or commissions;
- Educational institutions, including universities, colleges and school boards as well as public libraries and hospitals;
- Groups with a provincial/territorial, national or international mandate; and
- Unions.

The following activities are not eligible:
- Any events of a primarily religious, political or commercial nature (including food sales, art and craft sales, or book fairs);
- Sports or recreational activities;
- Activities whose primary purpose is fundraising or contest;
- Celebration of historical events of other countries;
- Celebrations of personalities of other countries;
- Activities taking place outside Canada;
- Activities that are (in whole or in part) an extension of regular or permanent programming of performances or exhibitions;
- Conferences, workshops and other events not intended for the general public; and
- Festivals that receive funding under the Canada Arts Presentation Fund, or one of the components of Canadian Heritage’s Celebration and Commemoration Program (such as Celebrate Canada); including events that celebrate Canada Day (July 1); National Indigenous Peoples Day (June 21); Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day (June 24); Canadian Multiculturalism Day (June 27); and other national holidays.

Pre-Application Information:

When an application deadline falls on a weekend or statutory holiday, it is extended to the following working day.
- January 31 – for festivals starting between September 1 and December 31
- April 30 – for festivals starting between January 1 and June 30
- September 30 – for festivals starting between July 1 and August 31

Application Guidelines:

Contact Information:

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

Create or access your Canadian Heritage account and apply online at:

Should you be unable to access the new online system or apply online for any reason, please contact the support team at:

Phone: 819-997-0055
Toll-Free: 1-866-811-0055
TTY: 1-888-997-3123 (toll-free)

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

Canada: Alberta   British Columbia   Manitoba   New Brunswick   Newfoundland and Labrador   Northwest Territories   Nova Scotia   Nunavut   Ontario   Prince Edward Island   Quebec   Saskatchewan   Yukon