First Nations and municipalities all across Canada have access to numerous funding resources — at both the provincial and the national level— when it comes to getting support for their economic development projects.

In order to keep our list current, we invite you to contact us directly if you have information on or suggestions for other relevant funding opportunities to add to our growing list.

Please let us know if your community is able to take advantage of funding from this list, as we would like to follow the success of all joint economic development projects across the country.

Indigenous communities may also be eligible for funding from FCM through the Municipal Asset Management Fund, Municipalities for Climate Innovation, and the Green Municipal Fund. For more information contact an FCM funding advisor.

Select your province or region to learn what resources are available specifically for your project and jurisdiction.

Atlantic

Aboriginal Community Development Fund

Supports community-led initiatives with economic outcomes and benefits for Nova Scotia Mi'kmaq and other Aboriginal people through a variety of business, cultural, social, ecological and economic development activities.

Organization:

  • Government of Nova Scotia — Office of Aboriginal Affairs

Who can apply:

  • First Nations

Innovative Communities Fund

Provides non-repayable funds and the appropriate tools to support communities in the Atlantic region in achieving sustainable economic growth.   

Organization:

  • Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency   

Who can apply?

  • First Nations Municipalities

JEDI Aboriginal Development Fund

Provides financial support for community economic development initiatives and business/entrepreneurship development initiatives in New Brunswick.

Organization:

  • Joint Economic Development Initiative

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Community Capacity Fund

Not-for-profit organizations working on rural development initiatives can apply to receive up to $10,000 in funding for consulting and professional services that support advanced planning and/or strategic capabilities.

Organization:

  • Central Development Corporation

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Quebec

Aboriginal Initiatives Fund III

The goal of this funding program is to encourage and support Aboriginal social, economic and community development. There are three relevant programs offered under this funding: Economic development, loan guarantees and community infrastructures.

Organization:

  • Gouvernement du Québec — Secrétariat aux affaires autochtones

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Aboriginal Projects

This program seeks to compliment other funding that Aboriginal communities receive to carry out specific, one-time initiatives that help to establish harmonious relationships between First Nation communities, the province, and/or the public. Projects that focus on fostering the social, community and cultural development of Québec's Aboriginal peoples are encouraged.

Organization:

  • Gouvernement du Québec — Secrétariat aux affaires autochtones

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Ontario

Aboriginal Economic Development Fund

The fund helps promote economic development and improve socio-economic outcomes for Aboriginal people through grants and financing for Aboriginal businesses, communities and organizations. Contains 3 different streams.

Organization:

  • Government of Ontario

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

New Relationship Fund

Two types of funding are available:

  • Core consultation capacity funding: helps First Nations and Métis communities consult and engage with governments and the private sector on land and resource matters.
  • Enhanced capacity building funding: supports projects that build the capacity of First Nations, Métis communities and Aboriginal organizations to work with government and participate in economic development activities.

Organization:

  • Government of Ontario

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Northern Community Capacity Building Program — Community Capacity Building Initiatives

The Community Capacity-Building Program helps northern communities develop the capacity to promote, attract, and support economic growth in the existing and emerging priority economic sectors.

Organization:

  • Government of Ontario — Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Northern Ontario Development Program (NODP) – Community Economic Development

Assistance available from FedNor includes repayable and non-repayable contributions in activity fields related to community economic development, including those that leverage key economic sectors, such as: mining and forest industries, tourism, agri-food, information and communications technology, renewable energy and manufacturing.               

Organization:

  • Government of Canada — FedNor

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Economic Development Initiative (EDI)

The EDI is an incremental programming initiative that supports economic development activities and approaches that respond directly to related priorities of OLMCs and/or that address linguistic duality issues. Eligible activities include incremental business and economic development activities such as those:

  • undertaken in French by, or for the benefit of, a Francophone client group;
  • that encourage SMEs to provide their products or services in both official languages (e.g., to expand into

Organization:

  • FedNor

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Funding for Indigenous Economic Development

This program provides grants for economic capacity-building projects in Indigenous communities and organizations, business financing for promising community projects as well as Aboriginal-owned businesses, funding for business support services delivered by Aboriginal Financial Institutions.

Organization:

  • Government of Ontario

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Eastern Ontario Development Fund

The Eastern Ontario Economic Development Fund is designed to help businesses create new jobs, and invest in new technologies, equipment or skills training for workers. It will also support economic development projects that will attract or retain investment in Ontario-based industries and communities.

Organization:

  • Government of Ontario

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

 

Manitoba

First People's Economic Growth Fund

A funding program that considers non-repayable contributions to First Nation clients for eligible capital and operating costs to start, expand or acquire a viable business.

Organization:

  • First People's Fund

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Business Plan Assistance

This Program is intended to assist Manitoba First Nation community-owned businesses for startup, expansions or acquisitions. The intent is that these viable businesses will provide for the creation of wealth and jobs for First Nations.

Organization:

  • First People Economy Growth Fund

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

 

Saskatchewan

SIEF Contribution Program

A needs-based program with a mandate to create jobs and to increase the economic well-being of First Nations people. The program is designed to support: business start-ups, business acquisitions or expansions to existing businesses.

Organization:

  • Saskatchewan Indian Equity Fund

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Northern Capital Grants Program

The Northern Capital Grants Program provides northern municipalities and settlements with financial assistance to build or purchase municipal infrastructure and capital assets.

Organization:

  • Government of Saskatchewan

Who can apply?

  • Municipalities

 

Alberta

Aboriginal Business Investment Fund

Provides funding to capitalize community-owned business development opportunities. The grants offer direct investment into eligible Indigenous community-owned businesses for capital projects.

Organization:

  • Government of Alberta — Ministry of Indigenous Relations

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Aboriginal Economic Partnership Program

This program grants funding to support Indigenous communities, businesses and organizations to promote and foster economic development. Funding can be used for a variety of purposes, including hosting economic development workshops, developing feasibility studies and business plans.

Organization:

  • Government of Alberta — Ministry of Indigenous Relations

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

First Nation Development Fund Grant Program

The FNDF gives funding for social, economic and community development projects.

Organization:   

  • Government of Alberta — Indigenous Relations

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Indigenous Climate Leadership

The objectives of the Climate Leadership Plan are to:

  • bend the curve of Alberta's emissions and allow us to stabilize and begin to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • position Alberta as one of the world's most progressive and environmentally responsible energy producers
  • reinvest revenue generated under the plan back into the economy to create jobs and to promote economic diversification - green jobs, green energy, green infrastructure
  •  provide supports such as rebates for those affected by the transition to a low-carbon economy

Organization:

  • Government of Alberta

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Community Regional Economic Support Program

This program is a matching Alberta Economic Development and Trade grant program that can be used to support foundational pieces related to regional economic development (such as a joint feasibility study, or business plan).

Organization:

  • Government of Alberta

Who can apply?

  • Open to both First Nations and municipalities, or a partnership

Alberta Community Partnership (ACP) 

The objective of the ACP program is to improve the viability and long-term sustainability of municipalities by providing support for regional collaboration and capacity-building initiatives. The ACP program is designed to support municipalities in attaining the following key program outcomes: new or enhanced regional municipal services; improved municipal capacity to respond to municipal and regional priorities; and effective intermunicipal relations through joint and collaborative activities. All municipalities in Alberta (i.e., cities, towns, villages, summer villages, municipal districts, specialized municipalities, improvement districts, and special areas), Métis Settlements and the Townsite of Redwood Meadows Administration Society are eligible to apply for funding under ACP.

Organization:

  • Government of Alberta

Who can apply?

  • Municipalities

Enhanced Capacity Advancement Program (ECAP)

The Enhanced Capacity Advancement Program (ECAP) helps to advance and strengthen the non-profit/voluntary sector. Provides multi-year operational funding for up to 3 years to Alberta-based non-profit organizations that have a primary mandate and proven ability to build the capacity of other non-profit organizations in Alberta strengthen and advance the capacity of Alberta's non-profit/voluntary sector as a whole build capacity for effective volunteerism in the broader community.

Organization:

  • Government of Alberta

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

First Nations Consultation Capacity Investment Program (FNCCIP)

The purpose of Indigenous Relations' (IR) First Nations Consultation Capacity Investment Program is to assist with building the capacity of First Nations in Alberta to participate in the consultation process.

Organization:

  • Government of Alberta

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Municipal Sustainability Initiative

The Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI) helps support local infrastructure priorities and build strong, safe and resilient communities. Municipal Affairs has allocated almost $9.6 billion to municipalities since the program launched in 2007. This has meant communities across Alberta have been able to build and rehabilitate their roadways and bridges, water and wastewater systems, public transit facilities, and recreation and sport facilities, and address other key local priorities.

Organization:

  • Government of Alberta

Who can apply?

  • Municipalities

 

British Columbia

Direct Support

Direct Support funding helps First Nation communities build capacity in the areas that they need it most.              

Organization:

  • New Relationship Trust

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Community to Community Forum

The funding is available for First Nations and municipalities to hold forum events intended to provide a time and place for dialogue to build on opportunities, resolve issues of common responsibility or interest, or to advance tangible outcomes.

Organization:

  • Union of British Columbia Municipalities/First Nations Summit

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

First Citizens Fund

To support cultural, educational and economic development in Aboriginal communities in British Columbia.

Organization:

  • Government of British Columbia

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Nechako-Kitamaat Development Fund

The fund is intended to support communities in North West British Columbia to create sustainable economic and stability projects in the region that is affected by the Kemano project and the creation of the Nechako Reservoir.

Organization:

  • Nechako-Kitamaat Development Fund Society

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Economic Development Capacity Building

To enhance the economic development capacity of local governments. A portion of the fund must be spent in collaboration with a First Nation band, neighbouring local government or a tourism/industry association.

Organization:

  • Northern Development Initiative Trust

Who can apply?

  • Municipality

Economic Diversification Infrastructure

This program provides funding to support to development of infrastructure that has a direct impact on the diversification of the economy.

Organization:

  • Northern Development Initiative Trust

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust

To support long term strategic investments that will benefit the development of the Southern Interior of British Columbia.

Organization:

  • Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Economic Development Readiness Program

Intended to support economic readiness and collaboration in the region and encourage collaboration between communities in the creation of regional economic strategies and other regional economic development tools.

Organization:

  • Island Coastal Economic Trust    

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

BC Rural Dividend

Funding is offered to rural communities, with a population under 25,000 in British Columbia to provide opportunities to diversify their economies and to enhance social, cultural and economic activities.

Organization:

  • Government of British Columbia

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Western Innovation (WINN) Initiative

The Western Innovation (WINN) Initiative is a five-year federal initiative that offers repayable contributions for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with operations in Western Canada, in order to help move their new and innovative technologies from the later stages of research and development to the marketplace.

Organization:

Western Economic Diversification Canada

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Coast Opportunity Funds-Economic Development Fund

Obtain funding for your sustainable business or economic development activities if you are a Participating First Nation (or individual member of one) on the BC coast.  

Organization:

  • Coast Funds

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

 

Territories

Community Economic Development (SEED)

Encourages economic initiatives in communities for planning, development of infrastructure, development of business information and community events that promote economic development.

Organization:

Government of Northwest Territories — Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Community Capacity Building Program 

Promotes economic development within the hamlets of the territory.

Organization:

  • Government of Nunavut — Department of Economic Development and Transportation

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Community Tourism and Cultural Industries Program

Provides funds to enhance infrastructure available for tourism and arts tourism related sectors for the overall economic development of the territory.

Organization:

  • Government of Nunavut — Department of Economic Development and Transportation

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Strategic Investments Program

Covers the costs of strategic, sustainable business expansion efforts that invest in Nunavut's economic foundation.

Organization:

  • Government of Nunavut — Department of Economic Development and Transportation

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Community Development Fund  

Provides funding to projects that will contribute long term benefits for the Yukon economy.

Organization:

  • Government of Yukon

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Regional Economic Development Fund

Promotes organizational capacity development and facilitate regional economic development.

Organization:

  • Government of Yukon

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

Community Readiness and Opportunity Program (CROP)

Improves the economic development capacity of Aboriginal communities in the three territories.

Organization:

  • Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (All Territories)

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Entrepreneurship and Business Development Program (EBD)

Provides financial support to entrepreneurs to expand their business in the three territories.

Organization:

  • Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (All territories)

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Strategic Investments in Northern Economic Development (SINED)

Strengthens the driving sectors of the economy in the territories, economic diversification, and encourage the participation of Northerners in the economy.

Organization:

  • Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (All territories)

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
  • Municipalities

 

Federal and national level

Lands and Economic Development Services Program (LEDSP) - Targeted Stream

Allows First Nation and Inuit communities to enhance their capacity to, carry out community economic development planning and capacity development initiatives, develop proposals and lever financial resources and pursue economic opportunities.

Organization:

  • Government of Canada – INAC

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Community Opportunity Readiness Program (CORP)

The long-term objective of CORP is for First Nation and Inuit communities to implement economic and business development opportunities, while leveraging private sector funding and opportunities.

Organization:

  • Government of Canada — INAC

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Aboriginal Financial Institutions (AFIs)

Aboriginal-owned and controlled financial institutions not regulated as financial institutions by provincial or federal regulatory agencies that provide developmental lending and business support to Aboriginal businesses.

Organization:

  • Government of Canada — INAC

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Procurement Strategy for Aboriginal Business (PSAB)

Helps eligible Aboriginal businesses enhance their business capacity by: competing for federal government contracts; establishing partnerships and marketing products (goods, services, construction); demonstrating their capabilities; and entering into supply chains.

Organization:

  • Government of Canada — INAC

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

First Nation Commercial and Industrial Development Act (FNCIDA)

Provides a mechanism by which a First Nation can request that the Government of Canada develop regulations for a specific commercial or industrial development on reserve.

Organization:

  • Government of Canada — INAC

Who can apply?

  • First Nations

Invest Canada - Community Initiatives

The Invest Canada - Community Initiatives (ICCI) program provides financial support to communities for their foreign direct investment (FDI) initiatives and activities.

Organization:

  • Government of Canada - Canadian Trade Commissioner Service

Who can apply?

  • Canadian communities and non-profit, locally-based organizations     

Capital for Aboriginal Prosperity and Entrepreneurship - CAPE

CAPE Fund intends to invest in diverse industries and regions, always with a view to fulfilling its mission of promoting entrepreneurial values among Aboriginal people through the funding and development of successful businesses located on or off reserve, where such projects can serve as fundamental examples of the benefits of entrepreneurial activities.            

Organization:

  • CAPE

Who can apply?

  • Mid-market opportunities with a strong degree of Aboriginal involvement and connection to Aboriginal communities throughout Canada

Smart Cities Challenge

The Smart Cities Challenge is a competition open to all municipalities, local or regional governments, and Indigenous communities (First Nations, Inuit, and Métis) across Canada.

This Challenge will inspire communities across the country to define their future with the help of their residents through the use of a smart cities approach. Winning communities will be awarded with prize money to help implement their smart cities proposals. Applicants have until April 24, 2018 to complete and submit their applications on the Impact Canada Challenge Platform.           

Organization:

  • Infrastructure Canada

Who can apply?

  • Municipalities, local or regional governments, and Indigenous communities (First Nations, Inuit, and Métis) across Canada.

Aboriginal Business & Entrepreneurship Development (ABED)

ABED works with Aboriginal entrepreneurs and its partners to provide a range of services and supports that promote the growth of a strong Aboriginal business sector in Canada. Support will vary depending upon the needs of the client, the availability and sources of funding, the eligibility of costs, the economic benefits, and the project viability. ABED can help Aboriginal entrepreneurs, communities and organizations to achieve their business goals.

Organization:

  • Aboriginal Financial Institutions

Who can apply?

  • First Nations
2019 Federation of Canadian Municipalities