Search or browse below to see past Field of Interest grants. You may search by recipient organization name, project name, or city. Additionally, in the sidebar you may filter the grants displayed by year, interest or grant amount.

3H Craftworks Society

Sewing and Socializing: Skills Development for Sustainability (hereafter SDS)

Driven by market changes, Craftworks has recently evolved from a business model reliant on retail sales to a more sustainable contract services business model. In order for the new model to supplement our program, SDS was developed to address an identified need for broader skills development, increased earnings, and socialization. SDS will expand participants' capacity through skills workshops (e.g. industrial sewing, embroidery, beading) that are tailored to our participants' learning styles and skill level. Acquiring these new skills will allow participants to access additional in-house earnings opportunities, otherwise not afforded to them. SDS will also provide more frequent opportunities for socialization through a regular schedule of monthly workshops that are conducive to peer learning. SDS will increase Craftworks' capacity by improving our knowledge of training facilitation and add competitive skills that will enable us to market ourselves as a full-service provider.

Archway Community Services

The Bridge Canine Care Program

The idea for this project originated with Diane Benaroch wanting to open a doggie day care and employ people with developmental disabilities to work at the doggie day care. Diane was concerned about the training of the individuals and how that would work. Diane met with the staff from the EPIC program with Abbotsford Community Services in May of 2014 where it was decided that a training program should be developed first and foremost. Through this project, we are hoping to build a bridge between people with developmental disabilities, dog trainers, and dog owners. The participants in this project will learn how to care for and train dogs and through the interactions they have with people involved in the canine industry will build relationships and connections that will provide them with jobs, friends and mentors.

Beaufort Association for Mentally Handicapped

Pet Treat Bakery Expansion Project

Pet Treat Bakery, a social enterprise business operated by Beaufort Association, has experienced tremendous success in marketting and selling our products on Vancouver Island, and in providing employment for people with developmental disability, In four years, our annual sales have grown from $55000 to $125000 and we are projecting similar increases over the next three years. Our workforce has grown from four to eleven hourly employees at our dehydration facility, working from 2 to 22 hours per week, and paid minimum wage and better. In addition we have a flexible work crew of four to eight piece-work employees to do packaging and labelling. We are ready to take the next step, hiring a manager and increasing production capacity. This will require renovation to upgrade electrical service, improvements to water supply and plumbing, purchase of additional equipment and other upgrades. We estimate a 50% increase in production will create between 24 and 28 addtional hours of work per week. This will mean an increase in hours for some employees and the hiring of additional staff.

Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion

Kudos Prototyping Project

The Kudos Prototype Project will test and spread an informal learning & badging platform. Persons with a developmental disability will be matched to a pipeline of surprising learning experiences in the community, and receive credentials for their acquired know-how by means of a badging system (not unlike what is used in virtual games and social media). Experiences will be pulled together within multiple content streams around a passion (e.g hip-hop), a skill (e.g fixing things), a craft (e.g mechanics) or a discipline (e.g urban studies) - and provided by employers and community organizations via short taster sessions and mini projects. The platform will be co-created with persons with disabilities, their families, and local business owners. The idea for Kudos comes from 3-months of ethnographic work in a social housing complex in Burnaby. Whilst supported persons had access to day programmes and employment services, few activities widened and deepened interests, built bridging social networks, or leveraged those connections to shape meaningful, ongoing roles.

Campbell River & District Association

Scan Now

ScanNow will be offering a document scanning services. Where business can drop off documents to be scanned into electronic format, assured of confidentiality of all documents. The entire process is the customer drops of documents to be scanned into digital format(Computer Files). When the documents are scanned, the client would pick up the original documents and a DVD or USB with the scanned document files. Files would be made content searchable, organized in folders with matching equivalent paper folder directory names and file names. We are also able to offer an add-on service for Skyline Productions Shredding service, offering the client to scan documents to digital format before shredding. Skyline Productions has a large pool of established business clients which ScanNow could provide an attractive add on service.

Canadian Mental Health Association - Port Alberni Branch

Healthy Harvest

Healthy Harvest Market Garden began four years ago with the idea of providing gardening skills and healthy food in a therapeutic environment for people with mental health issues. People were provided with a small honorarium for 10 hours of work per month. Since that time we have been able to get a long term lease on acreage and a greenhouse owned by the Hupacasath First Nations. The local food movement has been growing throughout BC and great opportunities exist in Port Alberni of which this project can take advantage. There is a great demand for local produce from restaurants in the Tofino-Ucluelet area and Port Alberni is the closest farming community. The Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District has a 20 year Agricultural Plan to achieve 40% food self-sufficiency. The ARCD recently hired an Agricultural Support Worker. There are two Farmer's Markets in operation in Port Alberni. We have experimented with different crops and methods of sales and are now ready to move into full production with the idea of becoming a self-sustaining social enterprise.

Canadian National Institute for the Blind

Transition Peer Support Group for Young Adults in BC with Vision Loss

There is a lack of skills training and support for Canadians who are blind or partially sighted and the result is that 65 percent of working age adults with vision loss are unemployed and 50 percent earn less than $20,000 per year. CNIB's innovative Transition Peer Support Group for Young Adults in BC with Vision Loss will support young adults at this critical stage in their lives and prepare them with the skills and confidence they need to earn a living and maintain a job. Through interaction with others experiencing the same struggles and situations this pilot project will building acceptance of vision loss through the discovery of adaptive methods, accessibility options, independent living skills and practical skills such as interview techniques and resume writing. These groups will empower young adults with vision loss by arming them with essential tools and skills. Together, participants will explore and discuss topics related to education, transitioning into the working world, assistive technology to achieve independence, social interaction, family life and more.

CanAssist, University of Victoria

Addendum to "Apps for Employment" (DSF12-0037)

CanAssist had initially proposed developing apps on the Apple platform in our 2012 request, targeting release on the Apple App Store at the conclusion of the project so that they are available to people with disabilities on a wider scale. This decision was made as support apps for the disability community traditionally have been overwhelmingly written for Apple devices. Through consultation with the Employment Apps Advisory Committee (clients, their job coaches and service providers), we have learned that device use among the target population accessing supported employment services is now more in line with the general population, with Android representing the majority of users. In fact, due to the lower cost of Android-based devices, these devices are now common for individuals with disabilities that may be living on a fixed or lower income. In order to maximize the accessibility of the apps created from this initiative, CanAssist would like to develop them on both Android and Apple platforms (and by extension, easing future versions for Blackberry or Windows Phone devices).

Canucks Autism Network Society

"I CAN Volunteer" Program

The "I CAN Volunteer" program is designed to encourage participants' development of professional experience and employable skills, facilitating their transitions into the workforce. The program is designed to focus on problem solving, creative thinking, proficiency and leadership abilities. The program provides a series of workshops followed by a practical experience portion within our existing programs. The workshops are conducted with a view to progressive behavioural skills training, where the skills emphasized within each session build upon those developed in the preceding workshop. Each workshop is structured to facilitate skill development by breaking each lesson into individual components of instruction, modelling, testing, and constructive feedback. The practical experience portion grants participants the opportunity to internalize the skills emphasized within the workshops, and to gain practical work experience in a sports and recreation environment. Staff will work to tailor the program, both workshops and volunteer opportunities, to the specific needs of each participant.

Grendel Group (Family Advocates)

"Training For Growth"

Food security and healthy eating are of utmost concern for residents of the Bulkley Valley. Employers in the agricultural sector (local farms, garden markets, plant centres, etc) have expressed interest in hiring Grendel participants with well-developed horticulture skills. In order to accomplish this, the Grendel Group will hire a Support Worker to focus specifically on honing the participants' skills to meet the expressed needs of local employers in the agriculture sector, as well as developing communication, math and customer service skills. This worker will also be responsible for outreach with potential employers, job placements, and continued support of the participants. Of course, this project adheres to the Grendel Group's principles of providing opportunities for hands-on training, peer education, community integration, and programs based on quality produce and food preparation.

High Road Services Society

Innovations' Kitchen

Innovations' Kitchen is a social enterprise jointly managed by the Supported Employment Program and Special Projects program of HIGH ROAD Services Society. Innovations' Kitchen(IKitchen) operates five days a week in the cafeteria space of the local high school, providing nutritious snack and meal options prepared by the individuals employed part time by IKitchen. The individuals receive instruction and support in learning industry standard skills that can be transferable to other employment settings. Employers often do not have the time or resources to provide one on one continual training supports for individuals with disabilities. IKitchen removes this obstacle by providing on the job training in the areas desired by potential employers, while providing a fair wage for the individuals. Individuals are instructed in Food Safe and Health and Safety procedures while experiencing realistic employment expectations such as being on time for scheduled shifts, following an appropriate hygiene routine, working coherently with coworkers and completing tasks according to direction given.

John Howard Society of the Lower Mainland of B.C.

Community Living Skills Centre

The Community Living Skills Centre will provide individuals with developmental disabilities specialized employment training, supports, and workshops designed to build confidence, challenge attitudes, and support individuals transitioning into the workforce. The program will consist of a number of workshops and training programs, including facilitation of the Job Readiness program, a Job Club, employment support, and vocational job skills. By building work structure into the program and providing access to volunteers able to accompany individuals in work placements, participants will be assisted through the transition to working life and improve one's quality of life. Participants will: -Learn life and job skills necessary to obtain and retain employment -Build motivation and decision-making skills required to be successful in the workplace -Have the opportunity to recognize and understand the career path that they desire through the development of a customized work plan -Increase belonging and inclusion through the development of pro-social peer and community support

Kickstart Disability Arts and Culture

The Fine Line Project

The Fine Line Project is a series of cutting edge art events in the burgeoning field of disability arts. The theme for this series is a Fine Line, referring to the hazy boundaries in disability art, the line between therapy and art that heals; the line between individual production and art with assistance; the line between acoustic musicianship and technologically assisted music. Kickstart wants to take this opportunity to examine the particular boundaries disabled artists face. Through partnership with the Art House in the Field Collective and Vancouver Adapted Music Society, we are able to present readings, music, talks and workshops in an intimate accessible venue (Slocan Hall) that is a thriving neighbourhood centre for the arts. This project emerges from our multidisciplinary festival experience, and represents a change in delivery of programming, increasing our year-round visibility while maintaining our goal to present authentic non-sentimental expressions of the disability experience.

Kindale Developmental Association

Employment Readiness for Youth and Young Adults

Kindale's project will assist youth and young adults with developmental disabilities to gain the skills, habits, attitudes, and experiences necessary to become employed in real jobs in their local community. The program is individualized based on the development of a personal employment plan for each of the 20 participants, focused on their abilities, needs, and goals. It includes employment skills assessment, training, coaching, on-the-job support, and reinforcement of the learned skills and habits at home. The project also works with local businesses to provide job-specific training and employment opportunities for the participants. Program staff work with employers and their employees to allay fears, raise awareness, and foster relationship building. On-the-job support is provided as needed by the program participant, employer, or their employees. This direct linking of personal employment planning, employment readiness training, job specific skills coaching, and employer development makes this project different from, and closes gaps in, services for this population.

Kinsight Community Society

Youth Employment Initiative

Years 2 & 3 of a 3 year project with a long range goal to expand community capacity to successfully engage youth who have developmental disabilities in sustainable, paid employment. It is intended to increase employment opportunities and the overall rate of employment for youth aged 15 - 19 in the TriCities. With the initiative successfully underway with 10 students at Heritage Woods Secondary in Port Moody, it is our intent to expand the project to the communities of Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam in years 2 & 3. This will be accomplished through supports to bridge Secondary students from school work experience placements into paid part or full time employment and by expanding the pool of employment opportunities in the TriCities through the recruitment & education of potential employers. A cross-sectoral steering committee will continue to evaluate and guide progress, ongoing viability and strategies for project expansion and improved connections to the business community. The 2nd and 3rd years allow us to check back with previous schools/communities to ensure project sustainability.

Inclusion Langley Society

Youth Works

The initiative proposes to provide support to twenty secondary school students to secure part-time and after school employment. The supports will offer students in grades 10-12, including youth who are transitioning out of high school. The employment specialists, in collaboration with the school and family will engage in a discovery process in which students abilities will be observed in the students' work experience environment. This process will ascertain the students' abilities and potential employment choices to ensure a successful employment match. Once employment has been established, employment specialists will provide support to the employer and student with training, job coaching, continued support and monitoring to ensure the satisfaction of the employer and success of the employee. Securing part-time and after school employment is the most potent support we can offer students to ease the transition to adult life. Offering students the opportunity to have a robust resume & paid employment experience, provides them with a greater opportunity to obtain competitive employment.

Learning Disabilities Society of Greater Vancouver

Learning Employment and Education Program

The Leadership Employment and Education Program (LEEP) is a leadership and employment training program for youth (14-17) with Learning Disabilities. The program's goal is twofold: 1) to broaden each young person's understanding of their individual Learning Disability diagnosis and to enhance their skills as advocates of their needs in the workplace, 2) to provide each youth with employment training, and volunteer work placements that will prepare them for the workplace. Youth with Learning Disabilities face very specific challenges. The program is designed to help them explore these issues with others who experience the same battles, to build a sense of community with others, and to deepen their understanding and appreciation for their uniqueness. Youth will graduate from the LEEP program with a new sense of awareness of their strengths and weaknesses, newfound confidence in their abilities and unique talents, and a better ability to communicate their needs.

Neil Squire Society

Employ-Ability in West Kelowna

The Neil Squire Society will partner with First College in West Kelowna, to deliver our Employ-Ability program. It is a twelve week program for people with physical disabilities, and will be delivered online and supported with a local facilitator. The core modules of Employ-Ability are Career Development, and Wellness for Work. Graduates of the Employ-Ability program have an action plan for better health, a plan to enter the labour market, and a clear career goal. The financial support of the Vancouver Foundation will support the staffing costs and the rent for the classroom space to deliver the program. Over two years, this project will: - Launch the Employ-Ability program at First College; - Market the program to local service providers, agencies, people with disabilities and other local stakeholders; - Serve 40 people with disabilities over two years; - Assist at least 20 people to move onto employment or further education; - Establish a local Disability Services Committee to sustain programming based on community needs.

North Island College Foundation Trust Fund

Employment Transition Construction Labourer Program

The Construction Labourer Employment Transition (CL-ET) program is a unique and innovative program designed by North Island College to provide skills-based Post Secondary Education to learners who experience barriers to education and employment due the impact of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and brain injuries. The program offers a unique, hands-on, active-learning approach, combining employment skills, workplace essential skills, and carpentry skills. The program also offers valuable life supports through community mentors who provide one-on-one guidance and training to the students in a number of areas where the impact of their disability causes barriers or challenges e.g. budgeting, transportation, and food preparation. On completion of the program, persons with disabilities will acquire employment skills to help them maintain work and acquire entry level construction skills leading to employment opportunities as construction labourers or carpenter assistants. North Island College's Construction Labourer - Employment Transition program is the only program of its kind in BC.

Port Alberni Association for Community Living

Summer Work Experience Program (SWEP)

Our agency would like to pilot a Summer Work Experience Program (SWEP) for youth with special needs in the summer of 2015. This request is in response to the various provincial initiatives focusing on employment for persons with developmental disabilities and the need for transitional planning for youth with special needs. With relevance to this funding application, our agency currently offers an Employment Program that is extremely successful. However, we are only able to offer this service to our adult population at this point in time. One of the primary goals of this proposed project is to build that relationship with the youth and to support a seamless transition once they enter into adult services and programs; building familiarity with our staff and program would enhance their chances of gaining successful employment as an adult. The objectives of the SWEP would be to provide a positive and successful work experience for the youth through support, encouragement and on-the-job assistance so they will have the confidence to pursue employment as an adult..

Ridge Meadows Association for Community Living

Rotary at Work BC

Participating Rotary Clubs take on the role of educating their members and businesses about the benefits of hiring people with disabilities and the importance of creating stronger and more vibrant communities.Once a business considers filling vacancies with people who have a disability, Rotary at Work will connect employers to local employment agencies.The Rotary Liaison will create and manage a database of Supported employment agencies that are equipped to match job seekers to postions. The website is designed to educate and provide a seamless way for employers to request supported employment services in their area.Once the employer registers their services request the Rotary Liaison will match a Supported Employment service which will collaborate to;locate potential candidates who have a disability,pre-screening these candidates,provide on-the-job training,assist with workplace accommodations and provide on-going support.Rotary Clubs recognize the benefits of people who have a disability. Tapping into this labour pool is good business.

The Cridge Centre for the Family

Feeding the Future

Feeding the Future is a social enterprise developing as a natural (pun intended) extension of The Cridge Brain Injury Services' successful community garden and community cooking programs. What began in 2010 as a community cooking program that balanced education and application has grown in response to client feedback to include an on-property community garden. Clients who complete the community cooking program have continued to meet and share their resources and knowledge in community kitchens. Feeding the Future will use produce grown by Cridge Brain Injury Service clients, create value-added nutritional foods with the skills learned in the community cooking program, and sell the resulting goods weekly at neighbourhood farmers markets. Clients will be encouraged to explore their own areas of interest in the social enterprise, building meaningful employment skills in business planning and development, marketing, and customer service as well as the gardening and cooking they are already becoming expert in.

The Garth Homer Society

Supported Self-Employment Pilot Project

The purpose of this pilot is to develop and validate a practical working approach to supported self-employment (SSE) for people with developmental disabilities (DD), one of the most vulnerable and excluded of populations. Increasingly, SSE is being viewed within the community living sector as a viable employment option. However, there are few models for the delivery of SSE for people with DD, and for a variety of reasons existing models of self-employment for the 'difficult-to-employ' without disabilities do not work well for this population. In this project we will work with six developmentally disabled individuals to build self-employment businesses with the aims of (i) having the businesses generate cashflow within the project term, (ii) achieving specific employment-related learning and personal growth outcomes for each individual, and (iii) establishing the validity and practicality of our SSE service model.

Thompson Rivers University Foundation

Retail Kiosk Project

The ESTR Retail Kiosk Project is a new and innovative initiative for our Retail Certificate Program. The purpose of this initiative is to provide hands-on, retail training for our students which will empower and better prepare them for employment. Students in the program are required to complete 6 hours of Retail Labs each week over the course of two semesters. Currently students are working on and off campus to complete their lab hours. The kiosk would provide students the opportunity to connect classroom theory to real employment training and practice such as: - operating a small business and entrepreneuship - ordering and monitoring inventory - pricing and marketing product - stocking, displaying and packaging product - completing sales transactions and daily reconciliations - practicing customer service and sales This project also extends beyonds our program. Along with being interdisciplinary, aligns well with TRU's Strategic Priorities to increase: Student Success, Entrepreneurial Capacity, Intercultural Understanding, and Sustainability.

Vancouver Adapted Music Society

The Strong Sessions Music Series

Following up on VAMS recent, highly successful The Strong Sessions recording project, wherein over 20 VAMS members wrote, recorded and performed some amazing music, the project will work with music venues to establish a series of concerts featuring VAMS members. The intention is to feature VAMS members at clubs, bars and other public venues, exposing a broader sector of the concert-going public to the talents of musicians with disabilities. The project will offer opportunities for experienced VAMS performers to showcase their music, as well as enable those who are new to performing to do so in a supported environment, where their accessibility needs have been arranged for. Over the course of 12 months, ten "VAMS Nights" will be staged, offering audiences a chance to appreciate music written and performed by people with significant physical disabilities. At these gigs, VAMS will offer information about inclusion and accessibility, promote the recordings of VAMS members and engage other musicians interested in collaborating on future performances and recordings.