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.

Access to Music Foundation

Death in a Dumpster: The impact arts engagement has on youth aging out of care

This project is a collaborative venture between youth, our organization, and professional mentors in association with Directions Youth Services that supports our theory of change that sustained arts programming is a viable engagement method that has lasting benefits for street involved youth and youth aging out of care. Research suggests that the arts provide a positive entry point for youth to develop personal agency and is useful in redirecting inappropriate behaviors and ameliorating depression and suicidal ideations. We have evidence of this through our 2 year relationship with DYS where significant numbers of youth expressed a strong need to access creative activities that help them self-assess personal benchmarks. This project responds to that need and also provides a vehicle whereby youth can develop social, leadership, and applied job related skills as they transition into independence. It is critical that youth do not incur any economic burden while participating in this project and that their efforts are recognized through monetary expression. Long range plans are to amass qualitative, quantitative and narrative data; the last of which is documented on film. Research, anticipated outcomes, film documentation and methodology will be shared with other agencies working with these youth populations to encourage a multi-nested systems change to increase funding for arts and media programs and training, program implementation, heightened issues awareness, and advocacy.

Archway Community Services


• This project originated from: o Life Chats (LC)is a youth led peer support group and was developed through the HECC initiative to engage and connect youth with lived care experience (WLCE) to each other in Abbotsford. o Learned through LC that youth: • Were still not aware of the supports that they could access after 19 and wanted one on one information from other youth. • Benefitted from having something to do with their hands while connecting with each other. Crafts provided this outlet. • Wanted to make crafts that were marketable. HECC youth developed the following idea and were involved in all aspects of the proposal, including development of the budget. This new proposed project provides 1. Continuation and expansion of Life Chats including connection to resources 2. Research opportunity on social craft enterprise 3. Development of resource for youth leaders to start LC in their own area. a. Purpose: i. To build community within youth WLCE and develop young leaders. ii. To provide youth WLCE with helpful resources in their community. iii. To provide an opportunity to participate in building skills in craft making. iv. To learn about craft making as a social enterprise v. To facilitate youth connection to craft markets to feature their art vi. To share with other youth leaders in other communities how to create a Life Chats group.

Aunt Leah's Independent Lifeskills Society

Foster Youth Food Guide

Foster youths face a multitude of challenges after aging out of government care, from housing to education and employment. However, one of the most immediate and pressing obstacles youth face after losing support, is where they’re going to find their next meal. Due to a lack of support, we know that over half of BC foster youth will become dependent on income assistance (MCFD, 2015). This means that for the majority of foster youth, their weekly food allowance is approximately $18 after factoring in living expenses (Raise the Rates, 2015). As a result, many foster youths need to find alternative sources of free food or confront days of hunger. The good news is that there are many organizations, like Aunt Leah's Place, that offer free food and community supports in Metro Vancouver. Using youth experience and knowledge of these organizations, the Foster Youth Food Guide will create an online food resource that helps young people locate organizations that are transit accessible, safe and promote food security. The guide will be built using Google Maps’ API and include clear directions, detailed descriptions, and pictures or videos of each space. To gather this data, youth researchers will travel and review each location. We believe this project falls directly within Fostering Change’s small grants funding approach, as it is a youth-led project that fills a gap with actionable knowledge and builds relationships between foster youth and their communities in Metro Vancouver.

The Canoe Project

The Canoe Project will be designed, organized and implemented by Aunt Leah’s Youth Advisory Committee (YAC). The Cano Project has two core aims: First, we (YAC) will participate again in a week-long canoe journey with the stated goal of "recognizing the past by Pulling Together to enhance understanding between Public Service Agencies and Aboriginal Peoples by canoeing the traditional highway, strengthening our future relations". Our journey last year, from Harrison Lake, down the Fraser, to Semiahmoo was a powerful journey which reconnected us culturally on the water, together eating food and listening to Elders around the fire. It also enhanced our understanding of ourselves as youth from care and our connection to public service agencies. We rowed for 5 days with MCFD Social Workers, RCMP Officers, Chiefs and Elders. We will row again in Summer 2016, but this time we will bring a new cohort of young people with us, expanding the representation of youth from care on the 2016 Pulling Together Canoe Journey ( by a factor of two! Second, we plan to present the story publicly of who we are as youth from care, using the Canoe Journey as a metaphor. We hope to work on a small presentation that we can take on the road as a workshop in settings such as schools, service clubs, service agencies and conferences. We will make a small video of our proposed presentation and deliver it at TEDx Kids in hopes of getting our message out to a larger audience.

Federation of BC Youth In Care Networks

BC Child and Youth in Care Week Celebration Bursaries

The Federation has a process that engages youth in and from care as part of a selection committee for grants and bursaries. This year with the upcoming election and BC Child and Youth in Care Week, we would like to provide additional support to young leaders from care in BC and their adult allies who are looking to host community based celebrations, celebrate a BCCYICW award winner or ensure the increased visibility, celebration and engagement of young leaders in non-partisan pre-election activities. The Federation would recruit youth in and from care to sit on a selection committee, review the applications that come in from across the province and recommend grant recipients. The Federation would then process and mail out the payments required. Youth in and from care will have input in the design of the bursary criteria. Finally their involvement will also be tracked towards honorarium payments according to the Federation's policy.

Global Youth Education Network Society

Fostering Change Community Organizing Jumpstart

Fostering Change Community Organizing Jumpstart will provide new community organizers with the skills, relationships and confidence to run effective campaigns. It involves 3 components: Component 1: Organize BC Core Training in the Lower Mainland for three youth from the Fostering Change network. Participants will learn: - How to tell their story to mobilize others to take action and gain insight into their own leadership potential - How to recruit and retain volunteers - How to devise an effective campaign strategy - How to select tactics that align with their strategic goals Component Two: At a Tactics Training in April, 25-40 participants will work collaboratively to design tactics for the Support the 700 campaign in the lead-up to the May 2017 provincial election. Component Three: From June 25-29, 2017, three youth will attend Campaign Bootcamp (a working title), a 5-day residential program that will bring together grassroots and non-profit movement builders to deepen their learning of effective campaigning and movement-building strategies. With support from skilled and experienced trainers, participants will be guided through creating ready-to-launch campaigns, and will walk away with the confidence to use their voice to campaign on the issues that matter to them. Participants will learn: - How to build campaign from beginning to end that centre marginalized voices - How to campaign in partnership with other movement builders

Kamloops and District Elizabeth Fry Society

Mobilize Change for Youth Experiencing Homelessness

A Way Home is a committee led by youth with lived experience implementing Kamloops Youth Homelessness Action Plan. We have identified a two component project. The first is a launch event to release results from our Youth Homelessness Count – the first in Canada. Findings showed 56 youth currently homeless and 73 who experienced episodic homelessness. The event’s purpose is to educate public through the voices of youth providing recommendations for social change. The event would inspire a community movement pre-election. Youth will be involved in the planning and leadership. The launch event will engage everyone around youth homelessness and how to prevent it for youth aging out. The second component would be to hire a contractor to create a business plan on the Youth Count key recommendation: Safe Suite housing program. There is a significant need for Youth Housing First for youth ages 18-24 that are aging out of foster care and/or experiencing homelessness. In 2015, we completed a pilot of this model with 4 youth and limited staffing where we recognized the need for 24/7 staffing. Safe Suites would serve youth who need a supportive environment to stabilize and transcend homelessness. A contractor would complete a Safe Suites business plan from youth and community feedback and research.The plan would be used to engage provincial ministries and the private sector for funding sustainability. A Way Home would mobilize this plan in community to bring this project to life.

Kiwassa Neighbourhood Services Association

Neighbourhood Love Letters

Neighbourhood Love Letters (LL): an arts-based community engagement process connecting youth-in-and-from care (YIC) with residents in Hastings-Sunrise & Grandview-Woodlands to harvest the deep, unspoken seeds of belonging that make up a neighbourhood , and reflect the spirit of neighbourhood back to itself, in it’s own words, illustrated in shared public spaces. Supported by Corrina Keeling, Lead Artist, Diego Cardona, Youth Coordinator and Vicki Li, Volunteer Coordinator, a spring and summer engagement process for resident volunteers, inclusive of a group of youth-in-care, gain skills in art installation and community-directed inquiry, and interact at multiple points along the way, including meeting in person, contributing to the LL Scrapbooks, and witnessing the fruits of their own dialogue through temporary sidewalks and street installations in the neighbourhood. Fall harvest of scrapbook writings and photo documentation of sidewalk/street installation will form the basis of an arts exhibit and dialogue between youth and adults. LL will work w youth through networks including VACFSS-CRUW, Urban Butterflies, Youth Matters, Templeton CST, RISE, Roving Leaders. Importance of connections & social capital for all people is well-documented. Weaving YIC connection to and aspirations for place and home with those of other residents will provide a tangible, beautiful record of community affection and dialogue, & insight into strengthening connections in place.

Lu'ma Native Housing Society

Aboriginal Youth Mentorship & Housing Program

Current core program goals are to aid, assist and support 15-20 Aboriginal Youth that have or will be “Aging out of Care” to develop life-skills and other key areas to assist in their transition to Adulthood. Main stream funding sources that the Aboriginal Youth Mentorship and Housing Program are partnered with require results such as employment, education and/or housed. The youth in the AYM&HP successfully acquired these goals however maintaining these achievements has proven to be challenging at best. Through the evolution and development of the program it has become evident that the youth need more than connections to resources and removal of physical barriers. It has been our experience that our Indigenous Youth also need access to healing through a variety of practices to match each youth’s individual needs such as traditional, cultural, alternative and innovative methods to assist with trauma, addictions, mental health and other emotional barriers the youth are experiencing. Youth that have Aged Out of Care endure long wait lists that do not allow for actual in the moment planning, resistance to alternative methods of healing and wellness as well as little or no support to become engaged in cultural activities or are lacking financial resources to travel to and participate in the cultural experiences that could be available to them. This application will provide youth opportunities to strengthen or develop cultural connections to community.

McCreary Centre Society

Resilience revolution: Roles and realities of stress in youth’s lives

McCreary’s Youth Research Academy (YRA) are a group of youth in and from care who are learning research skills and conducting research projects of interest to youth in care and the agencies that serve them. In March 2017 the YRA are facilitating a Research Slam to offer other youth with care experience the opportunity to learn some research skills and engage in a short research project about how young people experience and manage stress. This project will build on the results of the Research Slam. Members of the YRA, and Slam participants who wish to remain involved, will develop and deliver a knowledge translation workshop. The workshop will share the findings of the research into how young people experience and manage stress, and will also gather feedback on the results and ideas to increase resilience among youth. A minimum of four workshops will be delivered to diverse youth, including a minimum of two workshops with youth in and from care. Participants will then be supported to synthesize the feedback and to develop key messages to share with stakeholder groups (e.g., foster parents, teachers, youth). In addition to the knowledge translation workshops, project participants will also undertake a review of available tools and resources to help youth develop the skills they need to effectively manage stress.

Options Community Services

Nothing About Us Without Us All Candidates Meeting

The 2017 Nothing about Us without Us All Candidates Meeting is a project led by youth in and from foster care. The objective of the meeting is have our local candidates present their thoughts and plans that they have for youth as we lead up to the provincial election in May 2017. This idea came out of discussions that was facilitated by the Vancouver Foundations Manager of Communications, Jon Garner at the Fostering Change Grantees forum on Feb. 20, 2017. The plan is to have a partnership of youth serving agencies in Surrey develop a steering committee that will oversee the planning of the project. That Steering table will include youth, young people in and from care, youth serving agencies, and other community members. The steering committee will support young people in activities such as, reaching out to candidates, prepping for the event (i.e., developing questions, organizing the evening agenda, seeking community partnership, etc…), and securing the venue and snacks (i.e., coffee, water, pastries, etc…). Youth will also be supported in organizing focus groups in the community of Surrey to gather information on youth issues that will inform the questions that will be presented to the candidates. Training will be provided to assist youth participants of the event and there will be 3 months of follow-up of the project.

PeerNet BC

Fostering Access and Inclusion

Fostering Access and Inclusion project will provide youth in and out of care, front line youth in and out of care workers and agencies of care opportunities to participate in anti-oppression, leadership, peer support and facilitation training workshops. PeerNetBC has seen a need for this project with our experience working with multiple youth in care serving agencies to build training opportunities for youth in and out of care to facilitate community events such as "A Hand Up Not A Hand Out" and Federation of BC Youth In Care Networks leadership camps. These workshops help build awareness and give youth and adult allies skills and tools to navigate their own journey to advocate for their needs in and out of care systems and transition to a more connected community and network. PeerNetBC will provide scholarships for youth to attend our regular Spring and Fall workshop series as well as customized workshops for youth in care serving agencies. This will also include a special summer series geared specifically for youth. This series provides opportunities for youth from a diverse range of knowledge and experiences to come together to build and share their own skills and those of their peers. Our goal is to build and bridge connections among youth towards being able to implement systemic change in addressing their needs. For information about our current Spring Workshops here's the link:

Ready to Rent BC Association

Walk With Support Expansion

Over the past two years Ready to Rent (R2R) has been engaging with youth to understand their housing support needs. Through surveying over 500 youth, Ready to Rent has learned that 71% of youth have had housing related questions and didn't know who to ask in regards to these questions. Ready to Rent embarked to understand if a housing support model that incorporated texting in addition to in-person, email and call support could be an impactful and accessible form of housing support for youth. From in person consultations with 40 young people, 80% told Ready to Rent that they would utilize a text support line to solve housing related issues. We explored various options for providing IM and texting service and have identified iCarol as the most appropriate and cost effective platform, the platform being used be Need2, youth suicide prevention line. iCarol integrates texting/IM with data tracking and resource sections. R2R will have increased capacity to support thousands of youth in their housing journey. Furthermore, the iCarol platform will allow R2R to learn about the unique housing issues of youth and respond to these issues through adjusting course curriculum and supports. For example, if data indicates that eviction rates due to poor pest management are particularly high in Nanaimo, Ready to Rent can use this to inform course content to meet regional needs. Ready to Rent will share these research learnings with the community for collective impact.

School District #62 - Sooke

Supporting Education for Children/Youth in Care in Partnership - A Collaborative, Developmental Evaluation of Year 1

For the past several years, the Sooke School District (SD62) and the Ministry of Family and Child Development (MCFD) have been engaged in a leading-edge collaborative initiative, exploring ways to improve educational outcomes for children and youth in care (CYIC). Their goal is to help children in foster care and in kinship care to graduate from high school and move into post-secondary opportunities. In spring 2016, SD62 and MCFD committed to work together on an initiative to develop a school-based social work team that will focus on children and youth in care to help them be successful in school and to graduate. The partners have been guided by best/promising practice evidence from the literature, including the Fostering Success – Improving Educational Outcomes for Youth In/From Care report (Rutman & Hubberstey, 2016) and the recommendations contained therein. To support the initiative’s implementation and knowledge translation efforts – i.e., to help the SD62 and MCFD team achieve positive change and advance knowledge, policy, and practice - an ongoing evaluation and research process was sought. Through the process of conducting a developmental evaluation of the initiative’s initial years, this project will assist MCFD and SD62 to identify and subsequently measure the initiative’s milestones, successes and challenges as well as student- and systems-level/organizational outcomes. The research and evaluation component of the initiative will also produce a report on the initiative’s initial year, which can be used by communities across BC seeking to undertake collaborative action to foster educational success for children and youth in care.

The MacMillan Family Foundation

About Us, With Us: A Fellowship Program With the Youth in Care Community

British Columbia has the highest rates of child poverty in Canada. The challenges facing B.C. youth in and from foster care in Vancouver are among the most acute in the country. At Discourse Media, our own analysis - after several months embedded in the youth in and from care community in Vancouver - found that the foster care system was most often presented in the context of conflict and crisis. The episodic news cycle pits politicians against advocates, provincial bureaucrats against regional bureaucrats, parents against the system. It casts families as broken. Stories are triggered by tragedy. There is little capacity in media for data analysis. Youth perspectives are largely left out, yet theirs are some of the most trenchant questions about the system. They need channels through which they can pose questions, amplify solutions and mobilize their knowledge. Discourse Media seeks Vancouver Foundation support for a youth in and from care fellowship program designed to build capacity with interested youth (engagement workshops, listening events and story-to-action meetings). As a first step, we will pilot a fellowship experience with a member of the youth in care community and embed them into our journalism team in Vancouver, with mentorship from Discourse reporter and producer Brielle Morgan, who focuses on child welfare. We have identified several youth who might qualify for a fellowship and will partner with the foundation on selecting a fellow and supporting their work.

University of Victoria - Office of Research Services

Future Anything: Supportive campuses for former youth in care

UVic has committed tuition support for four years and is committed to creating a welcoming environment that supports FYIC in their transition, connects them to supports, and facilitates success. Lilia Zaharieva, with support of Deb Rutman and Jim Anglin, prepared a report reviewing current literature, gathering perspectives from UVic FYIC, and making recommendations (From a Ward to Award, and Beyond). In keeping with the aims of Fostering Change, we propose to engage in “a strong dialogue, learning, action and capacity building process” with staff, faculty and FYIC at UVic, and to connect with and learn from other BC post-secondary institutions. Using participatory and evidence-based action-research strategies, project activities will engage FYIC as leaders/facilitators of change within UVic and across BC PSE. This grant will support the development, evaluation and refinement of a workshop that will be piloted at a UVic Staff Pro-D event in June. At a recent meeting of BC university VPs Student Affairs, there was “strong interest” and “no other university is doing such work” (Jim Dunsdon, UVic AVPSA, April 24). UBC and SFU are eager to offer this workshop, when available, on their campuses. In discussions on April 12, RCY representatives indicated interest in being involved in this initiative. Fostering Change support would enable this developmental and dissemination work and add credibility to a province-wide learning process for FYIC and those in PSE Student Services.

Vancity Community Foundation

Exploring Sustainable Youth Transitions Policy Advocacy in BC

In this project First Call (FC) will explore how we can continue to activate the FosteringChange advocacy platform thru our coalition’s collective resources & ongoing advocacy. A 1st step will be convening our youth-serving members & others engaged in supporting YIC transitions for a series of sharing & brainstorming discussions about their roles in research, youth engagement & youth leadership related specifically to raising public awareness & engaging in systemic advocacy. We will be looking for their ideas & interest in how FC can collaborate & provide a platform for more opportunities for youth to engage directly w/ decision-makers in proposing policy changes & increased public investments to improve outcomes for YI/FC, as well as monitoring the response from gov’t & other institutions. Many of the issues affecting YIC transitions (e.g. inadequate welfare rates, housing barriers, low wage jobs w/ no benefits, barriers to completing school, barriers to post-secondary, problems with access to needed health care, etc) also affect youth who are not from care & connect with the work of many different FC coalition members (unions, health org’s, educators, family support agencies, immigrant services, indigenous org’s, etc). Our exploratory discussions will extend to these other partners to identify ways for youth to engage in proposing solutions within & thru their org’s. These conversations will inform and shape a FosteringChange legacy dev'ment grant appl’n by FC later in 2017

Vancouver Aboriginal Child and Family Services Society

Keeping Connected: A research project with youth aging into community

Youth in/from VACFSS care and adult co-researchers will: 1. Develop a supportive "exit interview" process for youth leaving care at 19 2. Develop a tool, to be used in dialogue between those youth and their workers, to measure youth connectedness to caring adults, culture and community 3. Pilot the exit interview and tool with VACFSS youth who leave care in the next 12 months 4. Incorporating the exit interview and tool, develop the tools, process and Ethics proposal for a longitudinal outcomes study to explore how youth connectedness changes and is best supported in the years after leaving care. It is planned that this study will be conducted in partnership with the McCreary Centre Society and will also engage youth served by MCFD and Collective Impact partners. The project will be informed by the work of the TRRUST Measurement and Caring Connections Clusters. It is prompted by the desire of our youth to strengthen community and cultural connectedness for care-leavers. Developed with the youth on our Research Working Group, the project will build their leadership capacity and research/advocacy skills, give workers improved tools to focus on youth connectedness, and deepen our partnership with the McCreary Centre Society. VACFSS is a unique position to undertake this kind of longitudinal outcomes study, as "aging into community" is part of our restorative practice and our workers/caregivers already keep in touch with many youth long after they leave care.