Grants

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.

Vancity Community Foundation

Enhancing Youth Transitions Policy Advocacy in BC

Anticipating the sunsetting of the Fostering Change Initiative (FCI) at VF, First Call (FC) is interested in helping sustain young leaders’ engagement in policy advocacy to fully achieve the system changes needed to support better transitions for youth aging out of care in BC. In our work on this, we’ve heard & observed that current policy advocacy for YI/FC happens in silos & primarily at the municipal level. By bridging the FCI network & a coalition of 101 orgs with a background in prov level policy advocacy, FC is well-positioned to further efforts for systemic change. Recent consultation with 25 orgs working w/ YI/FC, including young leaders, disability grps, immigrant services, Indigenous orgs, resid’l care providers, etc., told us: 1) Service agencies are looking for a place to hand off policy advocacy to & more ways to connect youth who want to do policy advocacy; 2) Existing YACs need support to come together, communicate, learn from each other. This project will build capacity for FC to work collaboratively with youth-serving orgs to engage & support YI/FC to participate & take leadership in the range of awareness & advocacy activities needed to inform policy-makers, build public support for greater transitions investments & monitor system change. The project will develop support for YI/FC interested in moving from self-advocacy to systemic advocacy thru training, networking w/ adult allies & other young leaders, mentoring, & opportunities to practice new skills
$150,000.00
2017

Making ends meet: Low wage work, poverty and healthy communities in BC

How does low wage poverty affect health and wellbeing in Metro Vancouver and how will policy changes impact this. There are significant policy changes impending at multiple levels including provincial and federal poverty reduction plans potential changes to how health care is funded and delivered, changes to how child care is delivered at a provincial level as well as significant increases to the minimum wage. This research will help us evaluate the impacts of these policy changes on the health and wellness of individuals, families and communities.
$225,000.00
2017

Community Impact Coop (CIC)

The CIC is a co-sharing training hub for unfunded advocacy groups of people in poverty lacking access to available resources due to poverty barriers and our charitable system. The CIC creates one entity that meets the needs of many excluded groups, redirecting the flow of established resources and building bridges across communities. The CIC Ethics of Engagement Project identifies barriers to inclusion of those with the lived experience of poverty in public-policy planning, partnering with government developing poverty reduction plans to create best practises and measurable outcomes that move people from ‘screaming’ to be heard on the outside of decision-making tables to leading the process.
$225,000.00
2017

Facing Poverty in our Communities: building engaging networks

Through strengthening relationships from local to local and from local to provincial, the short-term aim is to change how we take action and work together to be more effective in the long-term aim of changing policies to benefit the health and well-being of people living in poverty. Many local groups are over-burdened with dealing with the symptoms of poverty and need support in taking action at the systemic level to tackle the root causes of poverty. This project will involve bringing together key provincial stakeholders for an intensive 2-day workshop in order to identify existing assets and work collaboratively on developing an effective provincial network. There has not been a provincial gathering of this nature in recent history so this has the potential to have a powerful impact. During the workshop, asset mapping will demonstrate the strength of existing local initiatives and provide opportunities for learning across communities. The gathering will also include an evaluation of supports needed to work on systemic change and what is the most effective way to nurture that support within the local, regional and provincial context without adding too much to over-stretched groups. Due to resources and the need to have a directed conversation the attendance will be limited to a meeting of 25 representatives. The framework developed through this process will build outwards to include more organizations and voices as it grows.
$10,000.00
2016

Aging Out of Foster Care in B.C. Study Circles

Working with the Canadian Federation of University Women-BC Council and their clubs around the province, this project will explore the challenges facing young people aging out of foster care in B.C. by organising a working group to review and update the Study Circle Facilitators Guide, by training adult and experiential facilitators, by hosting a series of local study groups through CFUW-BC clubs across the province, by facilitating an Action Forum, and by distributing the Facilitators Guide, Action Ideas Pamphlet, and Final Report to clubs, study circle participants, and community organisations. We intend to hire an experiential young person with facilitation skills to coordinate the provincial activities and an adult co-facilitator to assist with developing the guide, facilitating training and hosting the Action Forum.
$34,838.00
2016

Connecting Community to Surrey Youth Leaving Care, Phase 2

Building on the outcomes and learning from phase 1, this project will take the next step in engaging community members to support Surrey youth transitioning from care. The goals of the project are: youth engagement/voice; taking local action; raising public awareness; and collaboration with the local Aboriginal friendship centre. An advisory group of youth in and from care will guide every stage of the project. They will participate in a weekend retreat, where they will prioritize ideas from the key themes of education; skills training and employment; housing; physical and mental health; and connections with others, identified in phase 1. Phase 1 participants and others will then convene to develop specific action plans and mobilize the community to roll out initiatives for 3-5 priority activities, which will be evaluated and revised if necessary, to ensure that they continue after project completion. We will convene events in years 2 and 3 that bring together community stakeholders in Surrey, to share knowledge and solutions for youth aging out of care. A web-based resource will be developed and distributed widely, to profile the project, list current initiatives for use by practitioners and youth aging out of care, and describe systemic reforms needed for lasting change. Partnership with FRAFCA will enhance Indigenous cultural awareness and inform priority activities. The final activity will be a public engagement event intended to promote and sustain the projects.
$100,000.00
2016

Code Red: Testing a “CARP” approach to B.C.’s affordability crisis

Political systems respond to those who organize and show up – at the ballot box and in between elections. While aging Canadians have long had umbrella advocacy groups persistently advancing their interests, younger Canadians have not. Our "CARP for younger Canada" approach tests what we can achieve by filling that gap. We'll influence systemic change via 4 key levers: How we act - we'll engage younger British Columbians in non-partisan, evidence-based political organizing. Our public Code Red campaign will be a catalyst. Beliefs – along the way we'll tackle the belief that younger people are entitled, lazy, etc. (i.e. individually at-fault) and replace it with a belief that society is holding us back by failing to invest in us; via earned media, extensive community presentations, and our website, social and email channels. Resource flows – we'll channel the above to spur increased public investment in younger Canadians, guided by an annual analysis. Laws & policies – we'll mobilize support for policies that ease the squeeze, e.g. adequately funded universal child care, extended parental leave, housing market reform and investments. * * Rather than inflexibly committing to a SINGLE policy, we seek opportunities to advance whatever evidence-based policies have in-the-moment traction WITHIN our realm of research & expertise on the social determinants of health. This project has a clear emphasis on housing and family/affordability policy.
$75,000.00
2016

Regional Poverty Reduction Hubs: Connecting Communities for Upstream Action

There's nothing like meeting face to face and building relationships in local communities. We learned that when we travelled around the province hosting community workshops and we want to build on that to become a truly engaged provincial network. We have developed a very productive coalition of groups working on anti-poverty initiatives within Metro Vancouver and we plan to take the best practices of this work and test them in 2 other regions in BC (Okanagan and North). These regions have been selected because of their differences in public and political support for this systemic change so they will provide a productive comparison for growing the network in the future. Our work is focused on three streams: building capacity of our member organizations, including increased opportunities for collaboration (with the aim of impacting the resource flows of a social system, how knowledge and people can interact in different ways); increasing public awareness of these issues and the need for systemic change (to influence beliefs and routines); and political advocacy (to change the authority flows of a social system). We plan to take these into other regions by setting up 2 Regional Poverty Reduction Hubs with provision of regional coordinators and expansion of our programs, including a Leadership Development program, regional Speaker Series events, coordinating action research with local partners, and producing outreach material (video, online, print) that resonates locally.
$225,000.00
2016

Fostering Change in Surrey: Wrapping the Community Around Kids Leaving Care

The Surrey Poverty Reduction Coalition (SPRC) exists to foster collaboration in Surrey to address the unique challenges of people living in poverty. With our diverse membership and strong links with the City of Surrey, we are well placed to bring together the various sectors that will be needed to make a deep and lasting impact in the lives of some of our most vulnerable young people. Using the framework of “THIS is how we end poverty in Surrey”, which focuses on four key policy areas that affect people living in poverty: Transportation, Housing, Income and Supports, and working in partnership with youth in/from care, the SPRC will engage the community to do a radical rethinking of the ways in which youth are supported when they transition from the care of the MCFD, into adulthood. Bringing our whole community along, including business, philanthropists, unions, etc. we are keenly interested in rethinking the way that we meet the needs of these young people, and helping them to be supported in achieving their aspirations. Using a collective impact approach, we will: compile available information and research on youth in/from care in Surrey; convene two multi-stakeholder workshops toward developing a framework for further action; and host a public event that will include the "The 19th Birthday Party" art exhibit. All phases of the project will engage youth in/from care - "not about them without them".
$30,000.00
2015

Keeping BC's Children and Youth on the Public Agenda

Working closely with our coalition partner organizations, First Call will work to strengthen and support the collective voice for the rights and well-being of BC's children & youth.Some of the key issues the project will address are BC's continued high rates of child & family poverty & growing inequality, the urgent need to increase investments in early childhood & support for young families, improvements to BC's child labour standards, better supports for vulnerable youth and reducing children's exposures to environmental toxins. The project will identify issues/challenges and propose solutions using 3 strategies: public education(including conducting research and disseminating/popularizing others' research), mobilizing communities & individuals through workshops/presentations, media work, social media/web resources, election toolkits, e-alerts, etc., and direct public policy advocacy (briefs, letters, reports, candidate surveys, convening/facilitating discussions among advocates and with decision-makers & policy-influencers, e.g. public officials, business & community reps.).
$90,000.00
2014

Surrey Poverty Reduction Plan Implementation

Implementation of the Plan is underway. Steps have been taken to act on many of the recommendations of the Plan and there are a number of quality programs, projects and initiatives that address poverty in Surrey. This project will continue the work of promoting the Plan, undertaking or supporting existing and new projects and serving as a catalyst for the development of new initiatives. We will develop an evaluation framework for process and outcome evaluations of the Surrey Poverty Reduction Plan. In partnership with the business community we will initiate a project to provide support and education to landlords on housing the homeless in Surrey as well as identifying tenants who require resources and connecting them to support services. We will organize a Seeing is Believing tour for Surrey service clubs and a community forum to inform stakeholders on the implementation of the Plan. We will support and promote other poverty-reduction projects currently underway and disseminate poverty-related research data. These activities will be supported by a part-time coordinator.
$40,000.00
2014

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.
$10,000.00
2017

Restorative Aboriginal Child Welfare: Research, Practice & Approaches

Youth involved in the 3 youth engagement programs at VACFSS develop positive identity, concrete skills and cultural connections to support their transition out of care. This project will investigate how these programs are effective, determining how we can better utilize Inclusive Foster Care to extend the identified restorative practices to all youth in care at VACFSS. We will maximize the support from Vancouver Foundation by leveraging in-kind supports from a broad network of community partners. Year 1 will involve youth led research on how the Urban Butterflies, Youth Advisory Council (YAC) and Culturally Relevant Urban Wellness (CRUW) programs contribute to setting up diverse Aboriginal youth for success in their transition out of care in concrete and measurable ways. This will involve supporting a group of youth selected from YAC and CRUW as co-researchers throughout the project. The 2nd year will involve a youth-led process of engaging youth in care, caregivers (foster parents), biological family, and community partners, to generate a series of evidence-based recommendations for policy and practice revision at VACFSS. Year 3 will then involve the same group of youth co-researchers in a process of implementing the recommendations alongside a youth-led process of monitoring and evaluation. This same year will also include a process of knowledge exchange, sharing our research, policy development, and outcomes with community partners and other interested stakeholders.
$175,000.00
2015

Culturally Relevant Urban Wellness (CRUW) Program

There are critical gaps in services for connecting Vancouver's most vulnerable youth to green space for wellness in holistic and dynamic ways. CRUW addresses these gaps by bringing together Aboriginal youth in foster care with new immigrant youth. CRUW promotes engagement with a deeply historical Aboriginal relationship to land, using the wellness youth derive from this connection as a catalyst for holistic and sustainable wellness in a diverse urban environment. CRUW is grounded in 4 program objectives: Honouring Our Diversity; Emotional and Cultural Competence; Holistic & Sustainable Urban Wellness; and Mentorship. The core UBC Farm program is the gateway to CRUW. Youth first join as participants, and have the opportunity to return a second year as paid youth mentors. Youth mentors and other alumni then have the opportunity to attend both the Cottonwood Community Garden program, and the Life Skills program. These 3 aspects of CRUW provide a multi-year trajectory of service to 100+ youth annually, empowering them as skilled and healthy agents of change within their communities.
$91,470.00
2014

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.
$15,000.00
2014

Vancouver Art Gallery Association

DOUGLAS COUPLAND: everywhere is anywhere is anything is everything

It is the mandate of the Vancouver Art Gallery to contextualize regional experience and artistic concerns within national and international fields of cultural practice; to introduce local and visiting audience members to the important art of this region; and to expand expectations for what art can be. This project will present the visual art of Vancouver-based artist Douglas Coupland. It will highlight principle themes of the artist's investigations such as what defines national culture and the impact of media communications on contemporary life. The national and international profile of the artist will be greatly strengthened through the Vancouver exhibition (with several major new works including a large Lego project and The Brain installation), the first substantial book on the artist, an international tour (tbc), and an unprecedented use of communications media to reach the public. We are planning an energetic engagement with renewed and new audiences via social media and special programs for adults, children and youth.
$38,500.00
2013

Ian Wallace Exhibition and Publication

Vancouver Art Gallery will present the first major Canadian retrospective of internationally renowned Vancouver artist Ian Wallace, celebrating his pioneering use of large-format images juxtaposed with monochrome painting, which has had a lasting impact on raising the status of photography nationally and internationally. Wallace mentored Vancouver artists including Stan Douglas, Brian Jungen, Ken Lum, Rodney Graham and Jeff Wall. The exhibition catalogue will be the first publication to fully assess Wallace’s career by combining interpretive essays, images of the artist’s work and selections from his extensive theoretical writings.
$90,000.00
2011

Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre

MSG Theatre Lab

In 2009, actor-producer David C. Jones wrote a letter to vancouverplays.com, decrying the troubling absence of nonwhite faces on Vancouver’s stages. This letter triggered a flurry of responses from many Vancouver theatre artists. All agreed this lack of diversity would eventually doom Vancouver theatre into becoming socially irrelevant. Within such unforgiving cultural terrain, Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre plays a pivotal role in boldly promoting cultural diversity on Canada’s West Coast. Launched in 2012, our MSG Theatre Lab play development program addresses the challenge of visible minority underrepresentation by finding, developing and showcasing the next generation of Asian Canadian playwrights. Far more effective than simply encouraging diversity in casting, we believe writers alone possess the unique potential to create lasting change. The stories they choose to tell, and the characters they create have the power to affect the way people think and feel about the most important social issues of our time. Our aim is to create a canon of Asian Canadian plays ready to be produced professionally in Vancouver theatres. In doing so, we hope to create a series of cascading changes that will ultimately impact the entire cultural landscape in far-reaching ways.
$30,042.00
2015

Vancouver Association for Photographic Arts

Flash Forward Incubator Program

Presenting a new model for arts education and support, the Flash Forward Incubator Program provides a solution to secondary school art programming problems: a lack or shortage of funding for arts education and no access to working artists as mentors. As an extension of high school arts programming and working with the goals of school curriculums, Incubator is distinct in that it bridges work completed within high school settings with the professional world, facilitating meaningful contemporary art experiences and mentorships for students, and establishing an essential and supportive creative community for emerging artists within the high school setting and beyond.
$70,200.00
2018

Container Project

'Container Project' (working title) is a two-part project situated in North Vancouver’s Lonsdale Quay. Vancouver artists Erin Siddall and Sean Arden's 'Straightview' transforms a shipping container into a site-specific camera obscura that can be entered by viewers. This work act as a thematic departure point for a second container that will be converted into an exhibition space and curated by Vancouver-based Cate Rimmer. With a single aperture and multiple angled mirrors, 'Straightview' disrupts the concept of a single, fixed position of viewing using trompe d’oeil. The audience experiences a surprising and illusory projection of a view investigating the transitory nature of the North Shore’s and Burrard Inlet’s industrial history. The two containers will be stacked on top of one another, with 'Straightview' accessible by stairs from the ground up, in a utilitarian style that mimics the containers’ functional role as mass trade vessels. Rimmer’s first ‘floor’ exhibition will feature emerging First Nations artist Ryan McKenna. The film, 'Vision in 1792' depicts the Burrard inlet and the exploration of George Vancouver in 1792 through the unique perspective of a Coast Salish Shaman. Shown through the Shamen's viewpoint as he sings a 'coming into the house' song in his ancestral language, the work tells of the coming of the new long houses that will follow the arrival of the new people. Ultimately examining ways of seeing, the sea, trade routes, and Vancouver’s historic port.
$10,000.00
2015

Vancouver Bach Choir

Owen Underhill Commissioning and Premiere Performance Project

There is a dearth of Canadian unaccompanied pieces suitable for large choirs. The Vancouver Bach Choir plans to commission a seven-minute unaccompanied work from the highly respected Vancouver composer, Owen Underhill. The text will be in a First Nations language. The premiere performance of the Underhill commission is planned for a concert in February 2011 which will also include three winning pieces from the Bach Choir’s competition New Works for Large Choirs.
$7,500.00
2010

Vancouver Book and Magazine Fair Society

Automatic Poetry Festival

Since 1995 Word Vancouver has been presenting a wide range of author readings and events. However, it is the new addition to our regular poetry programming that we are most excited about, the Automated Poetry Project. We are acquiring a number of vending machines that will dispense poems written by Canadian or B.C. poets. The plan is that these vending machines would be hosted in local businesses for the entire month of September leading up to the festival weekend. We will partner with local businesses such as coffee shops and bookstores interested in hosting a vending machine as part of our Automated Poetry Project. We will also arrange for a number of poets to read from their books at these locations. In addition to acquiring our own vending machines we intend to work with other groups across the country who have similar machines. There is one machine coming in from Toronto (Toronto Poetry Venders) that is confirmed and we have leads on a few more including one in Montreal. Ideally we would have at least five. On Sunday the all machines would be moved to the festival site at VPL.
$7,500.00
2013

Vancouver Cantata Singers

Cathedrals of Science- Choral Music in New Spaces

This truly interdisciplinary collaboration merges performing arts with the science and research communities. The concert includes a new composition by Vancouver-based composer, Jordan Nobles. The text of the new composition will be chosen, in part, by the medical scientists and researchers involved. Plans include setting the poetry of Canadian poet (and physician) Ron Charach to music. Funding will allow the group to commission a work for a split choir, string orchestra and brass ensemble, which will be performed in the Blusson Centre.
$20,000.00
2010

Vancouver Chamber Choir

We Move Homeward: New Lyricism

The Vancouver Chamber Choir continues the commissioning and premiering of new works in order to make a significant addition to the wider choral repertoire, creating a legacy of repertoire which may be considered an important and permanent contribution to Canadian cultural history. Many of these works have already been published and have become part of the standard Canadian choral repertory. We hope to celebrate this remarkable achievement by presenting three new and recent major works from prominent Western Canadian composers -- Lloyd Burritt (BC), Daniel Janke (YT) and David MacIntyre (BC) -- in a subscription series concert event on Friday, November 14, 2014 at Ryerson United Church in Vancouver. The concert will also feature highlights from the vast repertoire of the Choir's past commissions. In the week leading up to the concert we will also offer our Interplay Composers' Workshop in which four emerging composers will have the opportunity to have their new works 'workshopped' by Jon, the Choir and the three featured guest composers.
$7,500.00
2014

Eric Whitacre Conducts

This project wil give young choral singers the opportunity to work directly with Grammy award-winning composer, conductor and all-round champion of choral music Eric Whitacre, arguably one of the most popular and most-performed composers of his generation. Included in the project are preparatory rehearsals for the youth singers under the direction of Jon Washburn, as well as 2 intensive days of direct interaction with Whitacre himself, culminating in a performance on the stage of Vancouver's Orpheum Theatre with Eric Whitacre conducting. Those singers from the community not involved in the concert will be invited to attend an open rehearsal to observe Whitacre in rehearsal. Each will receive a printed copy of the score to one of his most famous scompositions and at the end of the rehearsal will be invited to sing along with Eric Whitacre. This is also a rare opportunity for the singers of the Vancouver Chamber Choir to work directly with a composer whose works they perform, an opportunity to hone their interpretive skills under his personal tutelage.
$15,000.00
2012

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