Community Poverty Reduction Grants

Local governments interested in poverty reduction are invited to apply to the Community Poverty Reduction Fund. This $7 million program is administered by the Vancouver Foundation and is designed to address the root causes of poverty by supporting socially innovative projects identified by communities.

Successful projects will seek to better understand how to address the systemic causes of poverty, test the ability to influence the systemic behaviours that are creating or maintaining poverty, or will work to scale a proven social innovation. The Vancouver Foundation is responsible for administering the fund through their Field of Interest (FOI) grants.

Three types of grants are available under this program:

  1. Develop grants provide up to one year of funding of up to $10,000 for early-stage project ideas that organizations wish to develop into concrete project plans. They do not require matching funds.
  2. Test grants provide funding of up to $75,000 annually for projects that have developed a project plan and are looking to test an intervention to influence systemic change. They require matching funds and can involve multi-year support to a maximum of $225,000 over three years.
  3. Grow grants provide funding of up to $50,000 annually to scale proven social innovations. They require matching funds and can involve multi-year support to a maximum of $150,000 over three years. Grow grants allow project teams that have had some success in influencing change to scale up, out, or deep to achieve greater systemic impact.

The next funding intake is July 2018.

Examples of successful applications include the City of Surrey’s Social Innovation Lab process. Working in partnership with the Surrey Urban Indigenous Leadership Committee, the City received $225,000 to analyze the roots of Indigenous child poverty in Surrey and identify a range of opportunities with the potential for high impact and uptake.

The City of Revelstoke received funding to implement a poverty plan. Their “Pathways to Poverty” project will support implementation of the plan by leading community engagement, conducting awareness-raising activities, developing related policies, deepening relationships with community partners, and supporting innovative programs delivered by partner organizations. The City received $146,000 to support this work.

The City of New Westminster received a grant to hold a food security summit in advance of developing a food security action plan and sustainability framework. This project furthers the implementation of the City's Community Poverty Reduction Strategy.

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