The Government of Canada has announced several supports to help Indigenous peoples during COVID-19.
Latest Update - October 30th, 2020: Over $200 million in new funding for Indigenous peoples and communities
On October 30th, 2020, the Government of Canada announced over $200 million in new funding to provide support to Indigenous peoples and communities. This includes:
- $120.7 million to help Indigenous early learning and child care facilities safely operate during the pandemic.
- $59 million for First Nations to adapt on reserve community infrastructure to implement public health and safety measures in community buildings.
- $25.9 million to provide immediate support to Indigenous post-secondary institutions in 2020-21. The investment will help these institutions address increased costs and financial uncertainty resulting from the pandemic.
On this page:
- Indigenous Community Business Fund
- Indigenous Community Support Fund
- First Nations and Inuit Community Preparedness Fund
- Indigenous Entrepreneur Loans - BDC
- Interest-free Loans
- Funding programs
- First Nations Finance Authority Funding
- Indigenous Student Financial Assistance
- Indigenous Income Tax Issues - CRA and Covid-19
- Virtual Mental Health Supports for Indigenous Peoples
This fund will provide $117 million in non-repayable financial contributions to help support operating costs for First Nation, Inuit and Métis community-or collectively-owned businesses and microbusinesses whose revenues have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The fund seeks to provide support for businesses that do not qualify for other Government of Canada COVID-19 relief measures.
It is intended to relieve financial pressure and allow these businesses and microbusinesses to strengthen operations and support their viability during the pandemic, with the goal of positioning them for recovery.
The fund has 2 streams:
- Stream 1: Funding will be transferred directly to communities and collectives to immediately support their COVID-19 economic priorities. No applications are required for stream 1 funding.
- Stream 2: Funding will be proposal-based. Applications must be submitted by the community or collectives on behalf of the business.
There are no submission deadlines. Applications for funding are accepted on an ongoing basis until all funding has been allocated.
These new funds will provide Indigenous leadership with the flexibility needed to design and implement community-based solutions to prepare for and react to the spread of COVID-19 within their communities. These funds could be used for measures including, but not limited to:
- support for Elders and vulnerable community members
- measures to address food insecurity
- educational and other support for children
- mental health assistance and emergency response services
- preparedness measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19
For needs-based COVID-19 support funding, applicants are asked to submit their applications no later than November 30st, as funding must be disbursed by Indigenous Services Canada by December 31st, 2020.
This $100 million in spending will support support a range of federal health measures, including support for preparedness in First Nation and Inuit communities. These funds will:
- respond to identified needs to update and activate pandemic plans
- support an effective allocation of public health and primary health care capacity to respond to the COIVD-19 outbreak
- align response efforts with scientific evidence as determined by a medical officer of health
- address immediate needs in the short term
This dedicated finance program for Indigenous entrepreneurs offers loans of up to $350,000 to start or grow a business.
Apply for an interest-free loan of up to $30,000, including a non-repayable contribution of an additional $10,000, through Aboriginal Financial Institutions.
Funding for programs, services and initiatives to First Nations, Inuit and Northern communities, governments and individuals, as well as to Aboriginal and Métis organizations.
Some funding programs accept proposals through open calls with specific deadlines. Visit the calls for proposals web page for details.
The FNFA raises capital to finance community infrastructure and economic development for First Nation communities.
Indigenous students attending B.C.’s 25 public post-secondary institutions can request financial assistance from their school’s Indigenous student services.
- Guidance on the application of the Indian Act Exemption for Employment Income Guidelines to issues raised by the COVID-19 crisis
- Eligibility for the tax exemption
- Contact the CRA with your questions
Phone and online counselling, support programs, and treatment and healing centres are available virtually for Indigenous people across B.C.