Table of contents

Important dates

The application period for the 2023-26 Enhanced Capacity Advancement Program (ECAP) multi-year funding cycle is now open.

The application deadline to determine program eligibility is October 19, 2022.

Eligible organizations will receive information from program staff regarding the next stages in the application process.

Eligibility notice

The ECAP exists to support non-profit organizations that have a primary mandate and proven ability to support the non-profit and voluntary sector as a whole.

In order to be eligible, the majority of your organization’s work must build the capacity of other non-profit organizations. It must also provide diverse programs and services, which are intended for any non-profit organization in your community.

Read the detailed eligibility criteria below or in the ECAP Guidelines, or contact the program office for clarification before applying.

Overview

The ECAP helps to advance and strengthen the non-profit and voluntary sector, by providing multi-year operational funding for up to 3 years to Alberta-based non-profit organizations that have a primary mandate and proven ability to:

  • build the capacity of other non-profit organizations in Alberta, and
  • strengthen and advance the capacity of Alberta’s non-profit and voluntary sector as a whole*

*Programs and services provided by eligible organizations must be intended for any non-profit organization in the community, and may be offered at a local, regional or provincial scale.

The ECAP defines capacity building as the process of developing the knowledge, skill and ability to make and execute decisions in a manner that achieves effective and efficient results at the individual, organizational and sector level.

Funding through the ECAP focuses on strengthening the non-profit and voluntary sector in 5 focus areas:

  • strategic leadership capacity
  • adaptive capacity
  • management capacity
  • operational and technical capacity
  • systems capacity

The program recognizes that the specific needs of non-profit organizations are the product of broader sector challenges. Therefore, within the 5 focus areas, funding priority will be given to organizations working on issue areas identified by capacity building organizations. These priority issue areas may align with one or more of the following:

  • sector recovery
  • digital transformation
  • workforce
  • diversity, equity and inclusion
  • data and evaluation

For more details, read the ECAP Guidelines.

Funding

Designed to meet the unique needs of diverse capacity building non-profit organizations, the ECAP provides 2 levels of funding:

  • Core funding of up to $75,000 annually
  • Enhanced Capacity Building funding of up to $150,000 annually

Core funding

Supports internal capacity building and invests in the operations and administration of an organization to further its mission. Funding is determined based on meeting eligibility requirements and the internal capacity building outcomes identified within 4 of the capacity building areas of focus outlined above (excluding systems capacity). Demonstration of work in the sector priority issue areas (outlined above) will also be factored into funding decisions.

Organizations that have been successfully assessed for Core funding will then be assessed for Enhanced Capacity Building funding.

Enhanced Capacity Building funding

Supports external capacity building and invests in a broad range of activities designed to build the capacity of other non-profit organizations and the sector as a whole. Funding is determined based on the breadth and impact of the organization’s external capacity building outcomes as identified from all 5 capacity building areas of focus outlined above. Demonstration of work in the sector priority issue areas (outlined above) will also be factored into funding decisions.

Eligibility

Eligible organizations

To be eligible, organizations must have:

  • a primary mandate and proven ability to:
    • build the capacity of other non-profit organizations in Alberta, and
    • strengthen and advance the capacity of Alberta’s non-profit and voluntary sector as a whole
  • the ability to demonstrate:
    • proven ability to deliver on its mandate
    • sufficient community support for its mandate, which includes ongoing financial support from a range of sources
    • broad accessibility and use of diverse programs and services
  • registration as a non-profit organization, in good standing, under one of the following acts:
    • Societies Act
    • Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act with a registration in Alberta under the Business Corporations Act
    • Companies Act, Part 9 (Non-profit Companies)
    • Special Act of the Alberta Legislature
    • Part 21 of the Business Corporations Act – Extra-Provincial Corporations*
      *must have an Alberta-based address that is regularly monitored by an active member of the organization
  • a history of operating in Alberta for at least one year

Ineligible organizations

The ECAP is intended to support organizations with a primary mandate to build the capacity of other non-profit organizations through diverse programs and services, and strengthen the sector as a whole. Therefore, the following are not eligible for funding under the ECAP:

  • organizations that provide direct service to Albertans, as their primary mandate, or as the majority of their work
  • organizations that only provide a product-as-a-service, and not a diverse range of capacity building programs and services (for example, web-based platforms and apps, crowdfunding platforms, fintech)
  • organizations that provide funding to other non-profit organizations, as their primary mandate
  • organizations that provide capacity building support to a subsector of the non-profit and voluntary sector, as their primary mandate (for example, social services, arts and culture, sport, environment)
  • organizations that provide capacity building support to a specific demographic, as their primary mandate (for example, youth, seniors, newcomers, multicultural communities)
  • organizations that provide capacity building support with a specific topical focus, as their primary mandate (for example, rural or urban development)
  • municipalities
  • for-profit organizations
  • any other organizations not registered under one of the above-mentioned acts
  • organizations that have overdue or incomplete accounting and reporting relating to any grant previously awarded by the ministry
  • organizations that have received non-capital grant funding from the Community Initiatives Program (CIP) Operating or CIP Project-based in the current fiscal year
  • individuals

Eligible expenses

The ECAP provides ongoing operational funding for the following eligible expenses:

  • human resources
  • training
  • sector services
  • office operations
  • advertising, public awareness and marketing
  • communications
  • travel and meetings
  • small capital purchases (for example, office equipment and furnishings)
  • community engagements
  • workshops and conferences
  • sector research
  • evaluation
  • advocacy
  • costs related to participation in the ECAP
  • other ongoing operating pressures as identified by the applicant

Ineligible expenses

Funding from the ECAP cannot be used for:

  • large capital expenditures
  • expenditures for which other grant dollars have been allocated
  • flow-through funds to another organization
  • retroactive expenses incurred prior to application submission date

How to apply

Step 1: Fill out an application package to determine program eligibility

ECAP Guidelines and application form

Step 2: Submit the application package

The application package can be emailed to [email protected]. If your organization has difficulty submitting an electronic copy, contact us.

Eligible organizations will receive information from program staff regarding the next stages in the application process.

After you apply

If your application is not successful, but your organization meets ECAP eligibility criteria, we encourage you to submit another application for the next intake cycle.

Reporting and conditions

Reporting

Funds must be spent and reporting must be completed and submitted to program staff as required. Reporting requirements must be satisfied as per timelines specified by the program office, unless an extension for a reporting date is approved.

Reporting requirements include:

  • financial reporting, along with measureable evidence of progress towards outcomes (reporting may be shared publicly)
  • an audited financial statement, or a review engagement report, prepared by a certified public accountant licensed to practice in Alberta
  • a summary report that includes a description of the communication opportunities provided for the Government of Alberta

Ongoing funding is dependent upon submission of reporting requirements, including annual financial reporting, and evidence of performance in meeting the objectives identified in the original application.

Reporting templates will be provided to grant recipients as required.

Conditions

Grant recipients must sign a formal grant agreement with the Ministry of Culture and Status of Women that outlines the terms and conditions of the grant funding, prior to funding being released.

Grant recipients are expected to complete organizational assessments during the grant cycle, to reflect on ongoing organizational development. Organizational assessments must be completed as per the timelines specified by the program office, unless an extension for a deadline date is approved.

Representatives of the grant recipient may be required to attend collaborative meetings based on the needs of the program, the grant recipients, and the sector.

For more details, read the ECAP Guidelines.

Multiple applications

Organizations can apply for one capital and one non-capital grant per government fiscal year (April 1 to March 31). Funding through the ECAP is considered non-capital.

  • Non-capital grant requests can be accessed through any of the CIP grant streams (Project-Based, Operating, or Major Cultural and Sport Events).
  • Capital grant requests can be accessed under the Community Facility Enhancement Program (CFEP) and capital equipment grant requests can be accessed through CIP Project-Based.

Contact

Connect with ECAP if you have questions:

Phone: 780-638-3500
Email: [email protected]

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