Funding applications open to non-profits meeting critical social needs and supporting renters

October 6 2020 –

We're now accepting applications to two grants streams aimed at providing funding for non-profit organizations doing vital work to support Vancouver residents.

The Social Policy and Renter Services funding programs will provide grants to help non-profits address priority issues that people in Vancouver are facing including childcare, inequity, and security of rental housing.

For decades, our Social Policy grants have supported non-profit organizations that are providing vital social services to people who need them, including helping to expand access to childcare across the city, promoting food security, and fostering initiatives to create a more age-friendly city. 

The Renter Services grants program is a newer initiative. This will be the second year that we're seeking funding applications from non-profit organizations that are empowering Vancouver renters to understand their legal rights as renters, pursue these rights, and stabilize their housing. 

Four types of Social Policy grants currently available

Direct Social Services Grants

For non-profit organizations that are working to address specific social conditions and issues and bring about positive social change, particularly for individuals and groups who are experiencing social, physical, and/or economic disadvantage. 

  • Total grants awarded in 2020: $4,132,515
  • Applications close for 2021 grant: October 16, 2020

Find more information on how to apply

Organizational Capacity Building Grants

For non-profit organizations whose purpose and mandate is to support other non-profit agencies to improve their ability to deliver social services, address social issues and navigate change.

  • Total grants awarded in 2020: $539,627
  • Applications close for 2021 grants: October 16, 2020

Find more information on how to apply

Childcare Enhancement Grants

For non-profit licensed, group child care, preschool, school-aged care, and occasional child care programs that serve primary high need families. Grants are intended to support the quality and affordability of licensed programs to ensure access to those families most in need of the support.

  • Total grants awarded in 2020: $995,663
  • Applications close for 2021 grants: November 13, 2020

Find more information on how to apply

Indigenous Healing and Wellness Grants

For projects that provide traditional, spiritual, and cultural healing and wellness activities in Vancouver's urban Indigenous community.

  • Total grants awarded in 2020: $180,000
  • Applications close for 2021 grants: November 27, 2020

Find more information on how to apply

Renter Services Grants

Intended to augment and enhance an organization’s capacity to support and advocate for Vancouver renters, and aim to address three main priorities and outcomes for renters in Vancouver: 

  • Renters understand their rights: renters know and understand their rights and what impacts them as renters under municipal and provincial jurisdiction
  • Renters pursue their rights: renters assert and pursue their legal rights as renters
  • Renters have security of housing: renters who face barriers to maintaining their tenancies are supported to remain housed or find alternative affordable rental housing. 
  • Total grants awarded in 2020: $625,000 
  • Application close for 2021 Renter Services grant: October 23, 2020

Find more information on how to apply

Past grant recipients

Over the years, City grants have funded a diverse range of programs that are having a positive impact on the community. For example, the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society received a Social Policy grant last year for their Aboriginal-Home-Instruction-for-Parents-of-Preschool-Youngsters (A+HIPPY) and Aboriginal-Supporting-Mothers-And-Raising-Toddlers (A+SMART) programs. These programs support Indigenous families with young children to build strong education foundations by utilizing parents as the primary teachers of their preschool-age children, and building community through peer supports. 

Earlier this year, Disability Alliance BC received a Renter Services grant for their Right Fit Project which is designed to address the crisis in wheelchair accessible housing by helping people with disabilities find affordable, accessible homes and independent living supports. The team of “project navigators” works directly with clients to provide peer support throughout the housing process, ensures compliance with the DABC’s Wheelchair Accessibility Checklist and streamlines access to government and health support. The Right Fit Project team has helped match 25 cases to date, including eight individuals and 17 families to secure housing with the necessary supports to live independently.

These Social Policy and Renter Services Grants help to advance work toward the city’s well-being, aligning with the Healthy City Strategy, the Housing Vancouver Strategy, the City’s social sustainability framework, and related initiatives including Reconciliation and the Women’s Equity Strategy

Find more information about the 2020 Social Policy Grant recipients (1 MB), and read about the 2020 Renter Services Grant recipients


Sandra Singh, General Manager of Arts, Culture, and Community Services

“Vancouver’s non-profit sector is an essential partner in helping the City address priorities related to the impacts of social and economic status, racism, and other forms of exclusion on Vancouver residents”, said Sandra Singh, General Manager of Arts, Culture, and Community Services at the City of Vancouver. 

“COVID-19 has further exacerbated the challenges faced by marginalized residents and non-profits have worked tirelessly to provide support to people who are facing issues such as increased social isolation, loss of income, housing instability and additional physical and mental health concerns. Every year we fund projects that make a significant difference within the community, but this year the funding and programs they fund are needed more than ever”, Singh added.

Osiris Lopez, the HIPPY program coordinator for Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society

“Due to systemic barriers and lack of basic need such as safe secure housing, many families we serve have limited time and no access to learning techniques or materials needed to foster healthy child development around Aboriginal culture and language,” said Osiris Lopez, the HIPPY program coordinator for Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society. “Funding of this new program allows us to support healthy development in Indigenous children through strengthening skills, providing a safe, culturally appropriate place for this community of parents during their children’s early years.”