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IMPORTANT: As of Thursday May 21, 2020 granting from the Pandemic Response Fund is paused while the Foundation flows funds from the Government of Canada’s Emergency Community Support Fund. The Pandemic Response Fund will re-open for applications after ECSF granting is completed.

If your application is in process within the BBGM system and has not yet been submitted to HCF, we encourage you to cancel your application and submit an application through the ECSF process. If you still choose to submit to HCF, please ensure that it is completed and submitted by 9 a.m. on Thursday May 21, 2020 for consideration.

To apply for funding from the Emergency Community Support Fund please click here.

NOTE: Following are the criteria for HCF’s Pandemic Response Fund which will resume granting in July 2020.

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COVID-19 has placed each of us, our families and our city into a situation unlike any other in recent memory. In this rapidly changing and unpredictable landscape, Hamilton Community Foundation has established the Pandemic Response Fund. The fund supports charitable organizations across the city as they respond to the impact of COVID-19.

HCF is committed to listening and learning throughout the ever-changing nature of the pandemic. We will respond with granting that evolves to meet the needs of front-line organizations and those they serve, and to support gaps not covered by municipal, provincial or federal relief funding. HCF is committed to working with other funding partners and community collaborators to move resources quickly.

The Pandemic Response Fund addresses both the emergency needs of Hamiltonians today, and their emerging needs over the next weeks and months in what will no doubt be a long and difficult recovery. The fund includes three streams of support. 

Beginning April 8, 2020, we are accepting applications for the first two streams from organizations serving vulnerable populations during this time of crisis. This grant program will remain open throughout the length of the pandemic. Applications will be reviewed as they are received and granting decisions will be made as quickly as possible. Applications for the third (Recovery/Rebuilding) stream will be accepted at a date to be determined.

Please note: We recognize need in our community is great and expect that the demands on this fund will surpass our resources. Not all applications will be funded, despite their merit. HCF will work to prioritize needs to maximize the impact of this fund on the community.

Stream One – Meeting Basic Needs (Short-term)

To date, HCF has provided emergency funding to 16 organizations to immediately address critical needs for vulnerable populations.  We also recognize that these grants do not address all the needs or all the organizations providing critical services.  Therefore, we invite applications for funding to provide basic needs related to food security, shelter, hygiene, and others.

Stream Two – Stabilization (Short- to medium-term)

This funding is to support charities working on the frontlines delivering critical services to vulnerable populations affected by quarantine, closures, shortages, access to services, loss of income, or affected by other economic factors. It is designed to maintain or expand local capacity to address all aspects of the outbreak as efficiently as possible within the context of supporting gaps not covered by municipal, provincial or federal relief funding.

Stream Three – Recovery/Rebuilding (Medium- to long-term)

New developments arise daily and it is clear that recovery from this crisis will extend for months beyond the immediate phase. This funding will enable the Foundation to continue to be flexible and responsive to the evolving needs arising from the pandemic, with the goal of strengthening Hamilton’s long-term resiliency. Details on applying to this stream will be posted on our website when they become available.

General funding criteria

  • Applicants must be registered charities or non-profits with a fiscal sponsorship arrangement with a registered charity (additional information on fiscal sponsorships is available on our website)
  • All initiatives must be directly related to critical needs as result of the pandemic
  • All initiatives must be carried out in Hamilton
  • Foundation funds are not intended to fund initiatives that can be funded through government COVID-19 relief funding
  • Grants will not be made to promote political, religious, moral or ethical philosophies or for purposes which may be deemed discriminatory

Complete and submit the online grant application **Use Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox or Apple Safari to open the application**

Don’t forget to check out these frequently asked questions which you may find helpful in completing your application