Canadian non-profits and charities active or interested in stewardship or campaigning around Protected Areas or Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs) are welcome to inquire about small grants to help them be more effective by improving their public engagement practices. This fund was formerly called the “IBA Local Action Fund,” and has been renamed in order to emphasize its focus on public engagement. The Engagement Fund is a joint initiative of Nature Canada and Bird Studies Canada.
Here are the criteria:
- Your organization must be an active or interested in stewardship of an IBA in Canada or actively working towards creating a new protected area in Canada.
- The grant must be directed to transforming your organization with regards to public engagement, leaving it in a new and stronger place. (So, the grant is not for status quo activities, but can be for improving their engagement.)
- The grant can be for one or more elements of good public engagement practices, such as:
- Improving your recruitment practices online and offline and expanding the diversity of people you engage;
- Improving your systems and practices of asking supporters to step up and do more with you;
- Developing new leaders for your organization, such as through training; and
- Better tracking of supporters, such as new data systems or practices. (You can find more ideas in a guide to public engagement available here.)
- The funding may be spent internally to the organization, or else externally on consultants, tech, targeted ads, or other hard costs.
- If the funding is for one specific element, your organization must have an overall framework for public engagement that the element fits into.
- You must be able express how improving your public engagement practices will lead to better conservation outcomes for the IBA(s) you are stewarding or how it will increase the public support for a protected areas campaign that you are working towards.
- Grants will average around $10,000 for a single year term, although select cases may be larger and multi-year.
Nature Canada is happy to help coach through both the application process and implementation of activities. There is no deadline for applications. If you are interested, please fill out the form below and we will be in touch.