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Secrétariat aux affaires autochtones

Community action

A budget of $11 million over five years is earmarked for community action organizations that provide services for an Aboriginal clientele in and outside communities. The funds provide financial support for the overall mission of these organizations. Of this amount, $1.25 million is set aside for Aboriginal women’s organizations and $1 million to help launch Aboriginal community action organizations located in communities. This component is part of the government policy on the recognition and support of community action. The general objectives are to

  • help improve the socio-economic conditions of Aboriginal people,
  • support the introduction of services for Aboriginal people,
  • recognize and promote the work of community organizations that provide services foran Aboriginal clientele, and
  • foster the development of Aboriginal community action organizations located in Québec communities.

A. Financial assistance objectives

The purpose of the Community Action component is to offer financial support for community action organizations that provide services to an Aboriginal clientele in and outside communities and whose overall mission is consistent with the following:

  • Improved living conditions
  • Promotion of healthy life habits
  • Development of Aboriginal cultures and better relations between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people
  • The fight against racism and discrimination
  • Public education and the promotion of citizen  engagement
  • Skills development
  • Collaboration on issues specific to Aboriginal development

B. Eligible organizations

To be eligible, projects must meet the objectives of this component, be submitted to the SAA no later than October 1, 2021, and be completed no later than March 31, 2022.

Outside communities

To be eligible for SAA funding, community action organizations that provide services for a mainly Aboriginal clientele in urban environments must show that their overall mission includes the activities listed in Section A.

Moreover, organizations must also have the following characteristics:

  • Nonprofits
  • Rooted in the Aboriginal environment
  • Associative and democratic
  • Free to determine their mission, approaches, practices, and policies
  • Governed by a board of directors
  • Headquartered in Québec (outside a community or in an urban environment)

Within communities

To be eligible for SAA funding, community action organizations that provide services for a mainly Aboriginal clientele within communities must be in the startup phase 5 and show that their overall mission includes the activities listed in Section A.

Moreover, organizations must also have the following characteristics:

  • Nonprofits
  • Headquartered in an Aboriginal community or northern village
  • Associative and democratic
  • Free to determine their mission, approaches, practices, and policies
  • Governed by a board of directors independent of the band or municipal council
  • Their overall mission must pay specific heed to the Aboriginal community

C. Submitting applications

All applicants must provide the following information:

  • Proof of legal status
  • A board of directors resolution supporting the application for funding
  • A description of the organization’s overall mission, including
    • the target population;
    • the needs met by the organization and the resources used;
    • the scope of the mission, the number of employees, and a description of their roles and job categories;
    • an annual or multiyear, as applicable, plan of activities to achieve the mission; and
    • the expected outcomes.
  • A financing arrangement showing
    • financial need, and
    • the expected sources of funds.
  • A detailed annual or multiyear budget for achieving the mission
  • Bylaws and letters patent
  • Most recent financial and activity reports, if the organization is currently operating

D. Application assessment criteria

When reviewing applications, the SAA checks that the organization has submitted a complete package as specified in Section C. Financial assistance applications are assessed according to a number of criteria, such as

  • compliance with the component’s objectives and eligibility rules;
  • the suitability and quality of the organization’s action plan relative to its mission;
  • the size of the organization, territory covered, and scope of its mission;
  • the remoteness factor and the cost of living;
  • the organization’s management capability and the appropriateness of the organizational structure;
  • the organization’s interaction in its environment and the diversification of its financing sources; and
  • the organization’s financial situation, including its debt ratio and unrestricted net assets.

As necessary, applications may be sent to the relevant ministries and government agencies for review in terms of suitability, feasibility, and funding.

E. Eligible expenses

Eligible expenditures includes

  • employee costs associated with the organization’s basic operation,
  • costs associated with achieving the organization’s overall mission,
  • costs associated with preparing and producing financial documents and other reports required to comply with the financial agreement signed with the SAA,
  • eligible general costs associated with
    • use of a building,
    • office equipment,
    • technology infrastructure,
    • infrastructure upkeep,
    • other expenses deemed reasonable,*
    • equipment deemed a priority.*

* The SAA must approve these costs in advance.

F. Ineligible expenses

Expenditures to erase an existing deficit and expenditures on the purchase and renovation of buildings and spaces are not eligible. Land purchases are not eligible.

G. How financial assistance is determined

The financial assistance granted will be in the form of a non-repayable contribution to support the organization in achieving its overall mission.

H. Tracking and reporting

Grants are to be formalized in a financial agreement not to exceed five government fiscal years. The agreement must include

  • the obligations of the signatories, and
  • a detailed description of the project and the objectives relevant to the funding.

Each organization must provide, at a minimum, an annual report in accordance with the provisions in the financial agreement. The document must include

  • a full report on all activities carried out, and
  • a description of the results achieved in relation to the objectives.

It must be accompanied by the organization’s financial statements and a financial report documenting how the funds were used. These reports must specify, in detail, the source and amount of each grant received from public funds.

  • If the annual total of SAA grants is less than $60,000, the financial statements can be prepared by the organization and adopted by a board of directors resolution.
  • If the annual total of SAA grants is between $60,000 and $100,000, the financial statements must, at a minimum, be in the form of a “review engagement” and the “review engagement report” must be prepared by a professional accountant.
  • If the annual total of SAA grants is more than $100,000, the financial statements must be in the form of an “audit engagement” and the “independent auditor’s report” must be verified by a chartered professional accountant.

The organization must at all times keep separate accounts for expenditures associated with achieving its general mission, in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.

The agreement also sets out the payment conditions for the funds and the parties’ obligations.

I. Temporary transition measure 2017-2018

The SAA is implementing a temporary measure to provide a transition period for organizations that received financial support in 2016-2017 under AIF II and are still eligible for funds in 2017-2018 under AIF III.

An advance can be paid out after an initial review to confirm the applicant’s eligibility and check that the application for funds is complete, as specified in Section C.

5. A community action organization created under AIF III is deemed to be “in the startup phase” for the duration of the program.

Signature gouvernementale
Secrétariat aux affaires autochtones
905, avenue Honoré-Mercier, 1er étage - Québec (Qc)  G1R 5M6 - 418 643-3166
Online as of: July 4, 2017