The Government of Canada is committed to better supporting LGBTQ2 individuals in Canada and building a society where everyone has equal rights and opportunities to be their true, authentic selves. Along with LGBTQ2 communities across Canada, we are working to strengthen LGBTQ2 organizations and support the critical work they do to create an equitable and consciously more inclusive Canada. That’s why Budget 2019 allocated funding for the first ever Government of Canada fund for LGBTQ2 organizations.
Today, the Honourable Bardish Chagger, Minister of Diversity and Inclusion and Youth, along with the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development, announced approximately $15 million in funding for 76 LGBTQ2 community-led projects across Canada through the LGBTQ2 Community Capacity Fund.
Examples of these projects whose initiatives help strengthen LGBTQ2 communities and advance equity for LGBTQ2 people in Canada are:
- Nurturing Wabanaki 2SLGBTQ+ Capacity through Indigenous-led, Cross-sectoral, Inter-Provincial Network Partnerships, led by the Wabanaki Two-Spirit Alliance, to extend their supports for Two-Spirits in the Atlantic region;
- Enhancing Arrival Communities for LGBTQI Refugees in BC, led by the Rainbow Refugee Society, to strengthen partnerships for LGBTQI refugee housing collaboration;
- LGBT YouthLine’s Capacity Building Project, led by the Lesbian Gay Bi Trans Youth Line in Toronto, to build capacity, strengthen partnerships, and develop regional collaborative networks;
- Towards a general assembly for the trans community in Quebec, led by Gender Euphoria – Trans Pride, to strengthen their capacity and establish a network of trans organizations in Quebec.
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all Canadians and disproportionately certain segments of the population, including LGBTQ2 communities. Through the LGBTQ2 Community Capacity Fund, the Government of Canada acknowledges that the work of these organizations is critical for improving social, health, and economic outcomes in LGBTQ2 communities, and that it merits targeted investments to ensure the renewal and sustainability of the sector, especially during these challenging times. See the full list of supported organizations.
“The LGBTQ2 Community Capacity Fund helps advance equity for LGBTQ2 individuals in Canada by supporting the network of organizations across the country to build new tools, enhance collaboration, and strengthen organizational development at the local level. The Government of Canada is committed to working with and for all LGBTQ2 individuals in collaboration with community-led organizations to combat all forms of discrimination. Together we can build back an even better and consciously more inclusive Canada where everyone can be their true, authentic self.”
—The Honourable Bardish Chagger, Minister of Diversity and Inclusion and Youth
“LGBTQ2 organizations from coast to coast to coast offer key services and do important work to create a more equal Canada, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has exacerbated inequalities and created additional challenges for LGTBQ2 individuals. Today’s announcement, the result of first-ever federal fund specifically dedicated to LGBTQ2 equality, will help LGBTQ2 organizations strengthen their operations, increase partnerships, share knowledge, and build stronger networks to support LGBTQ2 communities across Canada. Since 2015, WAGE has provided over $14 million in direct support to 64 LGBTQ2 organizations across the country to help support their vital work. We know there is a lot more work to do and we are proud to work together with them to help ensure an inclusive future and opportunities for everyone—regardless of who they love or how they identify—so that all Canadians have an equal and fair chance at success.”
—The Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development
“Well before COVID-19, we recognized that LGBTQ2 community organizations across the country, while resilient, needed a boost to strengthen their operations, renew and enhance their tools, and build new collaborations with other like-minded organizations. Funding is a big part of the solution, and we brought this to these community organizations through the LGBTQ2 Community Capacity Fund.”
—Adam van Koeverden, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Diversity and Inclusion and Youth and to the Minister of Canadian Heritage (Sport)
“The Community Capacity Fund is a game changer for the Wabanaki Two-Spirit Alliance because it provides much-needed resources to consolidate as the regional organization for Two-Spirits. As a result, the Alliance can properly advocate, deliver knowledge-sharing programs, and expand its partnerships with its sister 2SLGBTQQIA+ organizations and service providers to extend their supports for Two-Spirits in the Atlantic region.”
—John R. Sylliboy, Interim Executive Director, Wabanaki Two-Spirit Alliance
“Rainbow Refugee and our partners in the Rainbow Coalition for Refuge form a critical safety net for refugees who have escaped sex- and gender-based persecution. The LGBTQ2 Community Capacity Fund strengthens our organizations’ foundations, and helps us grow a more robust solidarity and support network. This investment in LGBTQ2 civil society signals a new level of commitment by Canadian government to realize equity and rights. This commitment needs to continue and grow until all members of our communities can live with safety, belonging and respect.ˮ
— Dr. Sharalyn Jordan, Chair, Rainbow Refugee Society
“With this fund, YouthLine will upgrade its internal structures to train and support more peer support volunteers to meet the increased demand for our HelpLine. We will also expand our provincial presence and reach through regional networks as well as better understand and meet the needs of 2SLGBTQ+ youth in rural and Northern Ontario who often have little to no supports.”
— Berkha Gupta, Executive Director, Lesbian Gay Bi Trans Youth Line
“Trans people have been sidelined for far too long. These funds will finally make it possible to put trans people in the foreground and meet the glaring needs for consultation and the sharing of trans knowledge and expertise. Gender Euphoria will launch a broad consultation of trans people to take stock of the needs and concerns of trans communities.”
— Maxime Faddoul, Coordinator, Gender Euphoria – Trans Pride
- The call for proposals under the LGBTQ2 Community Capacity Fund began on March 5, 2020, and concluded on May 14, 2020.
- As part of the COVID-19 response, the Government of Canada is investing $350 million in the Emergency Community Support Fund to support charities and non-profit organizations requiring financial assistance to address the pandemic.
- In addition to the $20 million investment in Budget 2019 to support capacity building and community-level work of Canadian LGBTQ2 organizations, the Government of Canada has also made the following investments:
- Global Affairs Canada has announced more than $30 million to improve socioeconomic outcomes for LGBTQ2 people in developing countries;
- The Federal Tourism Growth Strategy includes major investments in Pride events across Canada;
- Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has announced increased support for LGBTQI refugees fleeing violence and persecution through the Rainbow Refugee Assistance Partnership;
Canadian Heritage has set aside $2 million over two years under the Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage program for Pride and LGBTQ2 events.
- On November 27, 2020, the Government of Canada launched a national LGBTQ2 survey and engagement on Canada’s first ever LGBTQ2 Action Plan to advance equity and improve the lives of LGBTQ2 people in Canada.
Recipients in British Columbia:
Organization: Fernie Pride Society
Title: Strengthening Community Capacity in the Elk Valley
Description: This project will strengthen the capacity of Fernie Pride Society to advance LGBTQ2 equality by increasing evidence and knowledge of LGBTQ2 challenges and barriers, Advocacy planning, partnership development, collaboration and networking.
Region: Fernie, British Columbia
Funding amount: $57,139
Organization: Essies Place- a Society for people with diverse genders and sexualities
Title: To “start capacity” by learning about the LGBTQ2 Community
Description: This project will strengthen the capacity and networks of Essies Place to advance LGBTQ2 equality by increasing evidence and knowledge of LGBTQ2 challenges and barriers; partnership development, collaboration, networking; supporting the ability to create opportunities for members of LGBTQ2 communities to gather, connect, network, share knowledge, and exist safely in a collaborative space.
Region: Sicamous, British Columbia
Funding amount: $100,000
Organization: Four Feathers Society
Title: 2 Spirits of BC Capacity Building Project
Description: This project will strengthen the capacity and networks of Four Feathers Society to advance LGBTQ2 equality by building board capacity; strengthening collaboration among organizations; improving financial sustainability; increasing access to evidence, data, information, and knowledge sources; and amplifying sector capacity at large in order to better support 2-Spirit persons in BC.
Region: Vancouver, British Columbia
Funding amount: $129,797
Organization: QMUNITY, BC’s Queer, Trans and Two-Spirit Resource Centre
Title: Building QMUNITY: Reinforcing Foundations, Reimagining Futures
Description: This project will strengthen the capacity and networks of QMUNITY, BC’s Queer, Trans and Two-Spirit Resource Centre to advance LGBTQ2 equality by building managerial capacity; increasing access to evaluation data, knowledge sources and social impact monitoring; and strengthening collaboration among organizations while amplifying sector capacity at large.
Region: Vancouver, British Columbia
Funding amount: $299,775
Organization: Rainbow Refugee Society
Title: Enhancing Arrival Communities for LGBTQI Refugees in BC
Description: This project will strengthen the capacity and networks of Rainbow Refugee Society to advance LGBTQ2 equality by building managerial capacity through governance, organizational and strategic planning, human resources, communications plan, and IT systems; enhancing the organization’s capacity to provide training across BC through skills development and a regional community of practice to strengthen partnerships for LGBTQI refugee housing collaboration.
Region: Vancouver, British Columbia
Funding amount: $248,505
Organization: Canadian Professional Association for Transgender Health
Details to follow