Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Initiative?
The Indigenous Homes Innovation Initiative supports ideas that can lead to better homes or living spaces for Indigenous communities. The Initiative funds both the development of innovative ideas and the implementation of projects led by Indigenous individuals, organizations, businesses and communities. The Initiative is designed to work alongside and support other public, private, non-profit and community-led efforts to improve housing for Indigenous peoples.
What does the Initiative hope to achieve?
- We hope the Initiative will deliver social and economic benefits to Indigenous communities (e.g. safer spaces in transitional or temporary situations)
- take a collaborative approach by establishing new partnerships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities and organizations, including private and not-for-profit sectors
- implement various sizes and types of projects in a range of communities—large and small, on and off reserve, remote and urban—across the country
- share lessons learned from implemented projects
What makes someone an innovator in Indigenous housing?
An innovator is someone with new ideas, designs or building techniques for effective, sustainable or culturally inspired living spaces for Indigenous peoples.
Is being an innovator the only requirement to participate in the Initiative?
No. To be eligible, innovators must be:
- an individual of First Nation, Inuit or Métis Nation heritage; OR
- an Indigenous representative of a First Nation, Inuit or Métis Nation government; OR
- an Indigenous representative of a First Nation-, Inuit- or Métis Nation-owned and operated private or not-for-profit entity.
One or more individuals of First Nation, Inuit or Métis Nation heritage, representatives of First Nation, Inuit or Métis Nation governments or Indigenous representative of First Nation, Inuit or Métis Nation owned or operated private or not-for-profit entities may partner on an application.
What types of ideas are eligible?
Your housing idea must meet three requirements:
- It must fall under one of six focus areas:
- Traditional First Nation, Inuit or Métis Nation building styles and techniques
- Using the home for empowerment, capacity building and support for local businesses
- Support for vulnerable populations
- Culturally-inspired urban spaces for First Nation, Inuit and Métis Nation people
- Safety, security, and accessibility
- Energy independence and efficiency
- It must be innovative by introducing new ideas, designs, or building techniques for effective, sustainable or culturally inspired living spaces for Indigenous peoples.
- It must be led by a First Nations, Inuit or Métis Nation applicant:
- On or off reserve
- In a rural, urban or remote area
- In any region of the country
- It must fall under one of six focus areas:
Who will evaluate ideas?
An Indigenous Steering Committee leads the Initiative with the support of the Government of Canada. The Committee will review and evaluate all eligible ideas.
Who are the members of the Indigenous Steering Committee?
The Committee is composed of prominent Indigenous individuals from across Canada. They have been thoughtfully selected for their expertise and experience (See Indigenous Steering Committee Tab on this webpage or Annex B of the Applicant’s Guide for more detail).
How do you apply?
You can complete and submit your application on the Impact Canada Challenge Platform https://impact.canada.ca/en/challenges/indigenous-homes.
Alternatively, you may print, complete and send your application form by courier to our mailing address:
Indigenous Homes Innovation Initiative Secretariat
10 rue Wellington, Suite 2513
Gatineau, QC K1A 0H4
The deadline for applications is August 1, 2019 (11:59 p.m., P.S.T.).
Why should you apply to the Initiative?
The Initiative is a unique opportunity to access financial and technical support to develop and implement an innovative housing or living space idea in your community. It is also intended to provide professional development opportunities for the lead applicant.
What funding is available?
If you are selected to participate in the Accelerator, you will receive funding and support services worth up to $350,000. The Indigenous Steering Committee will determine exact amounts based on the size, complexity and level of development of your idea.
If you successfully complete the Accelerator and the Indigenous Steering Committee selects your project for implementation, you will receive up to $2 million for construction. The Indigenous Steering Committee will determine exact amounts based on the size and complexity of your idea.
What is the timeline of the Initiative?
You can review the timeline here: https://impact.canada.ca/en/challenges/indigenous-homes-draft/process
What happens if your idea gets selected?
The Initiative has four stages:
First-stage Screening and Evaluation
Indigenous Services Canada will screen all applications for basic eligibility and forward those that are eligible to the Indigenous Steering Committee. The Committee will review, evaluate and recommend up to 24 Indigenous innovators to the Minister of Indigenous Services for Accelerator participation.
The Committee will consider five criteria (See Annex A of the Applicant’s Guide for more detail):
- Project idea and purpose
- Project innovation
- Project sustainability
- Local empowerment and capacity building (during the construction process)
- Community engagement
During the Accelerator period, up to 24 Indigenous innovators will spend up to 18 months working with experts on refining their ideas. The Indigenous Steering Committee will determine the exact level of support based on the size, complexity and level of development of the innovators’ ideas.
Each innovator will receive funding and support services up to $350,000, which includes:
- A bursary so the innovator can focus their time on their idea;
- Guidance and advice from experts in business, social services, design, construction and law;
- Costs for workspace and for travel to meetings and community visits; and
- Support of an Indigenous mentor to guide the innovator as they refine their idea.
The Accelerator will also help innovators find additional funds and partners to support their ideas.
Innovators that successfully complete the Accelerator period and develop their ideas into fully implementable proposals will move to the second-stage screening.
Second-stage Screening and Project Implementation Period
The Indigenous Steering Committee will review and evaluate fully developed proposals that successfully complete the Accelerator. The Committee will select 15 to 24 projects and allocate up to $2 million to each innovation project. The Committee will determine the exact number of projects and the exact amount of funding based on the size, complexity and their potential to achieve the goals of the Initiative.
The innovators will receive funding through contribution agreements with Indigenous Services Canada.
Lessons Learned and Knowledge Sharing
The Initiative is an opportunity to gather and analyze new approaches and share lessons learned with Indigenous communities across Canada.
Throughout the Initiative, the Indigenous Steering Committee and Indigenous Services Canada will seek to identify information that can foster the success of future projects related to Indigenous homes.
Once funded projects are implemented, the innovators will receive additional funding to review their projects and share lessons learned with Indigenous communities and others across Canada.