NationTalk: Alberta’s government has launched two new grant programs to support community-driven diversity, inclusivity and anti-racism initiatives.
In December 2023, the government separated the Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Grant program into two new programs, an Ethnocultural Grant program and an Anti-Racism Grant program. The separation follows advice from the Alberta Anti-Racism Advisory Council and will better support diversity, inclusion and multicultural efforts. Both grant programs are currently open for applications.
“Our government is committed to building an inclusive province. These new grant programs will help support Alberta’s multicultural, Indigenous and Métis communities’ initiatives that celebrate their contributions to the province and our collective prosperity, as well as help address issues of racism and discrimination to foster a more tolerant and inclusive society.”
Muhammad Yaseen, Minister of Immigration and Multiculturalism
As Alberta’s population becomes increasingly diverse, it is vital for the government to promote the benefits and value of multiculturalism and intercultural connections within Alberta communities while addressing issues of racism and discrimination. The new grant programs help eligible organizations create programming specific to the issues and concerns of their communities.
The Ethnocultural Grant program supports community initiatives that promote Alberta’s multicultural diversity and foster inclusivity, including supporting Indigenous community organizations in celebrating and sharing their rich historical heritage.
The Anti-Racism Grant program is designed to increase awareness of racism, its impact and the challenges faced by racialized groups, and to support community-driven anti-racism initiatives.
“We are a non-profit organization, relying 100 per cent on volunteers. With the support of the grant, we were able to successfully organize the very successful Taste of Igboland event, featuring educational and cultural activities. The grant gave us the opportunity to have a voice, and showcasing our culture gave us a sense of identity.”
Uche Okereafor, president, Igbo Cultural Association of Edmonton in Canada
“The Culture Camp that we host each summer solstice provides us with the opportunities to share our culture through teachings and ceremony with our visitors. Regardless of the ethnicity of our visitors, these four days bring people together in the spirit of treaty. By stepping a foot into our world, we can start to move forward together in good relation with one another.”
Cheryl Whiskeyjack, executive director, Bent Arrow Traditional Healing Society
“As a recipient of the Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Grant, our RACE Inclusify Workshop in October 2023, in partnership with DiversityFirst, USA, was a monumental success. Our participants gained invaluable insights into cross-cultural connections and the challenges faced by Indigenous and racialized groups. This knowledge empowered our attendees with the tools to recognize and actively combat racism in their daily lives. This experience has been a milestone in our journey towards a more inclusive and understanding Alberta, and it’s a testament to the power of collaboration and shared commitment to social progress.”
Patrick Arthur, executive director, Centre for Intellectual Excellence
- Budget 2023 allocated $8 million over three years for the Ethnocultural Grant program and $1.5 million over three years for the Anti-Racism Grant program.
- The Ethnocultural Grant program has two streams:
- Stream 1 is for projects that create opportunities for intercultural connections with ethnocultural and Indigenous groups (funding up to $50,000).
- Stream 2 is for projects that create opportunities to celebrate diversity (funding up to $15,000).
- The Anti-Racism Grant operates two streams with specific program objectives:
- Stream 1 is for projects that promote awareness of racism and the impacts of racism faced by Indigenous and racialized groups. Projects aligning with at least one outcome in either program objective of educating Albertans on the impacts of racism or enabling community organizations to develop their ability to support anti-racism projects are eligible for up to $5,000 in funding.
- Stream 2 supports community organization anti-racism projects. Projects aligning with at least one outcome in both program objectives of educating Albertans on the impacts of racism or enabling community organizations to develop their ability to support anti-racism projects are eligible for up to $10,000 in funding.
- In 2022-23, the Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Grant program provided $3.63 million to 130 community organizations to increase cross-cultural awareness and help prevent and address racism.