City seeking applications for 2021 Social Planning Grants

New for 2021 – additional funding for community wellness and substance response


Beginning November 3, 2020, the City of Nanaimo will be accepting applications for the 2021 Social Planning Grant Program. The program aims to assist organizations in responding to issues of a social nature with initiatives that enhance social cohesion, address the root causes and effects of poverty, contribute to the vitality of our community and foster social inclusion and social equity. The deadline for submitting applications is 4:00 p.m. on Monday, December 7, 2020.

In the past, the City has allocated a total of $85,000 available under two grant categories: Community Vitality Grants ($25,000 available) and Social Response Grants ($60,000 available). For 2021 only, $30,000 of extra funding dedicated to programs that specifically address community wellness or substance use response is being added to the Social Response Grants. Programs eligible for this funding may include detox and treatment programs, counselling and support, peer support and employment programs, harm reduction and/or overdoes prevention. The total amount of Social Planning Grant funds available for 2021 only is $115,000:

  • Community Vitality Grants (for smaller projects): $25,000
  • Social Response Grants (for larger projects): $90,000 Note: $30,000 for community wellness/substance use response only.

All applications should address one or more of the following priorities: Social Equity; Community Diversity; Community Wellness and Vibrant Neighbourhoods. Social Response Grant projects that specifically address community wellness or substance use response may be eligible for up to $90,000 in funding. Programs that address other social priorities may be eligible for up to $60,000 in funding.

Organizations that apply for funding must be based in Nanaimo and/or be proposing a project that primarily serves Nanaimo residents. Eligible organizations include non-profit societies, recognized religious groups and neighbourhood associations recognized by the City of Nanaimo.

More details regarding the 2021 Social Planning Grants are provided in the Grant Guidelines and Criteria and application forms available on the City of Nanaimo’s website. The deadline for submitting applications is 4:00 p.m., on Monday, December 7, 2020. .

Link to Strategic Plan: Promoting the community value of Social Equity by reducing the effects of poverty overall, increasing citizen safety and nurturing health and inclusivity.

Key Points

  • The City of Nanaimo is now accepting applications for the 2021 Social Planning Grants, with a deadline of Monday, December 7, 2020 (4:00 PM)
  • An additional $30,000 in Social Response grant funding is available for community wellness and substance use response programs.
  • The Social Planning Grants are an important part of the support that the City provides to our partners in addressing issues related to social equity and community well-being.


"The City is pleased to provide grants to assist local organizations in supporting our own citizens who face challenges. The additional community wellness funding, will provide assistance to those responding to the opioid crisis locally"

City of Nanaimo

Quick Facts

  • Past projects that have received grant funding have addressed issues such as homelessness, literacy and education, accessibility, child poverty, and social inclusion.
  • The additional $30,000 in grant money for community wellness and substance use response was made available through community amenity contributions from three separate cannabis retail store rezoning applications.


Dave Stewart
Social Planner
City of Nanaimo
Lisa Bhopalsingh
Manager, Community Planning
City of Nanaimo

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