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Tourism Relief Fund (TRF) in Western Canada – Applicant guide

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Table of contents

 


Preparation

Prior to beginning your application, please review the guidelines for this program to ensure your organization is eligible to apply for funding, and your proposed activities meet the program’s objectives and criteria.

General information

This applicant guide provides information to assist applicants complete and submit an application for financial assistance under the Tourism Relief Fund. Applicants should read this applicant guide in its entirety before starting an application. It is the responsibility of the applicant to complete all required sections of the application form as accurately and as completely as possible and to include all required information outlined in this guide. Failure to do so may preclude WD from considering the application.

If you have any additional questions, please contact the nearest WD office.

About the Tourism Relief Fund (TRF)

The Tourism Relief Fund supports tourism businesses and organizations adapt their operations to meet public health requirements while investing in products and services to facilitate their future growth. The TRF provides $500 million over two years (2021-2022 and 2022-2023) to position Canada to be a destination of choice when domestic and international travel is once again safe by:

Indigenous tourism projects are important to Canada’s economic recovery efforts and a priority under the TRF. Under the Fund, $50 million will specifically support Indigenous tourism initiatives.

Eligible recipients

Applicants must fall under one of the following categories to be eligible for funding:

1) A key supplier/operator in the visitor experience

A key supplier/operator in the visitor experience is one that provides the infrastructure and services necessary to support a tourism economy, connects tourism product to potential markets, leads planning for sustainable destination development and supports capacity building/skill development in the sector, etc.

2) Part of a defined tourism cluster

A tourism cluster is a geographic concentration of businesses and organizations involved in tourism, linked by common and complementary products and services that are tailored for the visitor economy and supported by a network of services and associated institutions. A tourism cluster can include- but is not limited to- a community or region that is dependent on tourism for economic activity or is transitioning towards a more tourism-focused local economy.

3) An anchor product in a destination

An anchor product in a destination is defined as a key asset that serves as a motivator of travel to the region. It is the activity or product that provides the catalyst for the visitor to visit the destination. Anchor products may be operated by for-profit or not-for-profit organizations.

Note: You may fit under more than one of these categories and will have the opportunity to explain how under the project activities area.

Eligible applicants need to be part of the tourism ecosystem and will include tourism entities that cater mainly to visitors (not including local residents). The following eligible applicants include:

Ineligible recipients

Businesses that are in the following industries are normally not eligible under this initiative:

Note: In exceptional cases, restaurants and Canadian-owned hotels may be considered for funding if they are an anchor product and the main reason for attracting tourists to the region. These will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Additional information

Eligible activities

Eligible projects will fall under one of two themes:

Product development/Development and enhancement of tourism experiences to help tourism businesses adapt to the ‘new normal’, to modernize tourism offerings and to help the sector adopt more environmentally sustainable practices. Some examples of project activities may include, but are not limited to the following:

Destination development to support projects that would position communities to take advantage of post-pandemic opportunities through strategic planning for medium to long-term investments, as well as supporting destination development, in-line with objectives set out in the Federal Tourism Growth Strategy. Some examples of project activities may include, but are not limited to the following:

Priorities

Priority consideration will be given to projects that:

Funding available

For all projects:

For for-profit businesses:

Contributions to businesses will be either:

A business cannot receive a combination of a non-repayable and a repayable contribution for the same project.

Businesses must indicate their request for either a non-repayable or a fully repayable contribution when describing the project in the project description area of the application form and the project cost area when indicating how much support will be requested.

Contributions to non-profit organizations/Indigenous entities (not generating profits) will normally be non-repayable.

Completing the form

Refer to the guidance below for explanations of how to complete the application form. Once you have submitted the form, a PDF summary of your application can be accessed by clicking on ‘Documents and details’ in the drop down menu to the right of the submitted application tab.

Note: Incomplete applications, with missing mandatory information or documentation, will not be assessed and will be considered ineligible for funding.

Organization information

Legal name of applicant organization*

The legal name as shown on the certificate of incorporation or registration.

Operating name (if different than legal name)

Provide the name you are operating under if different from the full legal name.

Mailing address (including suite, unit, apt #)

The mailing address of the applicant organization.

Website

Your organization’s website address (if available).

Email address

Include the general email address of your organization.

Indigenous organization

Indicate if your organization is First Nation, Métis or Inuit (if applicable).

Corporate status*

Indicate if your organization is a for-profit or not-for-profit.

Organization type (select best fit)*

Select from the drop down menu what most accurately reflects your organization type.

Provide your Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) business number or Goods and Services Tax (GST) number (first 9 digits only)

The unique business number or GST number assigned to the applicant organization by the CRA. A business number or GST number must be obtained through the CRA. For information on obtaining a business number visit the CRA’s Business Number Registration page.

Incorporation number

As shown on your Certification of Incorporation. If you do not have an Incorporation number, please provide the following under the ‘Alternative number’ field:

  • Registered charity or non-profit: charitable registration number
  • First Nations Community: band number
  • Any other organizations: enter “n/a”
Date of incorporation

Indicate the date the organization was incorporated.

Jurisdiction of incorporation*

Select from the drop down menu your organization’s jurisdiction (Federal/Foreign/Not Incorporated/Provincial) of incorporation.

In the province of

Indicate in which province the organization was incorporated.

Alternative number

If you have identified that you do have an alternative number, indicate the unique number.

Alternative number type

Enter if you do not have a CRA Business Number or Incorporation Number, so your organization can be identified (e.g. band number, education number).

Number of employees working for your organization (full time equivalents)

Indicate the current number of Full-Time Equivalent employees (FTEs) working for your organization (and if applicable, any affiliated companies). Part-time employees should be calculated based on their equivalent to a FTE (i.e., one part time employee working approx. 20 hours/week should be represented as 0.5 FTE).

Provide a brief description and summary of your organization (maximum of 500 characters)

The description of the applicant organization and an explanation of the organization’s mandate and priorities.

Include the date your organization established business in Canada.

Project information

Project primary contact

This person will be the individual who has legal signing authority and will ultimately sign the Contribution Agreement on behalf of your organization.

Title

Provide the contact person’s job title (e.g., President, Executive Director).

Email address*

The email at which the primary contact may be reached.

Project secondary contact

This person is an administrative or project contact that could be contacted regarding the application.

Title

Provide the contact person’s job title (e.g., President, Executive Director).

Email address*

The email at which the secondary contact may be reached.

Project information

Project title (maximum of 90 characters)*

Provide a project title that accurately reflects the activities and results of the project. Should your project be approved, this description may be disclosed on WD’s public website as part of its proactive disclosure guidelines. A project title can be a maximum of 90 characters including spaces.

Project address is the same as mailing address on the account? (Yes / No)

Select “Yes” if the address at which the project will be undertaken is the same as the organization’s mailing address. If checked, the mailing address will be automatically entered.

Project address / location (including suite, unit, apt #):*

If the project address is different from the mailing address, enter the location at which the project will take place.

Briefly describe your project activities in plain language. This is an important section as it will be used in summary documents to describe your project at various review stages. (maximum of 1,000 characters including spaces)*

Briefly describe your project in plain language. This is important as this section will be used in summary documents to describe your project at various review stages. The description should provide a high-level overview of the project and outline the main activities of the project. Ensure you include the following elements:

  • how this project aligns with the criteria of the program and any activities that are required as a result of new public health protocols
  • an understanding of how you will use the funds to meet the objectives of your project to support tourism, particularly in your community
  • whether you are requesting a non-repayable or repayable contribution

Include a description of your organization’s role in the tourism sector and how your organization primarily caters to tourists.  From the three options listed below, select the option(s) that most accurately applies to your organization. You must identify at least one option and explain your selection(s).

  • be a key supplier or operator in the visitor experience
  • be part of a defined tourism cluster
  • provide an anchor product or service in a destination

Indicate if your project will support Indigenous tourism or if the applicant is led or majority led by Indigenous peoples, and where applicable, explain how the project will support Indigenous tourism.

Note: you will have an opportunity to expand on this description later in the application (under ‘Additional details’) if needed.

Briefly describe the economic benefits associated with this project. (maximum of 1,000 characters including spaces)*

Provide numerical values measured year over year from the project funding start date typically to one year following the project completion date.

As an example: Through this project, it is anticipated that visitors will increase from 10,000 people annually to 20,000 people annually. Based on previous economic impact surveys, we have identified that each visitor to the community will spend approximately $10.00 per visit, meaning that this project will have an incremental economic impact of $100,000 to the community.

Provide an explanation as to how these economic outcomes will be achieved. Ensure to identify and detail all assumptions to support the reasonableness of your economic outcomes. All projects will be screened for significance of outcomes and the likelihood of them being achieved.

Describe the economic benefits associated with the proposed project including sales and job creation (e.g. number of highly qualified personnel).

You will be asked for anticipated visitor impact numbers later in the application (under ‘Benefits’).

Which WD priority does this project best support?

Choose one priority that best aligns with your project’s objectives, activities, and outcomes. Your project may be compared to similar projects of a chosen priority area. For the Tourism Relief Fund, please select tourism as your priority.

To select one of WD’s priorities, click on the magnifying glass icon and the “Lookup records” window will appear where you can then select a priority from.

 

Explain how this project supports the indicated priority. (maximum of 2,000 characters)

Explain in detail how the project’s objectives, activities, and outcomes align with the selected WD priority. Your description should include how your project aligns with one of the two focus areas:

  • Product development/Development and enhancement of tourism experiences: Projects that will enhance tourism experiences, help tourism businesses adapt to the “new normal” and modernize their offerings and projects that help the sector adopt more environmentally sustainable and inclusive practices.
  • Destination development: Projects that would position communities to take advantage of post-pandemic opportunities through strategic planning for medium- to long-term investments, as well as supporting destination development in line with objectives set out in the Federal Tourism Growth Strategy.

Indicate if your project will support Indigenous tourism or if the applicant is led or majority led by Indigenous peoples, and where applicable, explain how the project will support Indigenous tourism.

If your project supports the Government of Canada’s commitment to inclusive growth (under-represented groups) you may include this in your explanation, however this will not provide preferential status to your project.

Note: recipients will be encouraged to track inclusiveness indicators. Further explanations and/or indicators of groups impacted will be asked for under the ‘Diversity and inclusion’ section.

Project timelines

Proposed project start date*

This is the proposed date the agreement between the recipient and WD comes into effect. The date entered in this field should be in the future. This can be thought of as the start date for the project.

Note that costs may be eligible on a retroactive basis up to 12 months prior to the receipt of a project application, but no earlier than April 19, 2021.

Proposed project end date*

This is the anticipated date the project activity will cease.

Funding

Project costs

Note that costs may be eligible on a retroactive basis up to 12 months prior to the receipt of a project application, but no earlier than April 19, 2021.

Description*

Be sure to list costs and not activities. Please summarize the various major project costs.

Itemize project costs. One cost per line. Costs should add up to the amount requested of WD.

For example: do not list simply Stakeholder engagement: $200,000. Each cost should be broken down – does this involve a facilitator? Meeting room rental? Travel?

Recipients must ensure all project cost items are clearly verifiable.

Type*

Indicate if the cost is capital (e.g. purchase of equipment and associated costs such as installation) or non-capital (e.g. salaries, professional fees).

Amount*

The anticipated amount of the cost item.

Total project costs

Automatically sums the cost items listed above.

Note: This total must equal the Total expenditures from the ‘Cash flows’ section below.

To add a project cost item, click on the button and the following window will appear for you to provide the information. Click the Submit button once complete. You will still have the ability to edit the project cost item after hitting this Submit button.

Cash flows

Fiscal year (ending March 31): 2021/22

Total fiscal expenditures

Anticipated total project costs incurred in 2021/22.

WD funding

The amount of WD funding being requested to support 2021/22 expenses.

Reminder about funding available

For-profit businesses must indicate their request for either a non-repayable or a fully repayable contribution at the following rates of assistance and maximum amounts:

Contributions to non-profit organizations/Indigenous entities (not generating profits) will normally be non-repayable.

Non-WD funding

Automatically generated: the expenditures not covered by WD funding.

Fiscal year (ending March 31): 2022/23
Total fiscal expenditures

Anticipated total project costs incurred in 2022/23.

WD funding

The amount of WD funding being requested to support 2022/23 expenses.

Reminder about funding available

For-profit businesses must indicate their request for either a non-repayable or a fully repayable contribution at the following rates of assistance and maximum amounts:

  • non-repayable contributions up to 50% of eligible costs to a maximum of $100,000
  • repayable contributions up to 75% of eligible costs to a maximum of $500,000

Contributions to non-profit organizations/Indigenous entities (not generating profits) will normally be non-repayable.

  • project contribution amounts would not normally exceed $500,000
Non-WD funding

Automatically generated: the expenditures not covered by WD funding.

  1. To enter cash flow information, click the down arrow on the far right for the fiscal year you are interested in. Click the Edit option that appears.

  1. Enter the ‘Expenditures’ and ‘WD Amount Requested’ information and then hit Submit. You will still have the ability to edit the project cost item after hitting this Submit button.

WD funding requested*

This is the sum of the WD funding column in the ‘Cash flows’ section. It is automatically calculated.

Total expenditures*

This is the sum of the Total fiscal expenditures column in the ‘Cash flows’ section. It is automatically calculated.

Note: This total must equal the Total project costs from the ‘Project costs’ section above.

Total non-WD funding*

This is the sum of the Non-WD funding column in the ‘Cash flows’ section. It is automatically calculated.

Note: This total must equal the Amount provided by funding partners from the ‘Funding partners’ section below.

The solid arrows point to the fields that must balance, and the dotted lines indicate what column is being summed to produce those totals.

  • Note: The Total project costs above must balance with the Total expenditures below. Hit Save or Validate to update the totals.

  • Note: The Total non-WD funding above must equal the Amount provided by funding partners below. Hit Save or Validate to update the totals.

Funding partners

Funding partner

Please note that the first entry in the list of funding partners is reserved for your own organization (the “Applicant”). Add other funding partners or contributors, if any, in subsequent rows.

Identify all potential project contributors that will provide funding as a monetary contribution or in-kind contribution.

Note: recipients must ensure all contributions (including in-kind contributions) are clearly verifiable.

Funding category

Select from the drop down menu the description that best reflects the funding source.

Funding confirmed

Indicate if the funding has been confirmed. (Yes / No)

In the case where your organization (Applicant) is a source of funding, indicate yes if you have cash on hand.

If you have confirmed funding from other sources, please provide a letter of confirmation of this funding under “additional documents” at the end of the application.

Amount

The anticipated amount of funding this partner will provide.

Amount provided by funding partners

Automatically sums the funding amounts listed above.

Note: This total must equal the Total non-WD funding from the ‘Cash flows’ section above.

  1. To add a funding partner, click on the button and the following window will appear for you to input the information. Click the Submit button once complete. You will still have the ability to edit the project cost item after hitting this Submit button.

  1. To edit what your organization will be contributing towards this project, click the down arrow on the far right for the fiscal year you are interested in. Click the Edit option that appears and a similar pop-up window as shown above will appear.

Briefly describe any partnerships (non-financial and financial) for this project (maximum of 500 characters including space)*

Describe partnerships that would be important to the success of the proposed project.

Benefits

Primary activity

This relates back to the Primary Activity that you indicated in your project overview under the ‘Project description’ portion of the application.

Indicate the target date in which the Indicator is expected to commence.

Indicate the target number of full-time equivalent jobs maintained for your organization (and if applicable, any companies directly associated with your organization). Part-time employees should be calculated based on their equivalent to a FTE (i.e., one part time employee working approx. 20 hours/week should be represented as 0.5 FTE).

Indicate the target number of full-time equivalent jobs created for your organization (and if applicable, any affiliated companies). Part-time employees should be calculated based on their equivalent to a FTE (i.e., one part-time employee working approximately 20 hours/week should be represented as 0.5 FTE).

Indicate the target number of visits from domestic tourists, regional and national.

Indicate the target number of visits from international tourists.

For all of these measures, the measure indicated should be the incremental result of the project being completed. Do not include the number currently being achieved by your organization.

Other significant economic benefits (maximum of 1,000 characters, including spaces)*

Provide numerical values measured year over year from the project funding start date typically to one year following the project completion date.

Provide an explanation as to how these economic outcomes will be achieved. Ensure to identify and detail all assumptions to support the reasonableness of your economic outcomes.  All projects will be screened for significance of outcomes and the likelihood of them being achieved.

Does your project have activities that will benefit Francophones? If your project includes activities that will directly benefit the Francophone community in Western Canada or if you are willing to modify your project to extend its benefits to the Francophone community, choose yes. (maximum of 1,500 characters including spaces)*

Indicate how the project can support Francophones in the West (signage, information, services, normalizing the use of both official languages, etc).

Clearly outline if the project aligns with other Government of Canada priorities, provincial government priorities, industry needs, and your organization’s long-term research, capital, and/or strategic plans. (maximum of 1,500 characters including spaces)*

Examples could include linkages to the Federal Tourism Growth Strategy, Provincial tourism strategies, local/regional destination marketing plans, among others.

Timelines – milestones

Milestones

Indicate the different milestones associated with the project and when you plan on having these completed.

Other timeline comments (including potential dependencies on the milestones getting achieved) should be included to provide any additional context or information related to these milestones. (maximum of 1,000 characters including spaces)*

Market

Competition (maximum of 1,000 characters including spaces)*

Indicate if you are the only organization providing the product, service or activity in your market. Market can be defined as within your community, region or province depending on the situation. Given the current economic conditions (e.g. COVID-19 pandemic), describe how your project addresses market demand.

Provide an explanation of your response.

Rationale (maximum of 2,000 characters including spaces)*

Explain why this is a project that WD should provide an investment towards.

Provincial comparison

Indicate which province(s) will benefit from this project. In determining your response, please consider direct benefits only.

Revenue generation

Indicate if the project will generate any revenues.

Management

Governance (maximum of 2,000 characters including spaces)*

Describe the organization’s governance, e.g., Volunteer board of directors comprised of members from industry, government, academia, etc. The board of directors delegate day-to-day management to «organization’s lead» and provides oversight through «oversight model».

If your organization is a business, please describe your ownership and management structure.

Qualifications (maximum of 2,000 characters including spaces)*

What are the relevant qualifications (certificates, degrees, etc.) and experiences of the key individuals who will be responsible for managing and implementing the project?

Additional details (maximum of 3,000 characters including spaces)*

This is an opportunity to expand upon the limited details you were asked to provide earlier.

Commencement of operations in Canada?

When did your organization commence operations in Canada. This may be earlier or later than your incorporation date.

Full-time equivalent jobs in 2019?

Indicate the number of full-time equivalent jobs for your organization (and if applicable, any affiliated companies) as of December 31, 2019.

Part-time employees should be calculated based on their equivalent to a FTE (i.e., one part time employee working approx. 20 hours/week should be represented as 0.5 FTE).

Domestic tourists in 2019

Indicate the number of domestic/travelling Canadians for your organization (and if applicable, any affiliated companies) as of December 31, 2019.

International tourists in 2019

Indicate the number of international tourists for your organization (and if applicable, any affiliated companies) as of December 31, 2019.

COVID-19 health and safety regulations adaptations (maximum of 1,000 characters including spaces)*

Describe any adaptations that your organization has had to make (if applicable) as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This may include alterations to your business model, digital adaptations, additional safety enhancements, etc.

Closures due to a public health order

Indicate (with dates) any times since March 2020 in which your organization has been ordered to close as a result of a public health order regarding COVID-19.

New or adapted products and services (maximum of 3,500 characters including spaces)*

Indicate how this project will result in a new or adapted tourism product or service to the market.

Risk of closure (maximum of 3,000 characters including spaces)*

Recognizing the impact that COVID-19 has had on the tourism sector, indicate if your organization is at risk of permanently closing in the next 90 days.

Provide a detailed overview of how COVID-19 has impacted the business and the potential to permanently close.

Mitigation plans (maximum of 3,500 characters including spaces)*

Describe any potential risks to this project succeeding and any mitigation strategies that you will employ to avoid the risk.

Third-party delivery

For non-profit ecosystem organizations, does this project intend on further distributing funds from WD to other organizations?  If so please attach a detailed plan (at the end of this application process) as to how the funds will be delivered, how success will be measured and how your organizations plans to report on the project.

Federal lands

Identify if any of your project will take place on federal lands.

Documents

Upload here the supporting documents to be provided with your application.

Upload the following mandatory documents:

Signing authority

Indicate here the individual within your organization who has signing power / the authority to enter into an agreement. This person may be different from the contact person.

Title*

Provide the contact person’s job title (e.g., President, Executive Director).

Email address*

The email at which the primary contact (as indicated earlier – this should be the legal signing authority who will signing the Contribution Agreement) may be reached.

Diversity and inclusion

The Government of Canada is committed to diversity and inclusion so that all Canadians have the opportunity to participate in and contribute to the growth of the economy. Gender and diversity data collected may be used for research, statistics, program and policy evaluation, risk management, strategy development, reporting, and gender-based analysis (including GBA+). This information can help the Government of Canada monitor progress on inclusive access to federal support programs and services; to identify and remove barriers; and, to make changes to improve inclusive access. The Government of Canada understands that participation of underrepresented groups is an integral part of building strong and inclusive communities.

Is your organization majority (i.e. over 50%) owned or led by individuals who-self identify as:

Majority owned or led is defined as an organization with one or more of the federal inclusive growth priorities groups, with a long-term control and management of the organization and an active role in both strategic and day-to-day decision making. If applicable, please indicate whether your organization is led or majority-led by one or more of the listed groups. Note that this information will not be used in the assessment process. Aggregate and anonymous data may be shared with other federal organizations, and/or published for reporting and monitoring purposes. If you do not know if a particular group is involved in the management team, or prefer not to answer, please select ‘prefer not to answer/do not know’ from the drop down box.

Will your project directly support any of the following diverse groups?

This question is regarding the people that will benefit from this project. Will your project directly support any of the groups listed? If so, please answer ‘yes’. If you do not know if your project will directly support a particular group, or prefer not to answer, just leave the field blank.

Attestation

Before you can complete and submit your expression of interest, it is necessary in this final step for you to affirm that you are aware of certain statutory obligations, and that your organization meets the eligibility requirements for the TRF program. For your reference, the complete text of this attestation is given below.

Please select “I agree” to affirm, and then submit using the “Submit” button

On behalf of the Applicant Organization, I hereby acknowledge and agree that:

For further information about WD’s information holdings and your rights under the Access to Information Act and Privacy Act, consult the Government of Canada’s Info Source publication.

I authorize WD, its officials, employees, agents and contractors to make enquiries of such persons, firms, corporations, federal, provincial and municipal government departments/ agencies, and non-profit, economic development or other organizations as may be appropriate, and to collect and share information with them, as WD deems necessary in order to assess this application, to administer and monitor the implementation of the subject project and to evaluate the results of the project and related Programs.

Validation

For this step, any errors or omissions in the form will be brought to your attention, and you will be given the opportunity to review them, and make any necessary corrections.

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