Investment Readiness Program

Investment Readiness Program

Newest round of the Investment Readiness Program offers grants of up to $75,000 to help local social enterprises become investment-ready

Applications must be submitted by November 22, 2022

Local social purpose organizations – which include charities, not-for-profit organizations, co-ops and social enterprises – can now apply for grants that will help them scale up to take on investments in Canada’s growing social finance market.

Funded by the Government of Canada, the Investment Readiness Program (IRP – now in its third round of funding since 2019) is offering grants ranging from $10,000 to $75,000 for social enterprises in all stages of development of their revenue-generation models. The goal of the IRP is to support social purpose organizations in the social finance market, generating a return for investors while having a positive impact on their communities.

Community Foundations of Canada (CFC) and several partner organizations are administering the IRP and distributing the funds. Dufferin Community Foundation is part of the Central South-Western Ontario Region, which will lead the distribution of approximately $440,000 in the area.

 

Meals on wheels booster grant recipient

What are IRP funds…

IRP funds can be used to research, launch, design, measure, and scale up social enterprises to achieve an organization’s sustainability plan to take on investment in the future. Funds are intended to be used to access outside expert advice or services to:

  • Explore a new business idea or develop a business plan to test an inspiring idea
  • Create a marketing plan to reach new audiences
  • Prepare the documentation needed to approach potential investors
  • Plan new products or services to grow revenue

The funds are not eligible to be used towards core operating costs. They should move social enterprises forward along the spectrum to investment readiness.

Select your funding stream

Your organization will need to determine which of the two funding streams you will submit your application to. Your options are the Explore stream ($10,000 – $25,000) or the Stabilize and Build stream ($30,000 – $75,000).

Explore stream ($10,000 to $25,000):

This stream is for social purpose organizations that are:

  • At the early stages of exploring, developing and testing their social enterprise idea. You may be researching, developing and testing different aspects of your social enterprise plan, such as your revenue-generation models.

OR

  • In need of technical assistance or support on a very specific aspect of your project, that will assist you in launching or growing your social enterprise, or in preparing you to take on investment. This may include items such as accessing legal advice, market expertise, etc.

 

Stabilize and Build stream ($30,000 – $75,000):

This stream is for social purpose organizations that already have a well-developed enterprising model and are farther along in their understanding and preparation for taking on investment. Your organization is ready to take on a big project to increase your organization’s impact and get one step closer to your social finance goals.

Key dates

September 28-November 22, 2022: Applications portal is open

November 24, 2022-February 10, 2023: Application reviews and funding recommendations

February 13, 2023: Social Purpose Organizations notified about funding decisions

February 14, 2023-onwards: Funding agreements signed and payments issued

February 15-December 15, 2023: Funding must be used during this time period

Helpful resources

How your organization can apply

The Investment Readiness Program will accept applications between September 29, 2022 and November 22, 2022.

Visit the Community Foundation of Canada IRP webpage for more information and resources at https://communityfoundations.ca/initiatives/the-investment-readiness-program/.

When you’re ready to apply… 

 Questions?

Contact Michele Fisher, Executive Director of Dufferin Community Foundation at michele@dufferinfoundation.ca or 519-938-0780 or visit the Community Foundations of Canada website.

IRP’s Central South-Western Ontario Region partners

The Investment Readiness Program is funded by the Government of Canada’s SI/SF Strategy.