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2024 First Nations harm reduction grants are now open

Press Release

Jan 31, 2024

T​he deadline to apply is Feb. 14, 2024

With the toxic drug crisis in British Columbia (BC) continuing to disproportionately impact First Nations people, it is crucial to support innovative, community-based, and grassroots harm reduction initiatives to curtail the risk of toxic drug poisoning. The First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) is committed to supporting community-driven, Nation-based initiatives that seek to improve the health and wellness of First Nations in BC.

First Nations communities, First Nations Health Service Organizations and Friendship Centres, situated both in community and in urban centres, are well-positioned to understand their local community’s unique strengths and challenges, and to identify innovative, appropriate and culturally relevant programs and services to address this public health emergency.

By providing communities and organizations with harm reduction funding, the FNHA aims to support and advance innovative practices to meet the needs of community members both at home and those living away from home.

The FNHA Policy on Harm Reduction acknowledges that harm reduction informed services involve a range of nonjudgmental approaches and strategies aimed at providing and enhancing the knowledge, skills, resources, and supports for individuals, their families, and communities to make informed decisions to be safer and healthier. This First Nations Harm Reduction Grant funding is intended to provide direct support to harm reduction informed initiatives benefitting First Nations individuals, families and communities.

Grant eligibility

First Nations communities, First Nations Health Service Organizations, and Friendship Centres that are engaged in direct health service delivery to First Nations in BC may be eligible for funding to provide a community-driven harm reduction event or initiative. To be eligible, the event or initiative must be held before March 31, 2025. The deadline for applications is Feb. 14, 2024.

Grant funding maximum

Maximum funding available through the First Nations Harm Reduction Grant is $50,000 per application.

Applications will be weighed against the following criteria

The proposed event or initiative:

  • Provides mental wellness and substance use support services, framed within a harm reduction context, to support people who request them
  • Improves upon the range of harm reduction services available, as an enhancement and not duplication
  • Provides support, programming and/or events for family and friends impacted by the outcomes of the toxic drug supply
  • Incorporates people who use drugs as much as possible into the planning and delivery of services
  • Demonstrates collaboration or partnership with other First Nations communities, health or social organizations providing health services to First Nations in BC at the regional or sub-regional level
  • Is fair and equitable within and across the five regions

Note that First Nations communities and First Nations organizations that are focusing on culturally safe harm reduction practices will be prioritized for this funding.

Application form

To apply for a grant, please complete the application form. Funds may be used for any required costs necessary to carry out the event or initiative with the exception of those expenses listed as ineligible on the application form. Only fully completed application forms will be considered.

In the spirit of leaving no one behind, First Nations communities that require support to complete the grant and/or develop a plan for this work please email hrgrants@fnha.ca and we can support you through this process.

Applications can be submitted via email to hrgrants@fnha.ca no later than Feb. 14, 2024.

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