$105million Community Building Fund Opens

Apr 01, 2021
Need to Know
Community Building Fund
Operating Stream 
Open for Applications
Ontario Trillium Foundation

Application Deadline: April 28, 5pm ET

The Government of Ontario’s Community Building Fund is investing $105 million to support community arts and culture, heritage, tourism, sport and recreation organizations, that are experiencing significant financial pressures due to the pandemic. These organizations support community engagement, tourism and recreation through a variety of attractions, experiences, programs, events and activities. The Community Building Fund is offering two streams – Operating and Capital.

Eligibility Guidelines

Organizations applying to the Community Building Fund - Operating stream need to have a significant presence in the arts and culture, heritage, tourism, sport and recreation sectors, and operate facilities and/or deliver experiences or programs in Ontario that are open to the public, 

and must meet one of the following:

  • A charitable organization or public foundation registered as a charity by the Canada Revenue Agency
  • An organization incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation without share capital in a Canadian jurisdiction
  • A First Nation / Métis / Inuit or other Indigenous community funding opportunities offered by the Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries and Grants Ontario.

Ineligible organizations include:

  • Any Municipality or municipal agencies
  • A conservation authority
  • An unincorporated branch or chapter of a registered charity or incorporated not-for-profit organization
  • A for-profit organization
  • A university/college, hospital, school and or an agency of one of these organizations
  • An agency of the provincial or federal government
  • Organizations outside Ontario

Operating Stream Outcomes

Organizations can apply for funding from the Community Building Fund - Operating stream to remain viable to operate facilities and/or deliver experiences or programs to Ontarians in the short and longer term. Outcomes include:

  • Transform operations to meet public health requirements  
  • Maintain viability to operate facilities and/or deliver experiences or programs in the short and medium term 
  • Ensure sustainability to operate facilities and/or deliver experiences or programs in the long term 
  • Adapt to new ways of working  
  • Meet the changing needs of program and service delivery 
  • Enhance visitor and participant experiences

To learn more, attend OTF's information sessions HERE

To visit OTF's webpage for more information, click HERE.

Overview of key elements needed in Community Building Fund - Operating stream applications:
  • Impacts identified are COVID-19 related.
  • Grant request aligns with Community Building Fund - Operating stream outcomes
  • Request amount aligns with organization's total eligible operating expenses
  • Financial Workbook (budget) includes eligible expenses only

Grant application deadline: April 28, 2021 at 5 PM ET. 
Term length: 6 or 12 months.
Amount awarded: Minimum $10,000, Maximum $250,000

Contact OTF's Support Centre for general inquiries about the Community Building Fund - Operating stream. 
1 800 263 2887

Book a 15-minute application coaching call with an OTF Program Manager. 
Book online: otf.ca/support/application-coaching

2021 Reconnect Festival and Event Program
Ministry of Heritage, Tourism, and Culture Industries

Application Deadline: April 20, 5 pm ET

The 2021 Reconnect Festival and Event Program supports innovative programming and marketing for festivals and events. It helps to improve experiences for visitors and stimulate local community economic development and recovery.

To be eligible, your organization must:

  • be Ontario-based with legal status for one year or longer, as of January 1, 2021. For example, this includes organizations that are:
    • established by or under legislation
    • federally or provincially incorporated
    • band councils established under the Indian Act
    • other Indigenous organizations that are incorporated
  • not be in default of the terms and conditions of any grant or loan agreement with any ministry or agency of the Government of Ontario (for example, Ontario Trillium Foundation)

Your event must also meet each of the following requirements:

  • take place between April 1, 2021, and March 31, 2022
  • if an in-person event, it must occur in the province of Ontario. Broadcast or virtual events must be produced in Ontario
  • be open to the public at large without membership in a club or group
  • follow all municipal and provincial guidelines, including health and safety guidelines

Organizations that are approved for funding will enter into a Transfer Payment Agreement with the province.

Read more HERE.

Download the application form HERE

Ontario Arts Council 2021 Funding Opportunities

The Ontario Arts Council has several programs with application deadlines upcoming. Read more about the programs, their funding, and the application process HERE.

You can also review the OAC's COVID-19 Updates, FAQs and Resources.

MHSTCI Webinar Recording
  • Community Building Fund - Operating Stream
  • 2021 Reconnect Festival and Event Program
  • Ontario Arts Council 2021 Funding

The Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture hosted a webinar about on the above granting programs on March 31st. The webinar covered application processes, timelines, and requirements for the programs. To watch the recording, click HERE.

At the OMA
Miigwetch, Nia:wen, Qujannamiik, Merci,
Thank you!


The online Indigenous Collections Symposium 2021: Mashkawatgong-mamawewiziwin – strengthening our bonds, sharing our practices took place last week. This gathering brought together 250 colleagues from Indigenous and non-Indigenous organizations and communities from all over the country.  Together, we explored ways of doing our work that honour Indigenous heritage and discussed current needs while proposing actionable steps to support each other in the journey towards reconciliation.

We are grateful to all speakers, moderators, and Elders for guiding our learning and to all attendees for their enthusiastic participation!

From the second day's discussion, the above graphic shows the ideas, moments, and teachings that resonated the most with attendees.
A highlight of the event was the keynote address by Jisgang Nika Collison and her team at the Haida Gwaii Museum at K̲ay Llnagaay, who shared their deeply personal understandings of and connections to the stories and belongings in their care.
"I like to think that our ancestors put a string on their treasures &
themselves, binding us to something that transcends the preservation of
history, culture & identity... so that we would come together to heal"
–Jisgang Nika Collison, Symposium Keynote
(Pictured above, top left in composite)
Speakers from across Ontario and Turtle Island brought their perspectives, learnings, and practices to share with all our attendees.

One of the sessions discussed the unique experiences of museum professionals working in cultural centres with and for their communities:
"The Ojibwe Cultural Foundation is not just a museum or archives; it is a cultural centre, and community gathering place. It is a safe place for learning, and sharing. It is a place for listening, observing, and reflecting."
-- Naomi Recollet, Ojibwe Cultural Foundation
(Pictured above)

We look forward to sharing the recordings in the future. We are keen to facilitate an ongoing conversation about Indigenous Collections; stay tuned for news about resources and next steps!
“Thank you so much to all the elders and presenters and organizers, this has been a wonderful experience and I look forward to putting my aspirations into practice.”
– Symposium Attendee
A special thank you to the Indigenous Collections Symposium Working Group, the Department of Canadian Heritage, and to our partners: the Canadian Museum of History and the Canadian Museums Association.
Explore Ontario's Museums
Special Feature
May 28th Ontario edition of The Globe and Mail & online
Tell us your story!

The OMA is hoping to amplify stories of innovative and engaging museum initiatives. How has your museum pivoted to offer online or safe in-person activities since the pandemic began? What are you planning for summer 2021 that showcases our province and hyperlocal tourism? 

Share your museum's experience with us to help shape the content of our Special Feature in The Globe and Mail.

Please reach out to community@museumsontario.ca
The OMA and The Globe and Mail are working together to provide Ontario's museums with an opportunity to showcase the experiences they will be offering during 2021's unique summer tourism season. 

This special feature of museums will highlight both in-person and virtual experiences in Ontario museums, and provides an opportunity for museums of all sizes and Regional Museum Networks to reach out to visitors in-print and online with special rates to advertise. 

As museums plan for their re-opening dates and tourists plan their "staycations", the Explore Ontario's Museums special feature, slated for publication on Friday, May 28th, will close out May is Museum Month with all that Ontario museums have to offer!

Important Dates:

  • Advertising Commitment- April 30th, 2021
  • Material Deadlines- May 7th, 2021
  • Print/Digital Publication Dates- Friday, May 28th, 2021

Read the Special Feature information Package HERE. 

We encourage museums to work with their Regional Tourism Organizations (RTOs) and / or Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs) to coordinate advertising. 

To learn more and participate, reach out to your Globe and Mail advertising representative:
KEITH RYDER, Special Reports Associate

May is Museum Month 2021

Since 2000, the OMA has led a campaign for May is Museum Month / Mai, Mois des Musées. The International Council of Museums (ICOM) has declared the theme for International Museum Day 2021 (May 18th) to be "The Future of Museums: Recover and Reimagine." 

In 2021, public awareness of the safe, quality experiences that museums can offer is especially important. For MMM 2021, the OMA encourages museums to use social media and digital tools to share the offers they have for their communities and hyperlocal tourists. 

May is Museum Month is an opportunity to showcase the excellent work of museums and engage your supporters! You can download a MMM logo, and plan your upcoming communications: 

Look for a social media kit in early April!

New and Renewing OMA Members
Aurora Cultural Centre
Brockville Museum
Canadian Museum of History
Canadian Transportation Museum and
Heritage Village
Fort Frances Museum and Cultural
Georgina Pioneer Village and Archives
Grenville County Historical Society
Hamilton Civic Museums
Homer Watson House and Gallery
John R. Park Homestead
Lakeshore Grounds Interpretive Centre
Law Society of Ontario
MacLaren Art Centre
Marie Dressler Foundation
Mississippi Valley Textile Museum
Niagara Military Museum
North Lanark Historical Society
Northwestern Ontario Aviation Heritage
Ontario Electric Railway Historical Association
Penetanguishene Centennial Museum & Archives
Sculptors Society of Canada/Canadian Sculpture Centre
Ska-Nah-Doht Village and Museum
Textile Museum of Canada
The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada Regimental Museum
Thousand Islands Boat Museum
Uxbridge Historical Centre (Museum and Archives)
West Parry Sound District Museum
Westfield Heritage Village
Whitchurch-Stouffville Museum
Workers Arts and Heritage Centre
Fleming College Brealey Library
Ram Digital Imaging
Sector News
Ontario 2021 Budget Commits $200 Million to Help Stabilize Tourism Industry
Government of Ontario

The Ontario government is providing an estimated $100 million for a new one-time Ontario Tourism and Hospitality Small Business Support Grant and $100 million for a new one-time recovery program.

This significant investment is part of the 2021 Budget, Ontario's Action Plan: Protecting People's Health & Our Economy, and will support the province's tourism industry as it recovers from the impacts of COVID-19. Total support from the Ontario government for the tourism, culture, sports, recreation, and heritage industries since the start of the pandemic now totals $625 million.

Details were provided by Premier Doug Ford, Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries, Peter Bethlenfalvy, Minister of Finance and President of the Treasury Board.

Read more HERE.

Ontario Supports New Greek-Canadian Heritage Museum
Government of Ontario

The Ontario government is investing $325,000 to support the planning and development of a new Greek-Canadian heritage museum to house a collection of artifacts in Toronto. The museum will serve as a new community hub and central repository of photos, historic newspapers, books and an archive of recorded histories.

Additionally, it will provide professionally designed educational programs for people of all ages, linking generations of Canadians to the Hellenic legacy. 

Details were provided by Premier Doug Ford and Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries, during a virtual meeting with His Eminence Archbishop Sotirios. 

Read the media release HERE.

Watch a video of the announcement HERE

Niagara Parks Power Station
opens to the public July 1

The Niagara Parks Power Station will open its doors to the public on Canada Day.

It’s located just south of the Horseshoe Falls and is considered to be the only fully intact, decommissioned hydroelectric power plant of its era in the world.

Phase One of the visitor experience, which opens July 1, will include daytime tours of the historic building and a nighttime immersive sound and light experience.

Read more HERE.

CCDI Webinar: Inclusive leadership
Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion

April 06, 2021
1:00 PM EST

This webinar will explore what inclusive leadership should look like. It also provides you with the strategies and knowledge you need to successfully implement inclusive leadership into your role.

For current Canadian Certified Inclusion Professionals (CCIPTM), this event qualifies for continued professional development credit. Contact ccip.certification@ccdi.ca for more information.

Register as an Employer Partner

Register as a current CCDI Individual Practitioner

Register as a member of the public (A fee of $39 will be applied)

Read more HERE.

Webinar: Intersections: Arts and Culture in a Post-Pandemic World
Ryerson University

April 15, 2021
1:00 PM EST

COVID-19 has taken a toll on so many fields, but perhaps none more so than the arts and culture. Hear from the private and public sectors, government and academic experts in the field who will share thoughts on when we might return to normal...and what a new normal may look like.

Read more HERE.

Canadian Museums Association
Special General Meeting and Nominations

The following information is provided for members of the Canadian Museums Association:

Special General Meeting
Canadian Museums Association

On March 16, 2021, spurred by resignations from the CMA Board on March 10, a group of concerned members of the Canadian Museums Association (CMA) came together to discuss critical issues facing the sector and the lack of consistent response from our professional association. The group wrote an open letter to the CMA executive, CMA members, and museum professionals across Canada expressing their concerns, and invited members to sign a petition calling for a Special General Meeting (SGM).

The petition gathered 92 signatures, including those of 54 Voting Members, as required by the Bylaws, and the notice of the result was sent to the CMA Secretariat and Board on March 19. The SGM, provisionally scheduled for April 30, will provide members and representatives of the community the opportunity to prepare a mandate letter and resolutions for the Association AGM. Notice of the SGM will be sent to all CMA members by the Secretariat.

Call for Nominations by Members
Board of the Canadian Museums Association

On March 25, 2021, the CMA announced the appointment of two new Board members, providing quorum for the Annual General Meeting, scheduled for May 3, 2021. At the same time, the CMA issued a renewed Call for Nominations. Nominations of candidates for the Board are crucial to support a renewed CMA. As a membership-driven organization, it is up to members to actively support its work.


Call for Nominations by Members
There are 11 positions on the Board, eight Directors-at-Large and three Officers (President and two Vice-Presidents). This is our opportunity to ensure that members can vote for Directors from a diverse and representative slate of candidates presented by the Members.

We are inviting you to be nominated or to nominate another candidate for the Board of the CMA. Submission guidelines are posted on the CMA website. Submissions require a short bio, proof of CMA membership and information about involvement with the CMA. The submission must also be supported by two voting members and include the concurrence of the nominee.

Nominations from Members must be sent by April 15, 2021 to elkaweinstein@gmail.com. We will prepare the Members slate to be sent in writing to the CMA by April 17, 2021.

Please reach out to us if you have questions or require further information:
Elka Weinstein
Victoria Dickenson
Naomi Grattan
Robin Inglis

Read more HERE.
en français ICI.

In the Media

Port Dover museum first in area to re-open

The Timmins Museum to store 11,000 artifacts, some more than 7,000 years old, this year
Qaumajuq, a landmark new museum, gives visibility to the richness of Inuit art
Southwestern Ontario Baseball Heritage Pass to debut this summer
What's On
Reflections: The Life and Works of J. W. (Jack) McLaren
Huron County Museum
Aylmer - Malahide Museum & Archives
Bruce County Museum & Cultural Centre
Militia Muster
City of Niagara Falls Museums
Contribute to Member News!
ONmuseums is published every Thursday morning and we are happy to feature member news and events:
  • We collect content from the Discover Ontario Museums website "What's On" section. OMA Members simply have to update their museum listing to be featured in ONmuseums.
  • Not sure of how to update your listing? Click here to learn how to maximize your museum listing page
Job Postings and Events

Community Engagement Coordinator

Art Gallery of Guelph

April 5
Read more HERE.


Heritage Minutes Officer

Historica Canada

April 7
Read more HERE.


Heritage Centre Coordinator

Community Waterfront Heritage Centre

April 8
Read more HERE.

Ontario Museum Jobs


April 12: Cultural and Events Administrator, Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville. Apply HERE.

April 21: Administrative Assistant, Myseum of Toronto. Apply HERE.

April 23: Collections Curator, Thunder Bay Museum. Apply HERE.

To access all OMA Job Board Listings, CLICK HERE
The OMA features job listings from the online submissions received through our website.  To submit a listing for an open position at your institution, CLICK HERE!
OMA Office Closure from April 2 - April 5

The OMA office will be closed from April 2 - April 5. We look forward to connecting with you again soon!

The OMA Welcomes Your Support

If you are already an OMA member, please renew your membership when you receive an email reminder. If you are not a member, please consider joining, either as an institution or an individual. You can find information about member categories and benefits on our website.

Please also consider making a donation to the OMA on our website or through Canada Helps.

Your support of the OMA and your participation in events like this webinar make us stronger as a sector, and we appreciate each and everyone one of you.

An OMA membership connects you with our network of over 1000 members, representing 700 museums, galleries, and heritage sites across the province. In addition, an OMA membership provides you with the latest news via the ONmuseums newsletter, eNews alerts, and COVID-19 resources to mitigate impact for Ontario museums, galleries and heritage sites.

COVID-19 Resources

The OMA has prepared a dedicated webpage of COVID-19 communications and resources, updated as new information and resources become available.
Read more HERE.

We're Here to Help!

For all questions or inquiries please contact the OMA: community@museumsontario.ca or call 416-348-8672 / 1-866-662-8672.

Marie G. Lalonde
Executive Director

OMA Twitter OMA Twitter
OMA Facebook OMA Facebook
OMA Instagram OMA Instagram
OMA Website OMA Website
Copyright © 2021 Ontario Museum Association, All rights reserved.
You are receiving this email as a member, stakeholder or partner of the Ontario Museum Association.
Our mailing address is:
Ontario Museum Association
50 Baldwin Street

TorontoOntario M5T 1L4