Dare to Dream program
This year there will only be ONE round of funding with a submission deadline of March 31, 2017. If you were thinking of applying for the Fall round of funding, this means you will need to submit your proposal early - by March 31, 2017.
In addition to our regular stream of applications, we're reaching out to immigrant, refugee, ethno-cultural and racialized communities (IRER). Read more about the application process below to see which stream of funding you qualify for.
Do I qualify?
No matter which stream of funding you apply for, the form is the same. There is a question at the beginning where you can let us know whether your project fits the criteria for our IRER funding. It’s a yes or no question…pretty simple.
- Your group is made up of young people under the age of 18
- Your project is focused on supporting youth under the age of 18
- Your project is focused on mental health and wellness
- Your project is based in Ontario
What makes an IRER application?
Ontario is the most multicultural province in Canada. We know that immigrant, refugee, ethno-cultural and racialized youth experience unique challenges related to mental health and we’d like to encourage applications for youth-led projects that aim to positively affect these communities.
There are lots of great projects out there designed to make things better for youth, but to receive Dare to Dream funding, projects must be youth-initiated and youth-led. This means that young people come up with an idea on their own and carry it out with a little help from their adult ally. As such, your group should mostly consist of youth under the age of 18. In your application, be sure to tell us about how you - as young people - came up with this idea and what roles you're playing in making it happen. Your project must be focused on mental health and wellness and you must reside in Ontario.
What do we mean when we say mental health?
“Mental health is defined as a state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.” (World Health Organization - http://www.who.int/features/factfiles/mental_health/en/)
When we talk about mental health, we don’t necessarily mean mental illness. Mental illnesses, like depression, anxiety, bi-polar disorder, are important to talk about, but our focus is on promoting mental health through a youth and community initiative. We like to see projects that take interesting and innovative approaches to promoting mental health and wellness. These include projects that talk about culture, identity, community building and growth! If you think it relates to mental health, apply and just be sure to tell us *how* in your application!
The Dare to Dream application deadline is March 31, 2017. The Daret o Dream Review Committee reads through each and every proposal, they will complete their review by late April. You'll hear back from the Review Committee by mid-May. They'll let you know if your project has been funded.
If you've been funded, we'll send along the project plan template and a Memorandum of agreement. The project plan template helps you or your group lay out your project idea in a clear way, and goes over some important considerations to make your project a success. The Memorandum of agreement is the contract between you or your group and Dare to Dream. Once this contract is signed, we can send along the cheque and you're good to go!
Our Dare to Dream team is here to help if you have any questions, or would like support in filling out your application. Reach us at D2D@cheo.on.ca or at 613-737-2297 x3426.
What’s the process?
IRER Project Showcase:
Colours of Culture Coffee House
The Ethno-Cultural Youth Advisory Committee within the Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa is a group of youth that focus on services and advocacy for newcomer and ethno-cultural youth needs.
They created the event Colours of Culture Coffee House. This event was focused on increasing the knowledge and awareness of youth about mental health and engaging youth in fun activities and thoughtful dialogue. They hosted a multicultural event which aimed to represent the many diverse cultures of Canada and to brought communities together in a space of mutual respect and empowerment. This included live performances, henna tattoos, food, arts, crafts, dance and an art showcase. They used art therapy to encourage self-expression, self discovery and emotional growth as well as decrease stigmatizing attitudes and behaviours towards mental health, and increase their knowledge and awareness of mental health issues.
Young Women’s Mental Health Forum
The Purple Sisters, a Youth Advisory Committee of the Youth Services Bureau, hosted a 1-day young women’s mental health forum, that focused on the lived experience of marginalized women, and the impact that sexism, transphobia, racism and similar forms of discrimination have on the mental health of young women. They brought together young women from across Ottawa for workshops on self-care, how to be an ally, media portrayal of women and the impact on mental health, and similar workshops, as well as two keynote speakers who talked about the experiences of trans women and the importance of a supportive family. Their project, hosted at the Youth Services Bureau, brought together community partners to share resources, and helped young women connect with their peers in safer spaces that validated their identities and sought to support them as best they could.
Project Tsi niyonkwariho:tens (Our ways/responsibilities) was an idea from youth Six Nations students in at the Brantford Collegiate Institute, who wanted to celebrate their heritage, traditions and identity as a means of building their personal resilience. Through traditional Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Condolence teachings about grief, loss and mourning, they helped process their own experiences of loss. By bringing in elders and speakers from their community, they shared authentic teachings on traditional mental wellness and resiliency. They created medicine pouches, wampum belts and shell jewelry to build community and resilience through the celebration of their heritage, identities and traditions.
In their own words, “Our hope is that we will feel more comfortable talking about our compound grief issues that stem from the nearby residential school that many of our families attended. We hope to have discussions about suicide which is prevalent in our communities and has touched all of us on a personal level. We need to name it to change it. Returning to the teachings from Sonkwiatison (Creator) about our original instructions will help us to be courageous enough to have these conversations. We will provide a safe and nurturing environment to share and also have the caring and supportive adults in place to be our soft place to land when we discuss these difficult subjects”
White Owl Native Ancestry Association Elder and Youth Teaching Circle
The Elder and Youth Teaching Circle is a weekly program for young people in Kitchener, Ontario. Their activities vary from special outings, to traditional teachings such as the seven ways of living as well as how to smudge and why smudging is important. The project used culture to teach positive mental health by allowing youth to experience traditional healings as well as learn cultural aspects of their heritage. They learned the different medicines used to provide positive mental health and attended a support group to help them heal from any possible trauma they experienced. The youth were given a therapeutic experience through each session by making crafts, and participating in group activities such as sweat lodges and canoe trips. The program provided the youth with the ability to use the traditions passed on through the elders to increase their mental health.
The YouTH Matter group, from Sudbury, Ontario, wanted to find a fun-filled way to engage more young people in their community in mental health education and stigma reduction. Through a wide range of activities, with a different theme each month, including yoga sessions, a coffee house and open mic, a movie night and a pool party, the group combined fun and engaging activities with mental health education. They didn’t just want their peers to learn about mental health, they also wanted more opportunities for young people to come together and relax, and to get to know new people in their communities. They wanted to help make sure young people knew where to go if they were struggling, so they brought out resources and talked about local services. The best part? They knew that young people have a lot going on, and that different kinds of activities interest different people, so their monthly themes were set up to engage different kinds of young people, at different times and with different interests, each month.
IMPACT! Youth Summit
The IMPACT! Youth Summit brought together young people from across the Hanover region for an intense one-day conference on mental health, youth engagement and leadership. They helped provide young people involved in school clubs with the skills they would need to better support their initiatives, and provided students with education and training on how to fight bullying in their schools and communities. They brought in keynote speakers to share their experiences about bullying, leadership and mental health, while providing students with opportunities to connect with peers and build their own skill sets.
Project iMatter is about engaging students in educating other students. Working with their student leadership program, youth from Cardinal Newman Catholic Secondary School provided peer-led mental health education to every single Grade 9 student in their school in an interactive, engaging format. They provided ongoing opportunities to educate students in self-care, and how to look out for their own mental health, and brought in keynote speakers to bridge the gap between mental health education, and the lived experience of the speakers. Beyond their own activities, they’ve worked with other school clubs to talk about how to bring mental health into different aspects of the school community, with a mental health bulletin board, a poster contest, and other strategies.