Programs and Resources


Our Community Financial Resiliency Program helps improve the capacity and resilience of the not-for-profit and charitable sector to build equity, and strengthen their financial sustainability.

We do this by offering:

  • Free banking for not-for profits and charities
  • High-interest earnings on banking for eligible Affordable Housing Providers
  • Financial education for not-for profits and charities and their communities
  • Access to funding
  • Governance and capacity building tools
  • Support to amplify causes
  • Support to develop social purpose real estate

And additional advocacy and support around:

  • Connecting community organizations
  • Research and knowledge sharing
  • Sector building
  • Policy development
  • Pilot projects
  • Collaboration and shared platforms





Our Microfinance program works to address socio-economic inequity by creating opportunities for financial independence and reducing barriers to banking for those often excluded from financing. “Microfinance is about financial inclusion for the underserved,” says Susan Henry, Alterna’s Manager of Corporate Social Responsibility. “We have seen first hand the positive impact this program can have on families and the community at large.”



We do this by offering:


  • Up to $25k for entrepreneurs
  • Focus segments include:
    • Social enterprises
    • New Canadians
    • Professional development
    • Low-income earners
    • Women entrepreneurs

With additional support around:


  • One-on-one consultations
  • Financial education
  • Credit building
  • Wrap around support
  • Workshops and tools





Resources to help you get started:

Download PDF: Business Planning Steps | Download PDF: Statement of Cash Flow



As part of our ability to support the Financial Health of Communities, we  focus on delivering essential programming that supports members, community organizations and students of all ages, through free financial literacy development and education. Last year we delivered over 150 workshops on Financial Literacy to the Community and our partners.

Our programs span from understanding the basics of Financial Literacy, to more in-depth and specific workshops for Social Innovators and Entrepreneurs, or Nonprofit and Charitable organizations.

If you have a particular area of interest or need, regarding financial literacy education please reach out to our team 





The program provides grants of up to $1,000 to initiatives where a small amount of money can have a significant impact in the communities we serve.

Eligibility:


  • Registered charities
  • Incorporated non-profit organizations
  • Co-operatives without share capital
  • Unincorporated associations are eligible with the sponsorship of an eligible incorporated organization. Alterna will only issue cheques to incorporated groups.
  • While membership in Alterna is not a requirement for grant funding, preference will be given to member organizations. Click Here to find out more about how your organization can benefit from membership at Alterna.







Application Process:


Completed applications can be submitted to communitygrants@alterna.ca A complete application will include:

  • Completed application form
  • Proof of charitable status, copy of Articles of Incorporation or Letters Patent
  • Letters of recommendation (optional)
  • For unincorporated associations, a letter of support from an incorporated non-profit organization is required. Cheques will not be issued to unincorporated groups.


Application Deadline: Yet to be determined 

Alterna will not support:

  • Initiatives that take place outside of Alterna Savings service areas (Greater Toronto Area, Ottawa, Kingston, Pembroke, North Bay, Dryden, Fort Frances, Ignace, Rainy River, Sioux Lookout, Thunder Bay, Dutton, Wardsville, Thamesville, Peterborough)
  • Groups that discriminate or restrict access based on things like race, colour, religion or creed, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability among others
  • Political or fraternal organizations, service clubs, or third-party organizations that raise funds for charity
  • Private (fee-based) elementary or secondary schools
  • Religious organizations, unless they are engaged in a significant project benefiting the entire community
  • Endowment or memorial campaigns
  • Conferences, events or golf tournaments
  • Advertising or promotional campaigns
  • Travel-related events, including student trips or tours
  • The creation or repair of statues, monuments, art work or beautification projects
  • The publication of books or movie productions
  • Private foundations
  • Sports teams (unless they are sponsored by a qualified donor)


The Financial Inclusion Grant Program will typically award grants of up to $40,000 to 1 or 2 organizations annually. Through this program, we are looking to identify innovative programs that will work to address issues of Financial Literacy and Financial Inclusion among underserved communities. Particular emphasis will be placed on initiatives that offer opportunities for scale and/or replication to other communities. Emphasis will also be placed on initiatives that offer broader opportunities for partnership with the Credit Union.

Eligibility:

Alterna’s Financial Inclusion Grant Program supports:


  • Registered Charities
  • Incorporated non-profit organizations
  • Co-operatives without share capital





  • Unincorporated associations are eligible with the sponsorship of an eligible incorporated organization. Alterna will only issue cheques to incorporated groups.
  • While membership in Alterna is not a requirement for grant funding, preference will be given to member organizations. Click Here to find out more about how your organization can benefit from membership at Alterna.


Application Process:

Step 1. Letter of Inquiry

If you have an idea that you think would be a good fit for the Financial Inclusion Grant Program please submit a maximum 2-page Letter of Inquiry detailing your initiative.

Step 2. Request for Proposal

Alterna will review all letters of inquiry and invite a limited number of organizations to submit full proposals for funding.

Step 3. Proposal Submission

Alterna will only consider proposals from organizations that have been invited to submit a full proposal based on their letter of inquiry.

Step 4. Application Review

Received proposals will be reviewed by an internal committee of Alterna staff. Proposals will be evaluated on a number of criteria including potential for replication or scale of the initiative, impact, measurable results.

Step 5. Grant Approval

Alterna will inform all applications as to the status of their application. Successful applications will be announced on Alterna website and social media.

Key Dates

  • Letter of Inquiry Deadline: Yet to be determined 
  • Proposal Deadline: Yet to be determined