You are here

Systems Change Grants

Status: Grants have been awarded.

Systems Change Grants: Overview

Click to watch the video above, or visit:

UPDATE: Sept. 22, 2022

Over the last three years, we’ve experienced a global pandemic, the effects of an increasingly urgent climate crisis, and ongoing violence and systemic discrimination against equity-denied communities. We know many of Vancouver Foundation’s current systems change grantees have had to pivot and rethink their approaches to their systems change work in response to this context. 

As part of Vancouver Foundation’s efforts to embody the principles and practices of trust-based philanthropy, we are seeking to deepen the relationships we have with grantees by offering a small amount of additional funding to those whose funding ended in 2020 or 2021. Our goal is to learn more about their work and to help sustain the momentum of previously funded systems change work where prior funding has ended, and additional funding is needed.  

We know the last few years have been challenging for the sector and funding is critical. In the meantime, we hope you’ll consider applying for a Recovery and Resiliency Fund (applications close October 5) while we develop our granting strategy for 2023. 

This funding opportunity is by invitation. If you have any questions, please contact:

In the meantime, please sign up to receive email alerts about other granting opportunities by clicking here

Systems Change Grants support projects that take action to address the root causes of pressing social, environmental or cultural issues by influencing the behaviours of populations, organizations, and institutions. What does this mean? Systems thinking takes a step back and looks at the bigger picture. Systems change projects tackle the root causes of issues by disrupting the ways that systems work – sometimes this means challenging the way things have worked for generations. We also support work that benefits communities and populations as a whole. Why? Because we believe that this helps contribute to meaningful and lasting change.

In 2018, we commissioned an external evaluation of this grant program to better understand if and how it is contributing to creating the conditions for social innovation and systems change to develop, test and scale. Download the summary and full report to learn more.
Systems Change Grants fund charitable projects in and across any sector. In addition, some of our funding is to specific sectors: social services, children and youth services, health, vocational or technical training, education, arts and culture, environment, and animal welfare. But no matter the issue area, systems change projects must be led by a registered charity or other qualified donee listed by Canada Revenue Agency.


If you have questions about this granting stream, please contact us at