Grant FAQs

How Do I Apply?

The AFA has moved to GATE (Grant Administration Tracking and Evaluation) - an online grant application system. To make an application, you will require a GATE User ID and Password. Please e-mail at least five business days prior to the application deadline with the following information:

  • Legal name
  • Email address
  • Grant Stream you’re applying for

Once assigned, this User ID and Password will allow access to GATE for this and future applications to the AFA. Applications must be received prior to the commencement of the project. Late or incomplete applications will be deemed ineligible. For help with this application call 780-427-9968 or toll free 310-0000 during regular business hours before the application deadline.

How Much Money Is Available?

The AFA's annual budget is determined by the provincial government and provided through the Alberta Lottery Fund.

We receive around 2,200 applications annually, of which approximately 1,400 receive funding.

The amount of funds available for specific grants varies from year to year according to the priorities of the AFA Board. Contact the Arts Branch staff for budget information for specific grants.

How Should I Prepare My Application? What If I Have Questions?

Check the grant's application deadline to ensure it fits your project timelines. Then, complete the steps to obtain a GATE username and password. Visit the Grant Help and Resources page and select the grant you are applying for to see guidelines and a User Guide for submitting an application in GATE. All written information submitted with your application must be accurate and legible. It should also be concise and specific. Give yourself plenty of time. If you need help, contact our Arts Branch staff for further assistance.

How Are Grants Assessed?

Most of the AFA's grants are awarded in one of two ways, either through a competitive expert panel process or through formula calculation (e.g., successful applicants are eligible for a grant of X% of Y costs to a maximum of $Z).

Who Selects The Expert Panel?

Expert panel members are suggested to the AFA through a formal public nomination process. Any Albertan can nominate qualified jurors.

Expert panels are assembled as needed by Arts Branch staff. Expert panel members bring wide and varied experience to their decisions. Each expert panel member is composed with this in mind. Discipline experience, gender, and geographical representation are considered to create balance.

How Is An Application Assessed?

For expert panel assessed grant applications, award recommendations are based on four main factors: merit, impact, budget, and the applicant's ability to implement the proposed project or program. The expert panel's recommendations are forwarded to the AFA Board for review and approval, after which grants are issued to successful applicants. Application contents and results are kept confidential. Expert panel members are required to declare any conflict of interest and withdraw from adjudicating the application(s) in question.

How Long Until I Know The Outcome Of My Application?

Response time may vary depending on the type of grant; however, applicants generally receive the outcome of their applications within approximately four-six months of the grant deadline.

Can I Get Feedback On My Application After The Grants Have Been Awarded?

Feedback about specific applications is not available due to the sheer volume of applications per intake. General comments about the larger application sample for each grant stream are gathered by Department staff and made available to applicants. No specific comments about individual applications are recorded or made available to applicants. 

If I Am Unsuccessful, Can I Re-Apply With The Same Project To The Next Deadline?

Yes. If you do re-apply, a different expert panel will adjudicate your application. However, there is no guarantee of success. If you were unsuccessful with your initial application, we encourage you to seek consultative assistance from our Arts Branch staff to discuss what you can do to improve your next application.

What Are The Tax Implications For Individual Project Grant Recipients?

We strongly advise that you use the following information as a general guideline only and consult with your own accountant or tax advisor regarding your specific circumstances.

Individuals are required to report grants received as "other income" on their annual tax return. However, grants are generally exempt from taxable income and the grant recipient is eligible to claim expenses against grants received. Information on how to report your grant can be found through the Canadian Revenue Agency.