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NEED HELP? Call the FREE 24/7 Mental Health Help Line at 1-877-303-2642

The Rural Mental Health Community Grants program offers funding to community-based projects that promote mental health and wellbeing in rural and remote communities across Alberta.

Through the Community Grants, the Rural Mental Health Project works to: 

  • Support Animators in their ongoing work to identify local priorities, develop action plans, and implement community-based mental health promotion strategies, with an emphasis on involving diverse voices in the planning and decision-making; 
  • Expand and strengthen the Rural Mental Health Network by connecting Animators, community members, communities, and other partners to leverage their unique strengths and assets; 
  • Promote equitable access to resources and funding in rural and remote communities, with an emphasis on capacity building; and
  • Reinforce the Rural Mental Health Project’s Guiding Principles

Grants are only available to rural communities who have a trained Community Animator. If you are not yet involved with the Rural Mental Health Project, visit our About page to learn more and then fill out the Expression of Interest to start training. 



To be eligible to apply, communities must have an active Animator (who has completed all 7 training modules) and a Backbone organization. The Animator must be involved in the planning and implementation of the proposal and project.

  • Animators from the pilot communities may need supplemental information to complete the application because the training curriculum has been revised.


The Backbone Organization must be a Non-Profit, Registered Charity, or affiliated with a local government (i.e., FCSS Office, First Nation, Métis Settlement, Municipality, Municipal District, or Special Area).

  • A for-profit entity cannot serve as the Backbone.
  • AHS and Health Advisory Councils are not able to be Backbone Organizations.

If the Animator works for the Backbone Organization, we require someone else with signing authority (who is not directly supervised by the Animator) to be the Backbone Contact.

  • The Animator cannot be the sole director of a non-audited organization. If this is the case, a new Backbone Organization will have to be chosen. Contact us if you have questions or need support finding an eligible Backbone Organization.

Non-audited organizations will have additional financial reporting requirements.


Projects focusing exclusively on existing service provision (e.g., clinical forms of counselling) are not eligible.

Pre-existing programs are not eligible for funding, but Animators may apply to expand on an existing community-driven program.

Communities funded in the pilot year (2021) are eligible to apply for funding again in this grant cycle (2022) for a new project or an expansion of their initial project. Additional funding is not guaranteed.

  • Funding to expand on an existing RMH-funded project is dependent on demonstrating the growth and impact of the initial project.
  • Funding for past Recipients will also be dependent on the quality of reporting received throughout the initial grant term.

Grant term length is 1 year. Each applicant/community may only receive one grant per funding cycle.

Projects must be tailored to specific communities, taking the local context into account to build on a community’s unique strengths and assets (i.e., cannot copy-paste same project across several communities in the same county).

  • Animators are encouraged to submit an application together for a Multi-Community Grant if their respective communities will benefit from the same project, however they must demonstrate that their project is collaborative and community-led. Every community in the partnership must have a trained Animator who is involved in the project.

All projects must adhere to applicable municipal, provincial, and federal guidelines regarding COVID-19 safety.

Consult the Application Guidelines for a full list of eligible and ineligible expenses.



There are three granting streams available:


Up to $5,000

Download Application Form

The Microgrant is intended for individual communities seeking to implement small-scale projects to support Animators’ work in their community. The application process involves a shorter, streamlined application form to reflect the smaller amount of funds requested.


$5,001 to $40,000

Download Application Form

The Individual Community Grant is intended for individual communities seeking to implement medium- to large-scale projects in their community. The application process for an Individual Grant is more comprehensive than the Microgrant.


$5,001 to $50,000

Download Application Form

The Multi-Community Grant involves partnerships between Animators in different communities who are teaming up to create a broader or regional project that will support their respective communities. This stream aims to foster collaboration and allow Animators to work together and leverage each other’s strengths and assets on a broader scale. Each community in the partnership must have a trained Animator who is involved in the project.



Before submitting your application to the Rural Mental Health Community Grants, please consult the Application Guidelines and Adjudication Criteria to ensure you have filled out your application correctly. Check that you are using the correct Application Form for the Granting Stream your project fits into.