Project Support

The Bow River Basin Council has been established to help Albertans protect and conserve the waters, both surface and groundwater, of the Bow River Basin. The Council will partner with individuals, groups, corporations, academics and environmental organizations to provide the highest possible protection for the Bow River Watershed.

Application Eligibility Guidelines

Applicants for funding must be registered as, or partner with, a not-for-profit organization in Alberta. All recipients of Council funding must be qualified donees (as defined in the Income Tax Act). The following list provides some guidance on eligibility; however, each applicant must verify that they qualify in accordance with this requirement.


  • Registered Charities (including qualifying)

    - Canadian Universities

    - Community associations

    - School groups

    - Youth groups

    - Non-government organizations

    - Environmental organizations

    - Canadian municipalities

1. If partnering with a qualified done isn’t possible, the applicant may choose to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Bow River Basin Council. An MOU is a formal, but not legally binding agreement that can be used to establish a partnership for the purposes of completing a project

2. Alternately, if the applicant chooses there can be a contracted (fee for service) arrangement. This type of arrangement will require clear deliverables and the payment schedule will be adjusted accordingly, and there will be the associated delays in payment pending completion of the contracted work

Project Funding Criteria

The Bow River Basin Council provides financial support to groups that improve the Bow River Basin through ecological, cultural and recreational projects. Its ultimate goal is to fund projects that will help the Bow River Basin achieve the highest water quality of any highly populated river basin in Canada.

Projects sponsored by the Council will involve some form of public participation and result in a measurable improvement in the Bow River Basin.

Funding applications will be assessed on the following criteria;

  1. Project alignment with BRBC principles, values and priorities (BRBC Principles and Values can be found in the BRBC Administration Manual; current priorities are in the (3-year) Business Plan).
  2. Project alignment with the 3 main goals of the Water For Life Strategy (Healthy aquatic ecosystems; Reliable, quality water supplies for a sustainable economy; Safe, secure drinking water)
  3. The importance of the project in the Basin (need)
  4. Community support and participation in the project (letters of support)
  5. Groups participation and collaboration with the BRBC
  6. Groups capacity and past accomplishments 
  7. Available matching funds and capacity to leverage
  8. Sustainability of the project (need for future support)
  9. Budget and reasonable cost estimates


  • Fish & Wildlife Studies
  • Educational Initiatives
  • Stream Ecology
  • Water Quality Evaluations
  • Water Orientated Recreational Studies
  • River Cleanup Initiatives
  • Eco-Tourism

Applicants must demonstrate that there is a need for the project.

Contribution Limit

The Bow River Basin Council will limit its contribution to $10,000. It will fund up to 50% of the total projected budget of a project. Example: If a project has a total budget forecast of $15,000, the Council may fund up to $7,500. Contribution amount includes all taxes including G.S.T.. 

Funding for projects will be variable and subject to the current financial condition of the BRBC. For more information on the potential status of funding, please contact the Bow River Basin Council, Tel: (403) 268.4596.

Matching Contribution

The applicant must match or exceed the requested funds in any combination of the following:

  • Volunteer labour at fair market value;
  • Cash contributions from other partners;
  • In-kind donations of materials or services.

Use of Funds

Council funds can be applied to reasonable costs directly related to the projects operating budget such as:

  • Salaries
  • Office space
  • Project administration
  • Travel and accommodation
  • Capital expenditures (must show a valid need)


How to Apply

Applicants must submit:

  1. Three letters of reference from other organizations
  2. Completed pdf Application Form for Funding (26.07 kB) (69 KB)
  3. A detailed proposal.

Your proposal will address the following questions in detail:

  • You or your organization's background, including a brief description of its main services or activities;
  • Your organization's founding date and membership number;
  • The project's background;
  • The project's objectives;
  • How the project fits into your organizations strategy;
  • The need for the proposed project;
  • Your partnerships with other organizations;
  • Benefits to the Bow River Basin;
  • Work involved, (i.e. describe the operation of the project);
  • Amount of public participation or consultation
  • Letters of support and confirmation of other funding;
  • Methods of project evaluation, (i.e. how achievements will be measured);
  • A detailed budget, breaking down all expected expenditures.


In the interests of sound environmental stewardship, we encourage that applicants use both sides of the paper and limit unnecessary material from the application. These same stewardship principles must be displayed in all components of project execution.

Application Deadlines

Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis. Responses to funding applications will be provided as quickly as possible. But please anticipate a wait of 4-6 weeks.

Reporting Guidelines

The Council's support is subject to certain conditions, and monitoring and reporting requirements are necessary. Each project may be required to provide quarterly financial reports that will identify the progress being made and funds being utilized. Upon the completion of the project a final report, with a complete financial statement, will be presented to the Council's Board of Directors within 30 days. In lieu of a written report you may be invited to make a presentation to a BRBC Quarterly Educational Forum.

Successful Grants may be subject to certain conditions established at the time the grant is awarded. These conditions will be discussed with the recipient.

Contributions will be provided on the following basis:

  • 70 % at the beginning of the project
  • 30 % following the acceptance of the final report

If you have any questions about the application process or whether your project fits the funding criteria, please contact the Bow River Basin Council. Tel: (403) 268.4596

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