Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) provides funding through the First Nations Environmental Contaminants Program (FNECP) to help First Nations communities improve their health.

The FNECP supports communities in identifying, investigating and characterizing the impact of exposure to environmental hazards. Its activities include community-based research, monitoring, risk assessment, risk communication and knowledge integration.

There are four types of proposals that can be submitted: 

  • Primary research proposals
    • Project should be focused on an environmental hazard’s identification, investigation and characterization
    • Project should collect sufficient information on the levels of the environmental contaminants of concern as well as the routes humans can be/are exposed
    • Must be achievable within 2 years
    • Selected proposals can receive up to $125,000 per project in funding over two years
  • Knowledge integration proposals
    • Secondary research that integrates existing scientific data and community-based knowledge sources on risk assessment and risk communication exposure to First Nations
    • Can be used to support knowledge integration about an environmental public health issue or hazard of concern. In this case, could be submitted a year prior to a Primary Research Proposal.
  • Risk communication proposals
    • Can be used for communication of the results of previously completed primary research to increase First Nations’ awareness of the new knowledge and its implications for human health
    • Selected proposals can receive up to $25,000 per project over one year
  • Baseline Assessment Proposals on the state of Health and the Environment (BAPHE)
    • Strengthen First Nations’ capacity for Impact Assessments
    • Supports First Nations assessing the baseline health and environment status of their community prior to the implementation of planned large-scale industrial projects, and the health impacts the projects may have on the community
    • Maximum project length is 2 years
    • Selected proposals can receive up to $125,000 per project in funding over two years

Knowledge Integration and Risk Communication proposals cannot be combined with a primary research proposal or the BAPHE component.

Only one proposal per First Nation will be accepted, and no more than two proposals from the same Principal investigator/research team will be accepted.

Who can apply for funding?

  • First Nations communities (on-reserve) and First Nations organizations south of 60° parallel in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Québec and Atlantic Canada
  • Bands, Districts, Tribal Councils and Associations, Councils, governments of self-governing First Nation communities and regions
  • non-government and voluntary associations and organizations, including non-profit corporations that work on behalf of or in partnership with entities detailed in 1) and/or 2)

What contaminants are included?

Any chemical or biological contaminants that are of concern to First Nations communities can be included in your proposal, based on potential human health risk due to exposure. This risk must be articulated and justified in the proposal. This includes chemical, biological, and radiological hazards.

For a complete list of contaminants of primary concern, click here.

The FNECP program requires that:

  • primary research or BAPHE projects be carried out in partnership with academically trained scientists (a PhD or MSc-level) with a track record of peer-reviewed publications in the field of the proposed project
  • knowledge integration projects be carried out in partnership with a project lead with at least a Bachelor’s degree in environmental sciences, health sciences or education
  • risk communication projects be carried out in partnership with academically trained experts (at least a BSc or MSc -level) with proven experience in conducting risk communication in the field of the proposed project
  • the scientific/academic partner(s) must be identified in the proposal.


The deadline to apply is October 21, 2022 (until 12:59 am on October 22, 2022 Central Standard Time).

Proposal Requirements: 

  • No longer than 20 single-sided pages, plus cover page, appendices and resumes/CVs
  • Written in English or French
  • Typed in size 12 font formatted for 8.5″ x 11″ size paper
  • Post-dated before the deadline

Submit the completed proposal to the First Nations Environmental Contaminants Program via email, fax, or a hard copy sent in the mail. Their contact information is below.

Click here to find out how the proposals will be evaluated.

For more information or to submit your proposal, contact the First Nations Environmental Contaminants Program: 

  • By email: [email protected]
  • By phone: 613-293-5517
  • By fax: 613-952-8639
  • By Mail:
    • First Nations Environmental Contaminants Program
      Environmental Public Health Division
      Office of Population and Public Health
      Population Health and Primary Care Directorate
      First Nations and Inuit Health Branch
      Indigenous Services Canada
      A.L. 1919D
      10 Wellington Street, Suite 1455,
      Gatineau, QC, K1A 0H4


  • Successful applicants will be notified by March 15, 2023.
  • The Minister must be given 60 days to review any reports of environmental analysis, findings or recommendations before sharing them with the public or media.
  • FNECP funded projects that are still in progress cannot apply for new/additional funding for the same or similar project until its conclusion and the project report on the analysis of results has been submitted and approved by the program.