Catalyst Grants

The Catalyst Grants are one of the ways that the York-TD Community Engagement Centre (CEC) is working to deepen University-Community partnerships in Jane Finch. Started in 2014, we have awarded approximately $100,000 in partnership projects promoting access to post-secondary education, supporting community-based research and creating experiential education opportunities for students.  An Advisory committee composed of community stakeholders, York University Vice Provost and faculty are among the decision makers of grant recipients.

Catalyst Grant Criteria – Call for 2018/2019 Proposals
Information on past Catalyst Grants :
2014-15Project Name Project Summary
Brick by Brick A Pilot Study Building Infant for Mental Health Supports This initiative set out to improve infant and mother mental health by piloting a creative universal screening and support program that has been made for and with key Black Creek community partners.
Innovation Hub The Innovation Hub enabled the Jane-Finch community youth to experience academic disciplines and applications that would otherwise go unnoticed.
The TSNS Planning Group The TSNS Planning Group enabled the community to advocate for equitable distribution of resources and support.
Jane-Finch Environmental Justice Project This project sought to address the issues of environmental hazards embedded in the Jane-Finch community through collaborative urban planning at the community level, which is then linked to policy and decision-makers at the municipal level.
Deepening the Roots of the BCCF To innovate efforts to take ownership of Black Creek Community Farm in racialized communities. To also address racism in our food justice network.
2015-16Project Name Project Summary
STEM Pro Youth Series The goal was to create an educational outreach program that would engage Black Community youth and encourage learning in the areas of science and Engineering through a series of relevant workshops.
Creative Art Therapies to Deal with Stress and Mental Health Targeted at youth and York students from the Faculty of AMPD, workshops used various forms of creative art as a method of expression and coping.
Health, fitness and physical activity status of children (5-12) living in the Black Creek CommunityThe project aimed at providing a body of knowledge assessing body composition, muscle development and cardiovascular health measures of the target group to inform DCC Programming in the area.
International Development The project created workshops tailored to undergraduate International Development Studies and graduate Development Studies at York. It incorporated relevant aspects focusing on the multi-layered socio-economic challenges faced in the Black Creek Community.
Community Action Planning Group of York WEst (CAPG) The project aimed at organizing a design and planning workshop that would bring residents in the community together to give input to the development of the Metrolinx Maintenance and Storage Facility (MSF) located on prime property in the Jane Finch area.
Mediation Clinic Intensive To offer the Mediation Clinic Intensive to the Jane Finch Community at an accessible location so as to manage existing conflict and help resolve future conflicts.
2016-17Project NameProject Summary
Jane Finch Community Research Partnership (JFCRP)A one day community conference to address the challenges in accessing research conducted in and about the Jane Finch community. This was a follow-up to a successful workshop held in June 2016. The conference culminated in setting up the foundation for a community based research collection and a community based ethics process, guided by a central community-based steering committee.
Young Inventors InitiativeThis March Break program exposed youth in Jane Finch to the design and development of technology.
Temporary Employment Agencies in Jane and Finch Research ProjectOne of the barriers to progress in improving Temp Agency workplaces for workers in JF is that there is limited evidence available regarding violations by these Agencies. The awareness of a growing problem is based largely on anecdotal evidence. This research will identify who are violating agencies in JF - violation of workers rights by the agency or assigning workers to places that violate their rights - what violations are happening, how does it compare to other areas of Ontario, what are concerns of the residents, what is being done by the Ministry of Labour and other government agencies to respond, recommendations of what should be done instead. The project will be used to either determine a law/policy reform project that can serve as a solution to precarious working conditions or further educate the community about their rights as temp workers. It will aslo demonstrate to law students the importance of resident engagement and community lawyering as an aspect to their future careers as lawyers.
Making the ConnectionThis project focused on developing ways to increase the overall participation of young women within youth spaces in the Jane Finch community, first by understanding the issues and concerns young women face in accessing youth spaces and then by collaboratively creating strategies of inclusion and engagement for young women in community programs and drop-in spaces.
Parents Involved Support NetworkThe goals of this project were to support parent engagement in the Black Creek Community elementary and secondary schools and to establish an ongoing support network where parents can successfully engage in their children's education through access to resources, assistance in navigation of the system, and participation in regular activities and discussions with other parents in the community.
2017-18Project NameProject Summary
Photo VoiceThis series was dedicated to understanding the experiences of families in the Firgrove community facing relocation, the gaps in community supports, residents' expectations for community infrastructure and recommendations to improve the relocation and resettlement process.
Passion into ProfitThis joint collaboration between Back 2 Basickz and Launch YU is aimed at helping individuals obtain the skills and knowledge that they will need to pursue entrepreneurial roles.
Black Excellence Leadership Forum: Past, Present, and FutureAn African Canadian Leadership group at Emery Collegiate who mandate is to explore important issues such as anti-black racism in education, Afrocentric curricula, the eradication of negative stereotypes and Black youth and Black solidarity. It also includes; confidence building and leadership development, intercultural understanding and community service.
Internet Radio Station & Learning Beyond Adversity (LBA) EvaluationPEACH Internet Radio station provides 24 hour streaming of music and community-related segments that support local artists, agencies, and events that impact Jane-Finch catchment.

For more information on Catalyst Grant Awards please, feel free to contact us