Skip to main content
  • State of the Internet

CIRA is funding digital literacy, cybersecurity, and internet infrastructure projects through $1+ million fund

By Erica Howes
Communications Specialist

This year’s granting program is open to all Canadians, but preference will be given to internet-related projects that benefit students as well as rural, northern, and Indigenous communities.

OTTAWA, January 15, 2020  – The Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) is announcing the opening of its annual $1+ million Community Investment Program granting initiative for 2020. Beginning today, not-for-profits, charities, and researchers are invited to apply for funding that will improve the health and quality of Canada’s internet. Applicants have until Feb. 25, 2020 at 2 p.m. EST to submit their application online.

The Community Investment Program focuses on internet-related projects in Canada and awards grants of up to $100,000, including one grant of up to $250,000. To ensure support for digital projects in underserved areas and communities, this year’s granting cycle will give preference to initiatives that benefit students and rural, northern and Indigenous communities. CIRA is looking for projects in these four areas:

  • Infrastructure research or projects that improve internet speed, access, and costs.
  • Digital literacy tools, research, and training programs to develop digital skills.
  • Cybersecurity projects or research that promote users’ safety online.
  • Community leadership initiatives including events or research that engage Canadians in domestic internet policy issues.

Since 2014, CIRA’s Community Investment Program grants have provided $6.7 million in funding for 151 projects across Canada. To learn more about the program, funding categories, and projects that CIRA has supported in the past, head to  

Executive Quote

Who can apply?

Organizations recognized by the Canada Revenue Agency as registered charities

Not-for-profit organizations; and,

Academics and researchers affiliated with a Canadian university or college.

Applications for this round of funding will be accepted until 2 p.m. EST, February 25, 2020.

Examples of past projects awarded funding

  • CompuCorps’ Indige-preneurs program provides digital literacy workshops for Indigenous women focused on building an online business.
  • The Gwich’in Tribal Council and University of Alberta researchers created resources to support citizen decision-making regarding broadband deployment in the Northwest Territories.
  • SimpleCell is an infrastructure project that allows residents without high-speed internet to access it from their cell phones and mobile devices within the historical Francophone region of the Port au Port Peninsula in Newfoundland.

About CIRA and the Community Investment Program

CIRA is best known for our role managing the .CA domain on behalf of all Canadians. While this remains our primary mandate, as a member-based not-for-profit ourselves, we have a much broader goal to strengthen Canada’s internet. The Community Investment Program is one of our most valuable contributions toward this goal and funds projects in infrastructure, digital literacy, cybersecurity and community leadership. Every .CA domain name registered or renewed contributes to this program. To date, CIRA has supported 151 projects with over $6.7 million in contributions.