The Energy Futures Youth Seed Fund provides Albertans aged 18-30 access to low-barrier financial support for projects or initiatives that help accelerate the transition to the energy system the future requires of us.

With $50,000 in total eligible grants, our goal with this program is to support projects initiated, led, and organized by young people. Grants range from $200-$2500. We’re looking for your creativity and passion to help enable a just and sustainable energy transition.

Learn how to receive funding to support your project!

What is a Just and Sustainable Energy Transition

Energy transition is about more than just reaching net-zero emissions targets. While enabling a low-emissions future is critical, we must also consider how people from across all demographics will fit into the new systems we’re working to create.

The Government of Canada defines just transition as an approach to economic, environmental and social policy that aims to create an equitable and prosperous future for workers and communities as the world builds a low-carbon economy.

Meanwhile, the EFL considers a sustainable transition to be one that aligns with The Four System Conditions of a Sustainable Society.

A just and sustainable energy transition, therefore, focuses on people, economy and climate.

Who Should Apply?

The Energy Futures Youth Seed Fund is open to applications that meet the following criteria:

  • The Lead Applicant is aged 18-30 years old at time of application. Teams/groups are encouraged to apply – just select one person as your Lead Applicant.
  • The project takes place in Alberta and/or engages Albertans and makes tangible steps towards a more just and sustainable energy system.
  • If the project is conducted or hosted by a formal organization, the project itself must be led and run by youth aged 18-30.
  • Applications must be completed and submitted through our application system before the stated deadline(s).
  • The funded activities can be completed (and reported on) before September 1, 2022.

Activities that are not eligible for this funding include:

  • Political campaigns or partisan activities;
  • Direct religious activity;
  • Academic research;
  • Conference attendance;
  • Benefit only one individual; or
  • Have already occurred.

How to apply

  1. Read through the FAQs to understand more about the granting process, and to determine if you and your project idea(s) are eligible.
  2. Fill out the application form below. Be sure to answer the questions as thoroughly as possible. Review your answers before submitting, and be sure to submit on time.

If you have any questions regarding your application, you may connect with our Youth Seed Fund coordinator John Gould at jgould@naturalstep.ca.

Application Rounds:

 

Applications Open

Applications Close

Notification of Results

Application

Round 1

October 4, 2021

November 7, 2021

December 1, 2021

Apply here

Round 2

December 1, 2021

February 6, 2021

March 1, 2022

Currently closed

FAQs:

What is the rationale behind the EFL’s definition of youth?
There is no single definition of “youth.” This means that we need to consider our strengths and weaknesses, keeping those in mind as we design new programs. While we’d love to support everyone, the EFL is best designed to support young and emerging professionals working on initiatives that are directly impacted by, impacting, or influencing the energy system in Alberta. We feel the 18-30 age range captures a large cross-section of those young Albertans.
I will be considered a youth prior to the application deadline but not within the funding period. Can I still apply?
Yes, as long as you are with the age range at the time of application, you are welcome to apply.
I am not a youth but I am involved in work that focuses on or engages youth. Can I still apply?
No, you cannot apply as a Lead Applicant. If you are working alongside one or more youth who are aged 18-30 and who are meaningfully involved in the leadership of the project, we suggest that you inquire if one of those youth would like to be the Lead Applicant.
Other than being considered a youth, is there any other criteria that applicants should be aware of before applying?
Yes, there are several criteria to keep in mind: (1) You should ensure that your project is aligned with the objectives of the Energy Futures Youth Seed Fund project, which is to contribute to a just and sustainable energy transition. (2) The project should take place in Alberta and/or engage Albertans as a key activity. (3) The activities funded must be completed by September 1, 2022.
What makes a strong application?
We recommend that you have a thorough project plan and outline to help you organize your thoughts before completing the application. Consider desired key outcomes, timelines, and the required costs associated with your activities. Have a peer or advisor read your project plan to ensure that it’s clear and understandable by others with an outside perspective.

Strong applications will make a clear and direct link to the objectives of the fund – a contribution to a just and sustainable energy transition in Alberta.

Applications that come from teams or groups can often be stronger, as you can rely on more people’s perspectives and areas of expertise. Similarly, working alongside or in collaboration with other organizational partners who are connected to the challenge(s) often creates a more robust response to the challenges identified.

Applicants with previous direct experience related to the issue(s) or challenge(s) that you wish to tackle in the project enhance your likelihood of success, and thus strength of application. Be careful to ensure that you have adequately co-designed and/or consulted with your intended beneficiaries to ensure that you understand the real needs of these affected communities.

Consider if there are other groups or organizations who might be doing similar work. Is there an opportunity to collaborate? How would your project be differentiated or distinct from efforts that are already underway?

When will we receive a response?
We intend to provide you with an answer on your application no more than 4 weeks after the application deadline. See Application Rounds above.
I’m funded! Now what?
Congratulations! When we write to tell you the good news, we’ll ask you for a few things: (1) A signed agreement, indicating your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of the grant. (2) A survey to help us collect some basic demographic information on you and your team members. (3) Your banking information, for direct deposit of the funding.

If your total grant is less than $500, we will disperse the funding in one instalment. Expect to receive the funds two weeks after you’ve followed up with the requests described above. If your total grant is more than $500, we will disperse the funding in two instalments: 50% within two weeks of your approved funding request , and 50% upon completion of the project or 6 months later, whichever comes first.

Will we have to report on how we allocate the funds?
Yes, we will arrange a short check-in conversation with the Lead Applicant a few months after the initial instalment has been made. See this more as a conversation rather than a report. We will look to you to share how things are going and together we can discuss if there are ways that the Energy Futures Lab platform can help your work.

Once completed, we’d love to profile you and your project on our website and/or social media channels. We encourage you to share your news with us – both your successes and challenges!

Can I connect with someone at your organization about my application?
Yes, please get in touch with us at jgould@naturalstep.ca

About the Energy Futures Lab

We are an Alberta-based coalition of diverse innovators and leading organizations working together to accelerate the transition to the energy system the future requires of us.

As a trusted convenor, connector, and catalyzer of innovative energy system initiatives and solutions, our platform supports change-makers as they collaboratively explore the following question:

How can we leverage our leadership position in today’s energy system to create the energy system that the future requires of us?

Learn more about how the Energy Futures Lab takes action to accelerate the transition to the energy system the future requires of us.