The Hart House Good Ideas Fund (GIF) is here to support your good ideas and make them a reality! The GIF is open to student groups or students at any University of Toronto campus with an opportunity to be awarded up to $1000 to run your initiative.
If you have a great idea, project, or event that you think will address, draw attention to an issue, or build community, we want to hear from you!
Have a Good Idea but it’s not quite there yet? Our Good Ideas Fund Committee may be able to match you with other groups who have the same idea or suggest ways to get your idea to completion in time to submit your application.
What it covers
You can request up to $1,000 to support your initiative. You will design your own budget, and all approved applications must include a budget outline detailing how you intend to use your funds. Generally, we’re flexible in how you use your grant funds but encourage responsible money management. Budget items could include:
- Honoraria for guest speakers
- Invoices for workshop facilitators
- Paying for supplies, printing, or publication materials
- Food or other hospitality related expenses
- Accessibility, translation or transcription services
The Good Ideas Fund will not cover expenses for:
- Initiatives that are held off-campus
- Alcohol or alcohol-related expenses
- Initiatives from an applicant who is not a current U of T student
- Initiatives that are deemed exclusionary or discriminatory (for example, exclude a specific student group)
Who can apply
All current University of Toronto undergraduate and graduate students, including Transitional Year Programme and Woodsworth Bridging Program students, are eligible for the Good Ideas Fund.
Individuals or recognized student groups can apply. If you are applying as a student group, a designated member who is a current student must be listed as the primary contact.
Collaborative initiatives between student groups are highly encouraged to apply.
Hart House Student Committees and Clubs are not eligible for the Good Ideas Fund.
How to apply
There are three periods each year that ideas are reviewed and funded with one round per academic semester. In your initial Good Ideas Fund submission, you'll be asked for some brief information about you and your project, including an estimated cost or budget.
- Submission Form Opens: August 1, 2023
- Submission Form Deadline: October 1, 2023
- Submission Form Opens: November 1 2023
- Submission Form Deadline: January 8, 2024
- Submission Form Opens: March 1, 2024
- Submission Form Deadline: May 10, 2024
If your idea is selected, you’ll be notified by email shortly after the deadline date. You will be required to complete a full application that includes:
- Detailed or expanded information about your project. See our GIF Application Resource and Checklist Document to help you start thinking ahead. (coming soon)
- A detailed budget that outlines how you intend to use your funds.
A resource toolkit will be provided to each successful applicant to help you complete your idea. By accepting GIF funds, you’ll be expected to:
- Sign a Good Ideas Fund Agreement
- Participate in a meeting with our GIF Staff
- Manage your own funds and only use funds towards your GIF initiative
- Complete your initiative within the same academic year (ex. If you receive funding in November 2023, your initiative must take place before August 31st, 2024
- Provide Hart House with a report or a presentation about your project
- Include the Hart House logo on all promotional materials, such as social media posts, posters, websites, etc
- Complete a GIF feedback survey
In addition to funding, our GIF staff will arrange a meeting with you to discuss moving your Good Idea forward and assign a Hart House Student Ambassador to your project. GIF staff may also provide support to connect you to Hart House our campus services and provide planning resources.
How you receive your funds
Once a decision has been made by the Good Ideas Fund Committee, the selected initiatives will be notified. Initiatives not selected for funding will still be notified and may work with the GIF team on improving their application for the next funding deadline.
- You’ll receive your grant through a cheque issued by the Hart House Finance Office. Cheques will only be issued after the signed agreement and a Cheque Request Form have been completed and returned to Hart House GIF staff.
- Cheques will be available for pick-up at the Hart House Information Services Desk or mailed to your personal address on your Cheque Request Form
- For student groups, funds will be issued to the primary contact member of your organization (or a designated Treasurer)
- Please allow up to one month from application approval for the funds to be released
How Ideas are reviewed
The Good Ideas Fund Committee meets each academic semester to review idea submissions, review and approve applications based on the eligibility criteria. Applictions are reviewed and scored based on the following:
- How ideas fit within Hart Houses three priority categories
- How initiatives enhance or have a significant impact on student life on campus
- Practicality of the initiative and budget
- Number and quality of applications submitted during that funding period
Arts and Culture
Hart House is committed to the arts and various expressions of culture that take place on all three U of T campuses. Whether you’re a songwriter, rapper, novelist, photographer, or have another project that you think will address the central theme for the term, we want to support your event or project! For Example: a visual arts project in partnership with a community organization, etc.
As a central space and place on campus for student activity, Hart House seeks to support initiatives which bring communities together through dialogue. As a tool for social change, dialogue can be most effective when it acts as a convenor for different groups of people, perspectives, and beliefs, and is facilitated in a thoughtful way. For Example: bringing together international and domestic students into meaningful weekly dialogues with each other.
Hart House encourages exploration and participation in the multitude of ways in which students can build community and support their academic careers through wellness and wellness-related activities. For example: hosting a wheelchair basketball tournament.
The Good Ideas Fund Committee is comprised of a:
- Hart House Staff Advisor
- 2 GIF work study students
- 1 Hart House Student Ambassador
- 1 Hart House Student Committee or Club Member
- 3 student representatives from various colleges and faculties, including students at UTM and UTSC
The Committee provides constructive feedback on submitted applications, so even if your proposal isn’t successful in its first try, your ideas can be refined and submitted again in the future.
Interested in being on the Good Ideas Fund Committee? Please contact Owen (Yueyang) Gao.