Sport Relief Fund

Safely Returning to Sport and Play

COVID-19 has had a significant impact on community sports and recreation, increasing the barriers to participation faced by Canada’s most vulnerable children and youth. This is why we are launching the Jumpstart Sport Relief Fund – an $8 million fund that will help sport and recreation organizations continue to deliver programming in 2020 and beyond. 

This fund will provide two streams of needs-based support to eligible organizations.

Programming Support

Assists organizations with the costs of running sport and recreational programming, including:

  • Additional hiring of coaches, instructors, or other program supervisors;
  • Meeting return to play guidelines/provincial health protocols/regulations (e.g., PPE, cleaning supplies, individual equipment for participants, etc.); and
  • Facility and transportation cost increases.

Operational Support

Assists organizations with operational and administrative costs, including:

  • Rehiring staff, new employees to meet changing needs, repayment of past due accounts;
  • Staff training and development, fundraising/revenue generation strategy and development, and operational efficiencies; and
  • Equipment procurement, personal protective equipment, space reconfiguration, and program delivery adaptations (including start-up expenses related to establishing online programming).
  • Organizations can apply for an operational support and capacity building grant up to $15,000. If approved, the grant value that will be awarded is subject to regional demands and budgets.

Application evaluation Panel

We are pleased to have a panel of distinguished external reviewers to support the evaluation and approval of the Jumpstart Sport Relief Fund grants.

Photo of Beckie Scott


Olympic Gold Medallist and CEO of Spirit North

Beckie Scott retired in 2006 as Canada’s most decorated cross-country ski racer in the history of the sport. A three-time Olympian, Beckie won gold in Salt Lake City in 2002, becoming the first Canadian (and first North American woman) to win an Olympic medal in cross-country skiing. She followed that up with Olympic silver in 2006, and a record 17 World Cup podium finishes. In the final year of her career, she finished second in the Overall World Cup Standings.

On retirement, Beckie was elected to the International Olympic Committee’s Athlete Commission for an eight-year term. A widely respected leader in anti-doping, Beckie served as Chair of the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Athlete Committee from 2013-2019. Beckie is recognized globally for her advocacy and work on behalf of athletes’ rights and clean, fair, doping-free sport.

Beckie is an Officer of the Order of Canada, and an inducted member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame, Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame and the Canadian Ski Hall of Fame. She is a member of the Alberta Order of Excellence, holds Honorary Doctorate of Law degrees from the Universities of Alberta and British Columbia and frequently works for CBC Sports as a broadcast analyst.

Beckie is the founder and CEO of Spirit North, an organization committed to improving the lives of Indigenous children and youth through the transformative power of sport and play. Spirit North is recognized as one of Canada’s leading sport-for-social-development organizations.

Photo of Dr. Cheri L. Bradish


Chair, Loretta Rogers Research in Sport Marketing, Ryerson University  

Dr. Cheri L. Bradish was the Loretta Rogers Research Chair in Sport Marketing with the Ted Rogers School of Management from 2013-2018. She is currently Director of the Future of Sport Lab and Chair of Marketing Management. She comes to Ryerson after sixteen years at Brock University where she was the first faculty hire and founder of their successful Bachelor of Sport Management (BSM) degree. At Brock, she served in a number of leadership roles during her tenure, including in the Chair capacity. A sport marketing expert, her area of scholarship interest is with regards to sport business strategy and trends including innovation and entrepreneurship, sport and social impact, and women in sport leadership.

Among a number of conference proceedings and publications, her research has appeared in leading journals including: the Journal of Sport Management, the International Journal of Sport Management and Marketing, the Sport Management Review and the Sport Marketing Quarterly. Cheri also has significant experience in the sport industry, including work with the Florida Sports Foundation, Nike Canada Inc., Florida State University Department of Athletics (NCAA), Vancouver Grizzlies (NBA), and the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games (VANOC). She has been widely acknowledged for her teaching, receiving the 2013 Brock University Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching; and in 2011 was chosen as the Canadian Olympic Committee’s representative to attend the International Olympic Academy (IOA) Session for Educators of Higher Institutes of Physical Education in Ancient Olympia, Greece. In 2017, she received a Research Recognition Award from the Ted Rogers School of Management. She is a member of the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Girls in Sport (CAAWS) Board of Directors, as well as a former varsity athlete (volleyball) at the University of Guelph (Ryerson University Communications, 2016).

Photo of Norm O'Reilly


Director, International Institute for Sport Business and Leadership 

Norm O’Reilly is recognized as one of the leading scholars in the business of sports. He is currently Professor and Assistant Dean of Executive Programs in the College of Business & Economics at the University of Guelph. Dr. O’Reilly is also the founding Director of the International Institute for Sport Business & Leadership at Guelph, a think-tank devoted to improving the sport business globally.

He was previously the Richard P. and Joan S. Fox Professor of Business and Chair of the Department of Sports Administration at Ohio University’s College of Business. Dr. O’Reilly has expertise in a range of business topics, including analytics, marketing, sponsorship, social media, sport finance, social marketing, tourism management, and management education. He has authored or co-authored eight books, 14 case studies in the Harvard/Stanford series, and more than 100 peer-reviewed journal articles. Dr. O’Reilly is the lead researcher on the Canadian Sponsorship Landscape Study, a highlight of the annual Canadian Sponsorship Forum since 2007, currently in its twelfth edition. 

Photo of Benoît Huot


Paralympic Gold Medallist and Jumpstart Ambassador


  • 20-time Paralympic medalist (9 golds)
  • Flag bearer closing ceremonies 2012 Paralympic Games in London
  • 9-time Athlete of the Year by Swimming Canada
  • Diamond Jubilee Medal of Queen Elizabeth II (2012)
  • Inducted into the Hall of Fame for people with disabilities

Member of the Order of Canada, Benoît Huot C.M., was born with a disability in his right leg commonly known as clubfoot. It never slowed him down in everyday life and even started swimming at the age of 8 years. Over 2 decades, he became one of Canada's most decorated Paralympic athletes with 20 medals in five Paralympic Games, 9 of which were Gold.

He was an active member of the Canadian national swim team from 1998 until his retirement in January 2019. He has won 32 medals in six World Championships, lowering more than 60 world records in his category, and he had the honour of carrying the Canadian flag at the closing ceremonies of the 2012 Paralympic Games in London.

Ben is very involved in various causes involving youth, physical activity, accessibility, inclusion and sport. He is an avid ambassador for Canadian Tire Jumpstart and his biggest dreams are now to help the next generation, to inspire others to look beyond their own boundaries and motivate anyone who aims to realize their dreams, which he does well by sharing his passion for life.

Benoit completed his MBA at the Smith School of Business at Queen’s University in December 2019. He and his partner Annie welcomed their first child, Mila-Grace, in September of 2018.

Swimmer Benoît Huot’s accomplishments include 20 Paralympic Game medals, 32 World Championship medals, and the Diamond Jubilee Medal of Queen Elizabeth II.

Photo of Fabrice Vil


Founder and Executive Director, Pour 3 Points

Fabrice Vil is a certified integral development coach, participative agility practitioner, lawyer and former basketball coach. In 2011, he founded Pour 3 Points, an organization which transforms sports coaches so that they also play the role of life coaches with young sportspeople in disadvantaged areas. Driven by equal opportunities, he regularly speaks on issues that concern this ideal, notably as a columnist at La Presse +, speaker and facilitator of business workshops.

Fabrice is fascinated by the question of human conscience. He wishes that people were curious about the invisible violence in which they participate and that they respond with more kindness to themselves and to others.

Photo by Alain Wong.


Eligible Organizations

To be eligible for a Jumpstart Sport Relief Fund Grant, applicants must be qualified donees as defined by the Canada Revenue Agency. 

Program Eligibility

The Jumpstart Sport Relief Fund will prioritize programs and activities that address systemic barriers to sport & play in the following communities:  

  • Children with disabilities, 
  • Girls and young women, 
  • BIPOC children and youth, and 
  • Families in financial need.

Eligible programs should meet the following requirements:

  • Program must start between September 1 to December 31, 2020
  • Run for a minimum of 5 hours total
  • Consist of at least 5 sessions
  • Include participants aged 4–18 years old

Funding Details and tIMELINES

Funding Timelines

Applications will be accepted from September 12th to October 4th, 2020. Applications will not be accepted after 11:59pm PDT on October 4th, 2020. Grant applicants will be informed of the final decisions the week of October 11th, 2020.


The approved funding will be disbursed in a single installment, triggered upon program approval. 


All approved grants will be required to submit a final report. 


Please check the General Jumpstart Grant Information to answer any questions about the grant application system.

If you have questions about your application please email

Apply Now

Click the button below to be access our online application portal. Please ensure you have reviewed all information on this page before applying.