Funding Opportunities

2021 Catalyst Grant Competition - CLOSED

catalyst grant competition

The Edwin S.H. Leong Centre for Healthy Children is committed to supporting multi-disciplinary teams of investigators to seize upon their most innovative, disruptive ideas and new avenues of inquiry that will have a major impact on child health equity. The theme of this year's competition is "Engaged Research for Child Health Equity". Catalyst Grants will be awarded to develop or use unique concepts, approaches or methodologies that have the potential to meaningfully improve outcomes and address inequities for children and their families. The studies within scope of this grant include those projects that engage communities whose well-being is most impacted by a number of social determinants of health and structural inequities and/or relevant policy makers focused on strategies to address inequities.

Awards will be granted following rigorous peer review by a Selection Committee drawn from across the University of Toronto and SickKids. In advance of reviewing full applications, there will be a Letter of Intent (LOI) stage to both vet potential applications for relevance and help foster potential collaboration of groups working on similar proposals.

Funding Request Guidelines

  • The proposed project must be related to equity in the health and well-being of children and their families with a focus on engaged research, as follows:

    • Community engaged research; and/or

    • Meaningful partnership with a policy end-user

  • Applicants must indicate a collaborative approach to the research, with multi-disciplinary investigators engaged in the work.

  • Applicants can request funding of up to $75,000 total for up to 2 years, with priority given to projects that can be completed in 1 year. Grants needing smaller amounts are very welcome and the committee will try to fund as many high-quality projects as possible. In exceptional circumstances, the maximum budget requested can be up to $125,000 for larger scope projects.

Eligibility & Allowable Expenses 

  • Principal Investigators must hold a faculty level appointment at the University of Toronto and be eligible to hold grants. Students, trainees and fellows without staff appointments may be listed as co-applicants or team members but cannot apply as principal applicants.

  • Principal Investigators and all team members must first register as Leong Centre members in order to qualify for funding.

  • More than one application can be submitted by the same applicant; however, priority will be given to funding as many distinct research groups as possible. A condition of the grant is that investigators commit to present findings at Leong Centre rounds and include acknowledgement of the Leong Centre in all associated presentations and publications.

  • Applicants successful at the LOI stage must submit a completed application by the deadline, using the template provided.

  • Applications must include the project outline, detailed budget and alignment with Leong Centre vision and mission. Incomplete or late applications will not be accepted.

  • Awards will be provided at the discretion of the Selection Committee and based on the grant criteria and the innovative nature of the project submissions.

  • Allowable expenses include trainee salaries, conferences and knowledge translation activities, equipment and open access journal fees, in adherence with the Tri-Agency (CIHR, NSERC & SSHRC) Financial Administration Guide.

Funding Request Process 

Letter of Intent – Due Friday October 1, 2021 - 12 (noon) EDT 

Full Application – Due Friday December 3, 2021  - 12 (noon) EST

For applicants successful at the Letter of Intent stage, the deadline for complete final applications is Friday December 3, 2021. Notice of awards will be delivered in January 2022.

Adjudication Process 

  • Applications will be reviewed by the Selection Committee; ad hoc reviewers may be included in the review process as subject matter experts.
  • Result of funding decision will be provided by the Leong Centre Administrative Coordinator.
  • If a Selection Committee member wishes to apply, they will be excused from the adjudication process for that application and a replacement Committee member will be appointed.
  • Multi-disciplinary research is strongly encouraged including involvement of team members outside of the department or faculty of the Principal Investigator. Applications for projects that build on existing research infrastructure are welcome.

Past Competition Themes

2020: "Equity in the health and well-being of children and their families in the context of COVID-19"