The program provides funds in the form of a grant and not a contribution agreement. Grants allow bands the flexibility to distribute funds according to their individual needs and priorities in meeting the cost of local government.

Program funding is distributed to First Nations based on a funding formula that takes into account a community’s size and services it manages. Grants focus on costs related to the administration of programs and services funded by the department.

The maximum funding available for each band is determined by the following seven components:

  • population according to place of residence (on-reserve and off-reserve population) as of December 31 of each year
  • total number of cases per month in the income security program
  • number and value of federal, provincial and territorial agreements
  • value of major capital projects
  • number of specialists required to deliver the services funded by INAC
  • type and value of the basic services funded by INAC (such as education, income support, economic development, infrastructure, band management)
  • geographic index (location based on remoteness and environmental conditions)

Find out more about these components and the funding formula in the Band Support Funding Program Policy.


Any First Nation (“Indian band” as defined by the Indian Act, RSC, 1985) whether or not they are located on a reserve.

How to Apply?

Recipients must complete an annual application form. To receive an increase in funding, renew a funding agreement or manage a new program, a new application form must be submitted.

When applying, use the First Nation Application for Indian Government Support Programs and follow the instructions. Please consult the Band Support Funding Program Policy for more information.

Submit a completed application to your regional office..

The department will review applications to determine the maximum eligible funding level for the new fiscal year.

For more information on how to develop governance capacity in your community, please consult Tools for Governance.

Funding Amount


Contact Information

Processing Fee




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