Regional Enhancement Fund

Western Fair District Regional Enhancement Fund

Please be advised that ALL applications must be received by 11:59pm on March 31st, 2019.

Be sure to check this site for any further updates.

The following provides the criteria and process for those that wish to submit an application to the Regional Enhancement Fund (REF) Program previously known as the Community Enhancement Fund.  

If you have any questions please contact us at Responses will be provided from Monday – Friday between 8:00am & 5:00pm.

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All applications must be received by 11:59pm on March 31, 2019. No late submissions will be accepted.



The Western Fair Association started as an agricultural fair held for the western region of Ontario almost a century-and-a-half ago and continues to enrich the communities it serves as a prominent year-round agriculture, entertainment, education and recreation destination. 



The REF is intended to provide funding to Not for Profit or Registered Charitable organizations within the counties of (Bruce, Grey, Huron, Perth, Oxford, Middlesex, Elgin, Lambton, Chatham/Kent, and Essex) in support of capital projects that align with Western Fair District’s (WFD) mandate as an agricultural society.  

WFD’s broad objective according to our mission statement is to provide programs, events and facilities that meet the educational, recreational and entertainment needs of the community with a primary focus on agricultural education and awareness.


The total amount of funding available to the REF in any given WFD fiscal year is at the discretion of the WFD Board of Governors. Awarding of grants cannot exceed the annually approved amount of up to $100,000.00. Grants/Donations will be awarded by its REF Donation Committee (REFDC).  Not all grant requests will be approved and the REFDC may elect to fund less than the applicant’s requested donation amount.  

As such, the REFDC has established the following criteria:

  • Applicant must be a Not-for-Profit group and/or a Registered Charitable organization.  
  • The Capital Project must be within the counties of: Bruce, Grey, Huron, Perth, Oxford, Middlesex, Elgin, Lambton, Chatham/Kent, and Essex.
  • REF supported projects must be capital in nature - improvement and/or repair to grounds and/or buildings OR the purchase of equipment, owned and used by the organization seeking funding. Improvement/repair projects must be permanent in nature. HST can be included.
  • Projects must align with WFD’s broad mandate.
    • Encourage the awareness of agriculture, and promote improvements in the quality of life of persons living in agricultural communities.
    • Promote and support educational and information initiatives relating to agriculture and community.
    • Promote conservation and environmental initiatives and awareness.
    • Develop and foster community spirit, support community endeavours and promote the best interest of the community generally.
    • Promote industry arts and science generally.
  • There is a maximum amount of $100,000.00 for two donation periods in one year. Donation requests cannot exceed $100,000.00 for the donation period. 
  • Multiple small donations may be awarded (eg. $5,000.00 - $25,000.00) of the full capacity of the fund per year ($100,000.00)
  • Preference will be given to recipients who are not receiving the majority of funding for the capital project from Municipal, Federal or Provincial grants.



  1. All applications must be filed through the online application form located here.
  2. Annually from July 1 – June 30 there is one application deadline March 31st, 2019.

  3. Potential funding recipients must complete the entire application form, and submit it with the required backup documentation before being considered by the REFDC.
  4. All applications must be accompanied by a copy of your organization’s most recent audited financials OR external review.
  5. All applicants must be available to attend a REFDC meeting (if required).
  6. All applicants will be notified by email regarding approval status, and once approved, successful applicants will receive the funding at a mutually agreed upon time.
  7. Upon approval, the recipient must also agree to provide on-going financial statements as requested, pictures of the project and access to the facility for the purpose of ensuring the donation is being used for the intended and stated purpose.
  8. In the event an application is declined, the organization’s application will be eligible for reconsideration at the next funding period, unless the organization withdraws its application in writing. Applications will only be reconsidered one (1) time before having to be resubmitted for a different capital project in the following application period.
  9. A follow up process and evaluation procedure will be implemented. This process will require a report from the recipient regarding the success of the project as well as long and short term recognition plans to be submitted within 90 days of project completion. Formal agreements may also be necessary, depending on the nature of the application and if the REFDC deems it necessary.



  1. Donations are intended for non-recurring capital projects within a 5-year period.
  2. Organizations may receive funding in two (2) consecutive years from the REFDC, however organizations cannot reapply within a 5-year period from the year they last received support.
  3. Funding is not intended as a contribution to a foundation for subsequent further distribution.
  4. Contributions for political purposes of any nature to individual candidates, political parties or their agents are not eligible.
  5. Organizations receiving funding must spend the money within two (2) years of receipt and provide proof that the donation was used to initiate or complete the project.
  6. Selection Criteria is subject to periodic review and revision by the REFDC. All funding is at the discretion of the WFD Board of Governors who reserves the right to cancel or amend the Regional Enhancement Fund Program at any time, without warning, and without penalty, at its sole and absolute discretion.



Submissions are now open, ALL applications must be received by 11:59pm on March 31st, 2019


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