Grants of up to
Open for Applications
Applicants must live in
Alberta or British Columbia
TELUS Optik Local funds select training sessions or workshops to teach your community how to create compelling locally-relevant video content.
There is one annual deadline of June 30th for all applications. Workshop/event support applications may request a grant of up to $25,000 and each applicant may request funding for a maximum of two projects per deadline.
Your workshop / event should…
- Encourage the development of content creation skills
- Demonstrate a high level of potential community involvement
- Demonstrate commitment from community members and organizations
- Engage volunteers
A few things to consider
- In order to maximize your chances of a successful application please ensure that you read all the information below before you apply.
- Note that you may submit a maximum of 2 applications per deadline (workshops events and video projects)
- We accept applications for workshops/ events that include the delivery of audio visual content to TELUS, and ones that do not.
- Note that you can submit your application prior to June 30 – you don’t have to wait until the deadline. Decisions will be announced between July and September. Late applications will not be reviewed until the following funding year.
- You must be able to hold your training/workshop within approximately 10 months of receiving the grant.
For a workshop / event, you can submit your unique ideas for teaching creators how to produce their own compelling, locally-relevant content.
All projects must meet certain requirements:
- The idea must originate from a person who:
is not employed by TELUS or another Broadcast Distribution Undertaking (BDU); AND
is resident in BC or Alberta.
Most of our applicants come from Vancouver Lower Mainland1, Edmonton2 or Calgary3. However, we are also looking for applications from creators from other communities in BC and Alberta including (but not limited to) Kamloops, Kelowna, Nanaimo, Penticton, Prince George, Vernon, Victoria, Fort McMurray, Grande Prairie, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat and Red Deer (together with Vancouver Lower Mainland, Edmonton and Calgary, the “Optik Local Communities”).
- A person from one of the Optik Local Communities in BC and Alberta must be involved in the production team, or as the training event or workshop organiser.
- Each company or individual may submit a maximum of 2 applications per deadline. For clarity, this means each applicant may submit 2 production applications, 2 workshop/event applications, or one of each for a maximum of two applications per deadline.
- If you are providing us with audio-visual content for our platforms, you must have, or be able to obtain, all the necessary rights, releases and clearances for your program to appear on TELUS Optik TV Video on Demand and on all TELUS-branded or related websites or social channels, including the Optik Local YouTube channel, in English, if applicable (NOTE: audio-visual content in another language is eligible provided it is either sub-titled or versioned into English)
- The program should be completed and delivered on or before July 15th of the broadcast year in which you receive your grant (the broadcast year runs from September 1st to August 31st)
- Documentary projects covering an issue of public concern should depict balanced viewpoints.
- Applications including audio-visual content must be for programs no shorter than 10 minutes. NOTE: music videos are not eligible.
- Your program must comply with all laws, regulations and policies governing content, taste, community reflection and diversity of voices including the Canadian Broadcasting Act, CRTC Best Practice Code and other relevant Canadian laws. TELUS Optik Local will not provide support to any program that, in its sole discretion, may not comply with these laws, regulations and policies, or that contains any element that is an offence under the Criminal Code, is libelous or is in any other way unlawful.
- IMPORTANT NOTE: Commercial programming is not eligible. This includes programs featuring professional major league sports and programming that is, or has been, licensed with a broadcaster or appeared on a major network.
All applications should also demonstrate the following criteria, where possible:
- Reflect the local community and a diversity of voices
- Present innovative ideas and alternative views with a balanced viewpoint on existing or emerging issues of importance
- Feature local places and events
- Demonstrate commitment from community members and local organizations
- Engage volunteers and provide training opportunities
- Include a workshop that encourages the development of content creation skills and demonstrates a high level of potential community involvement
- Demonstrate the ability to secure sufficient sources of financing to meet the total budget
- Discuss the use of social media and digital technologies in the promotion of your program or training/workshop event (for example, shareable online teaser pieces of content)
- Demonstrate innovation in: (i) the creation or promotion of your project, including its use of shareable content and social media platforms; and/or (ii) the use of current technology in a new way (for example, new ways to interact socially or engage the community)
Please indicate if the producer or event organiser attached to the application has previous experience delivering a production, workshop, or training event of a similar nature and scope, OR please demonstrate if the program will support the development of a new or emerging community creator or workshop facilitator.
If your application is successful, TELUS Optik Local will determine its level of grant support relative to other sources of financing, the needs of the budget, and the potential value to the community. Typically, a portion of the grant funds are paid upon contract signing and the balance upon delivery and acceptance by TELUS of the completed eligible program, and any other required documentation or deliverables, to TELUS’ technical requirements (please download the Technical Specifications for details on our technical requirements).
Please note: TELUS Optik Local reserves the right to offer grant amounts lower than the requested or maximum amount
1 Vancouver Lower Mainland: Whistler to the Northeast, Cheakamus to the Northwest, Harrison Lake and Chilliwack to the East, and Lulu Island to the South
2 Calgary: Airdrie to the North, Strathmore to the East, Okotoks to the South, and Cochrane to the West
3 Edmonton: Morinville to the North, Whitecourt to the Northwest, Cooking Lake to the East, Leduc to the South, and Stony Plain to the West
- Propose the project you want to make or host, not the project you think TELUS Optik Local might like.
- Pay attention to the clarity of idea and intent in your proposal. If you are unsure about something, admit it and explain why and what you intend to do about it.
- Ambiguity is not a virtue in a proposal. Audio-visual content is a two-way conversation so someone other than yourself must be able to understand/feel/appreciate what you are saying.
- Become familiar with what TELUS Optik Local seeks to achieve through our support of local content creators. Check out some of our most recent programming on our Watch Video page.
- Be sure to read our Customer Toolkit and our Technical Specification for a better understanding of what we expect from you and what you can expect from us should your application be successful.
Q: What is the best way to pitch my project to you? Can I come in and present my proposal in person?
A: We do not have the capacity to meet with every applicant in person so we encourage you to ensure your application clearly reflects all the relevant aspects of your proposal; however, once your application is submitted we will review it for completeness, and will let you know if we need any more information from you.
Q: I think TELUS would be a great sponsor for our event; can I apply for sponsorship funding?
A: All of the events and workshops that we support have an element of training that is related to audio-visual content creation and distribution. TELUS provides grant funding to support these training opportunities but does not ‘sponsor’ events.
Q: Is the funding “triggered” in any way?
A: You do not need funding from a specific body in order to access our funding.
Q: Am I allowed to apply for more than one grant per deadline?
A: Each company or individual may submit a maximum of 2 applications per deadline. For clarity, this means each applicant may submit 2 production applications, 2 workshop or training event applications, or one of each for a maximum of two applications per deadline.
Q: Is it easier to get a grant if we already have some kind of support or financing from another source?
A: Not necessarily. Letting us know that other organizations will offer your project funding, or that organizations will support you with “in kind” services, etc., may help us to evaluate the potential community relevance of your project; however, it is neither necessary nor determinative.
Q: When will we know if we are getting a grant?
A: We will communicate our final decisions to applicants after the review period (approximately 8 to 12 weeks after the submission deadline closes). Please do not contact us to inquire about the status of your application. Such inquiries will not be answered.
Q: If you have further questions regarding our proposal that are not answered in our application, will we have a chance to answer them?
A: We will do our best to contact you with any questions we have about your application.
Q: Can I make changes to my application after it has been submitted?
A: You are able to resubmit a new application at any time BEFORE the application deadline. However, it is not possible to edit your existing application once it has been submitted. If you are intending to submit a revised application, please contact us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org to alert us so that we may delete your original submission from the database. Any requests to revise or resubmit your application AFTER the June 30th deadline will NOT be accepted.
Q: How do I know you received my application?
A: All applications are made through our online portal – once you have electronically submitted, you will receive a confirmation via email, including a reference number.
Q: If we would like feedback on our proposal, and why it was not accepted, can we access that information?
A: We receive a large number of requests for support, and the demand for our funding greatly outweighs our available resources. We are not able to give feedback on individual applications.
Q: Should I incorporate a company to administer my project through, and what are the implications of doing so?
A: TELUS is unable able to provide business affairs, legal or accounting advice. We encourage you to seek the advice of professional advisors who know what is best suited to the specific needs of your situation. You do not need to have an incorporated company in order to receive our grants
Q: I have questions about chain of title, legal and business affairs and/or accounting issues related to my project; are you able to answer them for me?
A: TELUS is unable able to provide business affairs, legal or accounting advice. We encourage you to seek the advice of professional advisors who know what is best suited to the specific needs of your situation.
Q: Can TELUS provide me with any contract templates that I may require for my production?
A: TELUS is not able to provide you with any contracts or standard production templates.
We are currently revising this funding stream. Please check storyhive.com for further information and updates on an exciting new program coming shortly.