Building places to get and stay active

Built Together

Our Built Together program helps Albertans build spaces for active living in their community

Our Built Together program helps Albertans build spaces for active living in their community. Whether it be a skate park, playground, outdoor gym or sports court, we're giving back to Albertans and helping them live their best lives.

Each year, we award $50,000 grants in Edmonton, Calgary, a secondary city, rural community and an Indigenous community.

Read about more than three dozen projects we've supported across the province with funding totalling $1.85 million.

The application process is now closed. Thank you to all who submitted.

An icon of a heart over a dumbbell.

Our Built Together program helps Albertans build spaces for active living in their community

Our Built Together program helps Albertans build spaces for active living in their community. Whether it be a skate park, playground, outdoor gym or sports court, we’re giving back to Albertans and helping them live their best lives.

Each year, we award $50,000 grants in Edmonton, Calgary, a secondary city, rural community and an Indigenous community.

Read about more than three dozen projects we've supported across the province with funding totalling $1.85 million.

The application process is now open until September 15, 2022. Click here for an application form

What do we fund?

Built Together funds infrastructure projects that foster active living. Eligible projects include but are not limited to

  • outdoor gyms,
  • cycling paths,
  • construction or replacement of playgrounds,
  • skate parks, and
  • outdoor rinks.

Programs must be publicly accessible and free of a membership charge.

A close up shot of a new playground.

Who can apply?

Community leagues, school councils, municipalities or other non-profit community groups or organizations with new projects in need of funding are eligible to apply.

Organizations must provide services without regard to race, religion, creed, gender or sexual orientation.

Priority will be given to projects that reflect our Built Together mandate of promoting active living and wellness at a grassroots community level, with an emphasis on children.

To ensure province-wide representation, we split grants with one in each of the following communities: Edmonton, Calgary, a secondary city, a rural community and an Indigenous community with a focus on ensuring grants are equitably distributed on a regional basis over the life of the program.

The following types of organizations are not eligible for funding

  • religious or sectarian organizations,
  • political organizations,
  • competitive sports teams or private clubs, and
  • contract fundraisers or lobbyists.

The application process is now closed.

For inquiries about the grant program, contact BuiltTogether@ab.bluecross.ca.

Building community over the years

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38

38 projects funded

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$1.85M

$1.85 million allocated

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$50k

$50,000 grants awarded each year

Frequently Asked Questions

The Program

Yes. The name changed to Built Together in 2021 to avoid confusion with other similarly named grant programs.

The application process opens May 16, 2022 and closes September 15, 2022.

Recipients will be notified in early December and funds will be disbursed before the end of year.

The grant is $50,000.

The grants are distributed across five categories: Edmonton, Calgary, secondary cities, rural communities and Indigenous communities. One grant is awarded in each category.

We have funded playgrounds, bike parks, skate parks, community parks, outdoor gyms, sports pads and rinks. All recipients can be found on our website.

Please reach out to BuiltTogether@ab.bluecross.ca with any questions.

Eligibility

Any Alberta-based and operated community group or organization that is supporting publicly accessible community amenities that promote active living. This can include community leagues, school councils, municipalities and other non-profit organizations.

It depends on if the project would be accessible to the public. If users would need to pay a fee to get to the project, then no. Also, we are looking for projects that serve a permanent community of people, so if there are not permanent residents nearby that would use the project, then that would be taken into consideration.

We will only fund a project once. But if you are applying for a different project, we would consider it. However, we try to spread projects out across Alberta, so if the projects are in the same area, that would be taken into consideration.

Yes, if you applied last year but weren’t successful you are still eligible to apply again.

Restoration or additions to existing infrastructure is within the scope of Built Together and eligible for funding

No. Only projects that have not been completed or won’t be completed when funds are distributed are eligible.

Yes, we have funded similar projects. However, if there is never free skate time available to the community, it is unlikely the project would be chosen.

As an Alberta based organization, Alberta Blue Cross® is committed to the communities we serve and our commitment includes ensuring wellness is accessible for Albertans. As such, only communities in Alberta are eligible to receive the Built Together grant.

If the total cost of the project is significantly less than $50,000 then it would be unlikely to be chosen as a recipient. If the project is near the funding goal but requires less than $50,000 to complete the project, we would look to see if something more could be added to the project to use the full funds. Or if some of the other money raised could be put back into the fundraiser's budget to be used elsewhere.

Yes, all unsuccessful applicants will receive an email announcing the recipients. Please note, this email will go to the email address supplied in the application and not to the email address that sent the application in. This email will be sent after all the recipients have been contacted and before it is announced on Alberta Blue Cross®’s website or social media. It will be sent in late December or early January.

Projects that are on publicly funded and on school property (such as Edmonton Catholic Schools or Calgary Catholic School District) ARE eligible for Built Together and have received funding in previous years. Projects on private or chartered schools may be eligible, but only if the project would be easily accessible and open to the surrounding community. Funding would not be provided to a project that was being built only for the use of a school and not open to the surrounding community.

Application process

Yes, applications with less than three reference letters will be considered incomplete.

Yes, however letters more than five may not be considered.

Letters from members of the community who will be directly impacted by the project are the most impactful. It is recommended that your letters be all or mostly from community members.

Letters from government officials such as MLAs, city councilors and MPs are generally form letters that don’t hold a lot of impact and are not recommended to be submitted with your application.

Unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to check every application for completeness. If you realize after applying that a piece was missing, you can still submit it as long as it is before the application deadline.

The project plan should include the following:

  • An explanation of why your group is applying.
  • An explanation of how your proposed project will support active living.
  • Expected outcomes of this project and how you will measure its success.
  • The need for the proposed infrastructure.
  • Relevant research.
  • Information on who is anticipated to use the infrastructure.
  • Information on how accessible the infrastructure will be (both in terms of physical abilities and financial abilities).
  • Realistic project timelines.
  • Three to five pictures of space where infrastructure is being proposed.
  • Blueprints and or pictures of proposed project or suggested equipment (optional, three to five pictures maximum).
  • Projects in Edmonton and Calgary must also include details from the following to provide detailed community demographics:

A balanced financial statement outlying expenses and income (indicating secured, pending and outstanding). As well as quotes from builders (if available).

Funds must be used on the infrastructure itself (such as equipment, labour and architectural plans). They cannot be used for salaries, admin costs or unrelated expenses.

The preferred method for submissions is by email to BuiltTogether@ab.bluecross.ca. PDF files are preferred, but JPEGs and other files are acceptable as long as they are legible. Documents do NOT need to be sent as one file. We are unable to accept applications sent via Google Docs, Dropbox or other cloud-based file sharing sites.

Applications can also be sent by mail. However, applications need to be received by September 15, 2022, so you will need to ensure they are mailed in advance. Please mail applications to the address below.

Alberta Blue Cross
Community Impact
10009 108 Street
Edmonton, AB T5J 3C5

Selection process

  • Need in the community – are there similar projects nearby or other projects that serve the same demographic well?
  • Accessibility – are there any barriers to the community to use the project (are there fees, equipment costs or is the project accessible to all community members?)
  • Funds raised – how close to being fully funded is the project?
  • Overall cost of the project – what impact do our funds have towards the total cost? How much of the project does our grant fund?
  • Distributing projects across Alberta – have we funded projects in the community previously? Are we funding projects equitably across the province?

An internal selection committee reviews all the applications with an evaluation matrix to ensure all applications are evaluated the same.

You will receive a call from Alberta Blue Cross® informing you that you’ve been selected. The Alberta Blue Cross® representative will then send you a grant disbursement agreement that needs to be signed before the funds can be released. After you have received the funds, you will be responsible for sending progress reports until the project is completed. You will also have opportunities to be featured on Alberta Blue Cross®’s social media, website and blog.

Yes, the funds must be used within two years of being released. However, if delays occur beyond the control of the project organizers (such as the COVID-19 pandemic), extensions will be granted. If it becomes apparent the project will not be completed, the funds must be returned.

Inform Alberta Blue Cross® of the change. If the project is still within the scope of the grant program funds will not need to be returned.

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