BRUCE COUNTY "Spark" Program: Mentorships & Grants
Whether you are an individual, a start-up or an established micro/small business or non-profit organization, there can be many challenges and barriers to bringing a new tourism idea, experience or partnership to fruition.
We want to help. The "Spark" Program will match selected candidates with a tourism innovation mentor and provide a source of financial support to help take your great new tourism idea to the next level of development or implementation.
APPLICATIONS WILL BE ACCEPTED FROM JULY 3 to SEPTEMBER 9, 2019
The program application includes:
Region-wide call out for applications from individuals, small businesses and non-profits
Application reviews by a jury including local and provincial tourism innovators
Finalists Pitch Session
Selection of 3 program participants in each participating region
Selected applicants/program participants will receive:
3 month mentorship with a recognized tourism innovator and/or industry mentor
"Spark" grant funds to support tourism idea development activities
Access to a support network of tourism innovators, entrepreneurs and leaders
Guide outlining other resources and support services provided by our partners
All program applicants will be invited to join our "Spark" community of tourism innovators, idea makers, partners and supporters for special networking events, one-on-one's, and development workshops.
"Spark" Program Application Guide
Who Can Apply?
Individuals 18+ who live, work and/or own property in Bruce County
Micro/small businesses (up to 10 FT employees) based in Bruce County
Small non-profit organizations (up to 10 FT employees) based in Bruce County
If your business or non-profit organization has more than 10 employees, you can apply as an individual or partner with a micro/small business or non-profit organization with 10 employees or less.
What Are We Looking For? We are looking for new, early stage, start-up tourism experiences, product ideas and/or collaborative partnerships that will make tourism in your region more accessible, diverse, sustainable and competitive. Your idea should address one or more of the following:
Enhances our current tourism offerings
Creates new opportunities for the tourism industry
Addresses gaps in tourism products and services
Motivates travel to the region
Increases tourism spending
NOTE: Your new tourism idea must be developed in, located, and benefit Northern Bruce Peninsula and/or South Bruce Peninsula. While there are no specificcategories, we are especially interested in tourism ideas that have a sustainability component (environmental, social, financial) - this will be added to the scoring for the application review process).
What Is A “Tourism” Idea? Experiences, products and partnerships that motivate travel to your region by people living more than 40km away, across the border or internationally, and provide engagement, participation, purchasing and/or travel related opportunities while they are visiting.
What Do We Mean By “New / Early Stage / Start Up”? Tourism experiences, products and partnerships that are in the ideation stage, have just been created, are under development, or have been promoted/offered publicly for 6 months or less.
Other “Tourism” Definitions and Examples Experiences: Opportunities for visitors to engage, participate, interact, learn and explore in a region to get a local understanding and broader awareness of a destination, often combining different elements (eg. farmers market tour followed by a culinary class led by a local chef) Products: Buyable goods and services related to tourism in the region (eg. accommodations, attractions, tours, ticketed events, travel packages and other tourism bundles) Collaborative Partnerships: Two or more businesses/organizations working together to promote and/or deliver a new tourism related experience or product (eg. Metro Zoo + Cycling Group = “Jungle Ride” event)
"Spark" Program Application
How to Apply? Submit a 1,000 word maximum document to email@example.com with responses to each of the following 8 questions:
1. Contact information (name, phone number, email, organization name, website) 2. Tell us about yourself, your micro/small business or non-profit organization. 3. What’s your new tourism idea? 4. How is your idea innovative or unique? 5. What stage are you at with your idea? 6. Who are your target market(s) and/or partner(s)? 7. How would you utilize the “Spark” mentorship and grant funds if selected? 8. What are your hoped for outcomes and impacts? Copy and paste these questions into a word document and provide a response for each, keeping the full application document to 1,000 words or less.
In addition to the application document, please include a file or link to a 1 minute maximum unedited, unproduced video introducing yourself, your micro/small business, or non-profit organization. For example, use your smart phone to take the video, and then upload it to a file sharing service (eg. Dropbox, Google Docs) or a publicly accessible video sharing website such as YouTube (if you don’t want other people to find it, mark it as unlisted) and include the file or link in your email with your application document.
IMPORTANT: Both the 1,000 word maximum document and 1 minute maximum video are required for a complete application submission. Incomplete applications or applications that are above the maximum word/time limits will not be reviewed.
APPLICATIONS WILL BE ACCEPTED FROM JULY 3 to SEPTEMBER 9, 2019
Application Submission Applications are submitted via firstname.lastname@example.org. Emails will be sent to confirm receipt of all applications. If you do not receive a confirmation email, send another email or call 416-712-8819 to make sure we received your application. Applications submitted after the deadline will not be accepted or reviewed. All review jury decisions are final and cannot be appealed.
Your Application and Personal Information By submitting an application you agree that all of the information contained in your application is complete and accurate. You also consent that the Ontario Tourism Innovation Lab may collect the personal information contained herein within the application review process. Your application will be kept confidential during the review period.
Community Information Sessions
Would you like to host a "Spark" Program Community Information Session for your members, clients or stakeholders in Windsor Essex? Please contact us at email@example.com to schedule a session.
- Home Base - Ontario Tourism Innovation Lab c/o University of Windsor - EPICentre 2455 Wyandotte St W, Windsor, ON N9B 3B3 firstname.lastname@example.org 416-712-8819