We will no longer be supporting IE7 and below as a web browser effective June 1st 2020. Click here for more information.

Sign In
Skip Navigation LinksCOVID-19-Government-Supports Government Resources, Funding and Sector Supports

Contact Us

Can we help you?

Skip Navigation LinksEconomic Development Office > Government Resources, Funding and Sector Supports

Government Resources, Funding and Sector Supports

​​​​Back to Resources

Find the support you need for your business​. We're here to help.


Train​ing & Support

Federal Resources

Provincial Resources




Industry Discussion Forums ​



Regional Tourism Organization 7's PPE-COVID-19 Recovery Funds

RTO7 will reimburse a maximum of $1,000 before tax towards your purchase of PPE (defined as masks, sanitizer, shields, costs incurred to adhere to social distancing, touchless payments, new technology, increased cleaning, sanitization, etc.), retroactive to April 1, 2021.  Information available here.

Ontario Agri-Food Research Iniative - Commercialization Stream

The OAFRI Commercialization stream is designed to provide Ontario's agriculture, agri-food, and agri-based products sectors, including technology or equipment suppliers, access to funding to support commercialization projects with a focus on Market Validation and Product Development activities. These efforts aim to enhance competitiveness and the leadership position of Ontario in the agriculture and agri-food sectors.   More information available here​.

Ontairo Tourism Recovery Program

​The Ontario government is investing $100 million through the new Tourism Recovery Program to help stabilize the province's tourism industry as it recovers from the impacts of COVID-19.  The program will help for-profit tourism businesses in the attraction, accommodation, and leisure travel sectors protect critical jobs in communities across the province and help them prepare to reopen and safely welcome back visitors.  More information available here.

Recruitment Implementation Program - Tourism​

​​The new Recruitment Implementation Program (RIP) has been designed to offer additional support to BruceGreySimcoe tourism stakeholders in their workforce recruitment effort, more information available here.​

New Intake - Canadian Agricultural Partnership - Food/Beverage Processors

The governments of Canada and Onario are investing up to $6 million in projects to help Ontario food and beverage processors improve their oeprations, increase their competitive edge and adapt to challenges beyond the pandemic.​  Details available here​.

Renewed Ontario Together Fund Supports Ontario Innovation Showcase

 The Ontario government is investing $330,000 through the Ontario Together Fund to support the delivery of the Ontario Centre of Innovation’s (OCI) Ontario Innovation Showcase. The showcase will provide up to 18 companies that made submissions to the Ontario Together portal with the opportunity to participate in a competition for six $50,000 grants. It will also provide an opportunity for up to 26 companies that made submissions to the portal to participate in a virtual reverse trade show.

Wineries, Cideries and Agri-Tourism Industry

As part of the 2021 BudgetOntario’s Action Plan: Protecting People’s Health and Our Economythe government committed to provide a one‑time $10 million grant in 2021 to help wineries and cideries with on-site stores whose business were impacted by COVID-19 safety measures to stop the spread of the virus. The new Winery Agri-Tourism COVID-19 Relief Initiative will fulfill this commitment by providing one-time grants to eligible wineries and cideries with on-site retail stores in September 2021.

Jobs and Growth Fund​

Will help job creators and the organizations that support them to future-proof their businesses, build resiliency and prepare for grwoth by transitioning to a green economy, fostering an inclusive recovery, ehancing competitiveness and creting jobs in every corner of the country.

Tourism Relief Fund

Delivered through FedeDv Ontario supports tourism businesses and organizations to adapt their operations to meet public health requirements while investing in products and services to facilitate their future grown.

Canada Recovery Hiring Program (CRHP))

​Supports for employers to provide wages to their employees still affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.  Deadline for application is December 30, 2021.

Venture Ontario Fund​

The Ontario government is providing $100 million in venture capital funding to assist high-potential technology companies innovate and grow, boosting the province's long-term competitiveness, helping to create jobs and driving economic growth.​

Region​al Tourism Organization 7's Partnership Program Funding 2021/22​

RTO7 is pleased to announce their line-up of programs geared to support tourism operators, businesses and organ​izations as they move into recovery from the effects of COVID-19 on the tourism industry.

Ontario Tourism and Travel Small Business Support Grant​ (Deadline June 25, 2021)

The Ontario government is providing one-time payments of $10,000 to $20,000 to support elgibile small tourism and travel businesses struggling to recover from the impact of COVID-19 pandemic through the new $100-million Ontaroi Tourism and Travel Small Business Support Grant.

Ontario's Skills Development Fund​​ - CLOSED (spring 2021 intake details to be announced soon)

Applications are now open for Ontario's new two-year $115 million Skills Development Fund. The fund will support workers and apprentices and is designed to address challenges brought on by COVID-19  to help reduce obstacles to hiring, training, and retaining workers while simultaneously preparing for the province's economic recovery.

​The Skills Development Fund will accept applications from a wide range of employment and training organization in Ontario, with focus on

  • giving laid-off workers immediate access to training supports or new jobs
  • improving the quality of training
  • reaching out to traditionally underrepresented groups
  • increasing apprentice registrations and completion
  • better serving local communities
  • supporting the talent needs of small businesses

Regional Relief and Recovery Fund​

Support for a Canadian or provincially incorporated business, co-operative or an Indigenous-owned business located in southern Ontario with 1 to 499 full-time equivalent employees. Interest-free loans of up to $60,000 (with up to $20,000 forgivable) are available and funds are administered by Simcoe County CFDCs:

  • Centre for Business and Economic Development - Servicing Collingwood, Wasaga Beach and Clearview   
  • Nottawasaga Community Futures Development Corporation - Servicing Innisfil, New Tecumseh, Bradford West-Gwillimbury, Adjala-Tosorontio and Essa  
  • North Simcoe Community Futures - Servicing Midland, Penetanguishene, Tiny, Tay, Springwater, and Christian Island
  • Orillia Area Community Development Corporation - Servicing Orillia, Oro-Medonte, Ramara, Severn, and Rama First Nation

​Should you be interested in a loan of ​more than $60,000 and meet the eligibility criteria outlined on FedDev Ontario’s website, you may wish to apply to FedDev Ontario.

Southwestern Ontario Development Fund (SWODF)​​

A business expansion funding program for large-scale project. It that incentivizes companies to invest in new facilities and equipment. It attracts projects that have a significant impact on business productivity and create new employment opportunities within the company.

To qualify for SWODF funding, Southwestern Ontario businesses must provide a minimum investment of $500,000, have at least 10 employees at the time of application, and commit to creating at least five jobs during the project. 

SWODF will fund up to 15% of project costs. Rolling application deadlines.

Canada Emergency Business Account

Interest-free loans of up to $60,000 to all businesses and not-for-profits to help cover their operating costs during a period where revenues have been temporarily reduced. Owner-operated small businesses that do not have a payroll, sole proprietors receiving business income directly, as well as family-owned corporations remunerating in the form of dividends rather than payroll​ are also eligible. Note: repaying the balance of the loan on or before December 31, 2022 will result in loan forgiveness of up to $20,000.

Apply at https://ceba-cuec.ca

Cana​da Recovery Benefit​​

Income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are directly affected by COVID-19 and are not entitled to Employment Insurance (EI) benefits

If you are eligible for the CRB, you can receive $1,000 ($900 after taxes withheld) for a 2-week period. If your situation continues past 2 weeks, you will need to apply again. You may apply up to a total of 13 eligibility periods (26 weeks) between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021.

Apply at https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/benefits/recovery-benefit/crb-how-apply.html​

WILWorks - Student Wage Subsidy for Manufacturers​

* The program was in effect until March 31, 2021.

The Excellence in Manufacturing Consortium (EMC) WILWorks program provides wage subsidies for student placements in manufacturing and related sectors (e.g. North American Industry Classification - NAICS codes 31-33). ​​The program is offered as part of the Student Work Placement Program (SWPP).

Subsidies are 75% of the cost of wages, up to a maximum of $7,500 per student placement. 

Apply at ​​​https://magnet.whoplusyou.com/lp/emctalent.​​​

Canada Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program Loans

On February 1, the Canadian HASCAP Loans program is now open and accepting applications.

What is HASCAP? Canadian businesses heavily impacted by COVID-19 and the global pandemic can access guaranteed, low-interest loans of $25,000 to $1 million to cover operational cash flow needs. The funds are guaranteed by the Canadian government through the BDC.

Find our more information at https://hascap.ca/​

BDC Small Business Loans

Loans of up to $100,000, repayable over 5 years that can be used to buy equipment, purchase extra software or hardware, apply for a patent, trademark or, other intellectual property protection.

Apply at ​​​www.bdc.ca/en/financing/business-loans/pages/small-business-loan.aspx​​​.​

Ontario's Digital Main Street Grants​

Programs that are designed to help businesses transition online or to enhance their digital presence. The following programs are available:

  • Ontario Grants: ​Providing main street businesses with Digital Transformation training and guidance and provide the opportunity for a grant of up to $2,500.
  • shopHERE: ​​​Providing independent small businesses and artists with a quick, easy, no-cost way to get selling online.​
  • Future Proof: Helping businesses identify new markets, pivot their business model, and develop and implement a deep digital transformation plan

Ontario's Main Street Relief Grant: PPE support​

A one-time grant of up to $1,000 to cover the cost of PPE purchased since March 17, 2020. To be eligible, your business must have 2 to 19 employees and be in one of the following sectors:

  • retail
  • accommodation and food services
  • repair and maintenance
  • personal and laundry services
  • gyms and yoga studios
  • arts, entertainment, and recreation.​​​​

Starting at $10,000 for all eligible businesses, the grant provides businesses with funding to a maximum of $20,000 to help cover decreased revenue expected as a result of the Provincewide Shutdown.

The business must demonstrate they experienced a revenue decline of at least 20 per cent when comparing monthly revenue in April 2019 and April 2020. This time period was selected because it reflects the impact of the public health measures in spring 2020, and as such provides a representation of the possible impact of these latest measures on small businesses.

Apply at ​ https://www.app.grants.gov.on.ca/msrf/#/​​

*Applications are now CLOSED

​We are pleased to announce that the County of Simcoe Tourism, Culture and Sport grant will be reinstated for 2021. In 2020, the County received 99 applications requesting a total of almost $1.1 million in financial support. However, due to COVID-19, in April 2020, Council voted to suspend the Tourism, Culture and Sport Grant and apply the allocated $300,000 for 2020 to the 2021 envelope, increasing the 2021 budget to $600,000.​​​

Applicants can submit more than one application, for a total ask of $10,000. This could be one application asking for up to $10,000 or multiple applications with smaller asks for a combined total of up to $10,000​

Find out more information and the application guidelines at: https://experience.simcoe.​​ca/resources#SCTDF

Businesses that were required to shut down or significantly restrict services due to provincial public health measures (in areas with modified Stage 2 restrictions or categorized as control or lockdown) can apply for rebates, provided in the form of grants, to help with their fixed costs.

Eligible businesses could get rebates for:

  • municipal and education property taxes
  • energy costs, including electricity and natural gas (or where natural gas is not available, propane and heating oil)

Funding will cover the entire length of time that regionally targeted public health restrictions are in place.

Apply at www.app.grants.gov.on.ca/msrf/#/​

CanExport SMEs Fu​nding​

Small and medium sized companies may access up to $75,000 in funding to assist with international market development activities. CanExport covers up to 75% of costs for export marketing of your products and services in international markets where you have little or no sales.​ Must be an incorporated legal entity or a limited liability partnership (LLP) to be eligible to apply​. 

With international travel restricted due to COVID-19, the CanExport SMEs program is pivoting to now help small businesses:

  • develo​​​p and expand their e-commerce presence by covering partial costs associated with online sales platforms and digital strategy consulting, as well as advertising and search engine optimization​​
  • attend virtual trade shows and other ​business-to-business events
  • navigate new COVID-19-related trade barriers by helping pay for new international market certifications and requirements

Find more information and apply here. 

Provides an up to 75% wage subsidy to employers who keep employees on their payroll and have suffered a decrease to gross revenues​. Available to businesses of all sizes, whether incorporated or unincorporated (i.e., individuals and partnerships), as well as non-profit organizations and charities for up to 12 weeks.

CEWS has been extended until June 2021! Apply at www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/subsidy/emergency-wage-subsidy.html.

Available to Canadian businessesnon-profit organizations, or charities who have seen a drop in revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The subsidy will be availble on a sliding scale to cover a portion of commercial rent or property expenses, starting on September 27, 2020, until June 2021

*On February 24, 2021, the government announced a proposed change. Find out more information on the change here​, and if it applied to your situation you may amend a previously submitted application.

For each claim period, you can claim eligible expenses up to a maximum of:

  • ​ $75,000 per business location (base and top-up)
  • $300,000 in total for all locations (including any amounts claimed by affiliated entities)
    • appli​es to the base subsidy only
    • there is no maximum​​ for the top-up subsidy
Apply here using a My Business Account​. 


For help navigating funding programs, contact edo@simc​oe.ca. The Simcoe EDO has also put together a reference document of Government S​upports for yo​ur Business​​​.

Training & Support

Digital Main Street & Beyond

To help businesses get online, FREE one-on-one training thoughout Simcoe County - not just those on main street. Find more information about the program here: DMS & Beyond.pdf

To activate easy to use tools and programs such as website support, Shopify, Google My Business, Future Proof Main Street and social media businesses should contact:

Small Business Enterprise Centre​ of Bar​​​rie, Simcoe County and Orillia at 705-720-2445 or digitalsquad@barrie.ca
(For b​usinesses in the Townships of Springwater, Oro-Medonte, Ramara, Severn,​ Tay and the Towns of Bradford West Gwillimbury, Innisfil and Midland)

South Georgian Bay Small Business Enterprise Centre on 705-446-3355 or email them at digitalmainst@collingwood.ca.​​
(For businesses in the Townships of Adjala-Tosorontio, Essa, Clearview, and Tiny and the Towns of Collingwood, New Tecumseth, Wasaga Beach and Penetanguishene)


HeyLocal is a Canadian marketplace that helps small and medium-sized businesses. Their mission is to offer a fully local online marketplace with the convenient shopping experience of retail giants, filled with great products sold by vendors within your community. Add your business to HeyLocal for free. ​​Learn more by visiting www.heylocal.ca

Ask an Expert Series

The "Ask an Expert" series helps businesses and individuals navigate information and get answers during the COVID-19 pandemic. This ongoing series feature experts on topics like Health and Safety, HR, Accounting, Marketing, Business Planning, Legal, and Mental Health, to name a few. It is a partnership between the County of Simcoe, the Small Business Centre of Barrie, Simcoe County and Orillia, South Georgian Bay Small Business Enterprise Centre, Orillia Area Community Development Corporation, Nottawasaga Futures, North Simcoe Community Futures Development Corporation and the Centre for Business and Economic Development. 

Learn more about upcoming sessions or watch recordings of previous sessions at www.simcoe.ca/askanexpert​​.

Mental Health Resources

​COVID-19 may cause increased stress and anxiety for businesses, employees, and the general public. The Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) has put together a list of mental health resources to support you during these unprecedented times.

Learn more and stay up to date on these resources by visiting https://occ.ca/covid19-mentalhealthresources/​​​.

Checklists for Reopening / Operating During COVID-19

​Self-assessment tools designed to help businesses identify gaps and risks, as well as potential approaches so they can safely resume operations.

  • Businesses Operating Through the Pandemic checklist here.
  • Businesses Returning to the Workplace after Working remotely checklist here.
  • Businesses Returning after Shutdown of Operations checklist here.
  • Pathogen Decontamination checklist​ - provides guidance to businesses as they prepare their facilities for a return to regular business operations

Guides for Reopening / Operating During COVID-19
  • COVID-19: Employee Positive Test Results - Protocol and Guidelines
  • Employee Re-integration Best Practices for Groups of 10 or more (CME)
  • How to complete a record of employment
  • How to Apply for Employment Insurance and Service Information Sheet
  • Worksharing guide for Employers 
  • Baker Tilly’s Federal Relief Measures Guide and COVID-19 Business Guidance
  • Avoiding Layoffs and ​Rehiring Employees
  • Canadian Business Resilience Network Pandemic Preparedness for businesses including guide to recovery and Toolkit for Reopening Canada
  • Support for Self-Employed Individuals​ - Canada emergency response benefit, deferral of sales tax remittance and customs duty payments until June and more time to pay income taxes

Federal Resources​​​​

Service Canada continues to provide critical services online and through their call centres during these extraordinary times, including a number of new virtual “e-services”. See details on virtual services.

  • Canada Business App - A dedicated COVID-19 tile has been added to the this app providing links to government announcements and information for businesses 
  • Statistics Canada​’s data and insights on COVID-19
  • Access to Credit ​- Information on the business credit availability program, emergency business account, emergency rent assistance, assisting innovative and early stage businesses, young entrepreneurs, businesses in the Territories, SMEs unable to access other support and rural businesses
  • ​Trade Commissioner Service Resources​
  • Canadian Business Resilience Network​​
  • ​Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS)​ - For businesses that have temporarily closed or significantly restricted its services due to public health orders.

​ Toll-free line for Ontario businesses with​​ questions : 1-888-444-3659 .





Visit Experience Simcoe​ for a directory of local producers, restaurants, retailers and more that have pivoted their businesses to offer products and services during this challenging time.  

Industry Discussion Forums ​

  • The Simcoe Entrepreneur Network is a network of community partners within the Simcoe County Entrepreneurship Ecosystem that works together towards improving the communication, collaboration, and consolidation of resources available to better serve entrepreneurs. Join the Simcoe Entrepreneur Network groups on LinkedIn and Facebook​ to connect with local entrepreneurs, ask ques​tions and share resources and advice to help support each other through the COVID crisis.
  • Barrie Manufacturing Portal - a private forum open to Simcoe County manufacturers to share best practices and ideas. Contact edo@simcoe.ca to register. 
  • The Excellence in Manufacturing Consortium (EMC)​ has a "Member Needs Help" service to ask questions and share information. This is now open to members and non-members through the pandemic.