The Institute for Community Prosperity, Re-Code, and the Trico Charitable Foundation invite the six finalist teams of Canada Map the System 2020 to apply for Apprenticing with a Problem funding. 

Apprenticing with a Problem (AwP) is a term the Skoll Centre borrowed from Jessamyn Shams-Lau, CEO of the Peery Foundation, and refers to learning about a social/environmental problem firsthand from those who have lived it or done significant work to address it. 

The Canadian Apprenticing with a Problem grant gives students the opportunity to build on and explore the gaps, levers of change, and missed opportunities identified in their Map the System challenge research.

Eligible teams can apply for up to $10,000 per team. This funding should be an extension of the social or environmental problem from the Map The System research. This may take many forms, including, but not limited to: a community engagement project, a subsidy for an unpaid internship, or a multi-stakeholder project. Importantly, the project must demonstrate potential for positive impact in the system; it cannot be a learning experience for which impacts accrue mainly to the team.  


  • The top 6 finalist student teams of the 2020 Map the System Canadian Final Competition are each eligible for up to $10,000 per team. 

  • External collaborators on Map the System submissions who are not students or recent alumni are not eligible to apply. 

  • Teams are not eligible to reapply if they have received AwP funding in the past.

Additional Information and Timelines

Application window: May 31, 2020 - November 30th, 2020.
  • Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis during the application window, and it can take up to 4 weeks for submissions to be approved. If successful, receipt of the funding can take a further 4-6 weeks. Please plan accordingly. 

Project length: 
  • The period of the project should be no less than one month in duration. We expect funds to be used in full within 18 months of project acceptance, or by December 31, 2021, whichever comes first. 
  • Funds will be released in two installments: one at the start of the project, and the second at roughly the halfway point (triggered by a progress report submitted by the team). 

Teams can submit up to 2 applications over the course of the application window up to the maximum amount of funding. For example, a team might need $3,000 to begin their project and, as such, submit for this amount. If later, they realize a new opportunity for impact, they can submit a second application for up to an additional $7,000. 

Necessary components of a strong application 
  1. The application must outline achievable, positive desired outcomes (i.e. positive impacts for the community, stakeholders, and/or in alleviating aspects of the problem).
  2. The application must describe clearly how the project + funding will achieve these outcomes.
  3. The project must be supported by one or more relevant host organisations or local stakeholders.  
  4. The project must have a mentor or supervisor who is not a team member. In many cases a faculty member at your school is a good choice, but if a different person is more appropriate for your project, please propose that, to be approved by MTS Canada. 
  5. This funding cannot support any new team members who were not participants in the original MTS competition. It is understandable if not all team members are able to continue from MTS into AwP, but those who are not participating must confirm that they do not wish to continue. 
  6. The project must generate a public-facing report or educational material that can be shared in future MTS and AwP communications. While this might naturally be a part of your larger project, in some projects, it might not come about on its own. In these cases, you could create a short final report, blog post, infographic, or video at the end of the project. 

To apply:
  1. Please email the following two documents to Latasha Calf Robe 
Application Template: download, rename, fill in, and submit as a Word or Google Docs file
Budget Template: download, rename, fill in, and submit as an Excel or Google Sheets file
  1. After the application is received, you will be contacted to set up a phone call with Latasha to help better understand the project, and answer any clarification questions. 
  1. Unless otherwise discussed, funding will be released in two installments. At the midway point of the project, teams must submit a short (1-page) progress report, outlining what has been done so far, and what the final stage of the project will accomplish.
  2. Upon the completion of the project, the team must submit a final (1-page) report, reflecting on their experience, achievements, and lessons-learned, and also linking any materials they produced (see #6 above). They will also have a short phone conversation with the AwP organizer(s). 

For more details regarding Apprenticing with a problem email Latasha Calf Robe at