Applications now being accepted for RTO 9 Tourism Relief Fund

April 21, 2022
Clock Tower
Lamoureux Park

A new funding program has been established to provide support to tourism businesses throughout Cornwall and SDG Counties and across eastern Ontario.

Region 9 Regional Tourism Organization (RTO9), a tourism organization which represents much of eastern Ontario – has received a non-repayable contribution of $3 million from the Government of Canada through FedDev Ontario, to deliver the Tourism Relief Fund to tourism businesses.

Support is available for small businesses in the tourism sector to recover from the impacts of the pandemic and seize new market opportunities through enhanced or new products and services.

RTO9 will be administering non-repayable financial support ranging from $5,000 to $100,000. For-profit businesses can apply for non-repayable contributions of up to $100,000 for up to 50% of eligible project costs and not-for-profit organizations can apply for non-repayable contributions of up to $100,000 for 100% of eligible costs.

The Tourism Relief Fund is available to SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises), incorporated private sector tourism businesses, Indigenous, First Nation, Metis and Inuit owned tourism businesses, and incorporated not-for-profits that service tourists on a regular basis, Indigenous Band Councils and Municipalities.

All expenditures must be made for upgrades to facilities, services, or enhanced sustainability, inclusivity programming that will benefit the visiting tourist and/or tourism employees.

The intention of this fund is to enhance tourism offerings within Region 9 (South Eastern Ontario), and to become a more sustainable and inclusive destination.

Objectives of the fund

Tourism Relief Fund projects will focus on:

Product development: For example, projects that enhance tourism experiences; help tourism businesses adapt to the “new normal,” to modernize their offerings; adopt more environmentally sustainable and inclusive practices.
Destination development: For example, projects that position communities to take advantage of post-pandemic opportunities through strategic planning for medium- to long-term investments, as well as supporting destination development prospects in line with objectives set out in the Federal Tourism Growth Strategy.

Funding Available per applicant

• SME Incorporated Private Sector – 50% of Eligible Costs up to $100,000 reimbursement
• Indigenous, First Nation, Metis and Inuit owned, Tourism Businesses – 50% of Eligible Costs up to $100,000 reimbursement
• Incorporated NFP – 100% of Eligible Costs up to $100,000 reimbursement
• Indigenous Band Councils – 100% of Eligible Costs up to $100,000 reimbursement
• Municipalities – 100% of Eligible Costs up to $100,000 reimbursement
• SME must have fewer than 500 employees
• Interested applicants are encouraged to consult the guidelines before completing the application


• Application period opens April 12, 2022, and closes May 15, 2022, at 4 pm
• Applications submitted after the deadline will not be accepted

Additional information

For additional info on the RTO 9 Tourism Relief Fund and to access the application guide and application form, please visit the RTO 9 website.

For questions, please contact Katherine Hobbs, project manager, at


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