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Seeding Progress and Resources for the Cancer Community (SPARC) - Metastatic Breast Cancer (MBC) Challenge

Grants to Canada and International Organizations and
Agencies to Advance Breast Cancer Knowledge and Policy

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) and Pfizer

Deadline Date:



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Grants ranging from $15,000 to $25,000 and technical support to Canada and International nonprofit organizations and institutions for innovative new projects that support patients with advanced breast cancer. LOIs are due prior to submission of a full application.

The main goal of the program is to support and empower patients living with advanced breast cancer to lead lives of a higher quality, and to strive to reduce the incidence of advanced disease through improvements in the health system more broadly. In support of this goal, an additional objective of the program is to enable organizations to increase their capacity, knowledge, and visibility through training, mentorship, and peer-to-peer learning with other SPARC grantees.

SPARC grants support projects in three focus areas:
- Information and support gap: Projects supported in this category aim at improving the patient’s ability to navigate diagnosis, treatment and care services. SPARC strengthens the level of social, economic, psychological and spiritual support for patients and their care givers. It also strengthens the healthcare professional capacity in taking care of the specific needs of MBC patients.
- Raising patient voices and awareness: SPARC MBC Challenge supports projects that reduce stigma and increase public awareness around MBC. Through increased awareness, SPARC encourages earlier presentation and access to timely treatment to decrease the incidence of locally advanced and metastatic disease at first diagnosis.
- Policy and health system gaps: SPARC projects providing policy-makers with guidance on the unique challenges of metastatic disease are our third priority area. Advocacy initiatives in the MBC space are encouraged and as well as the inclusion of the patient’s perspective into National Cancer Control Plan.

In 2019, 10 SPARC grants will be attributed to cancer organizations around the world. The SPARC grant consists of the following aspects:
- Seed-funding will be provided to enable the initiation of a new project in a SPARC focus area
- Peer-to-peer learning: The grantee organization will be included in the SPARC network, a group of 50 organizations tackling MBC across the world and will exchange best-practices with them
- Conferences: The grantee organizations will be given the opportunity to attend relevant international conferences related to MBC
- Mentorship: Renowned experts in breast cancer will mentor each SPARC project individually
- Training: Grantee organizations will access the SPARC Master Course, including online and in-person learning around MBC and insights on project management skills.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 160942

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

In 2019, 10 additional organisations will be selected to receive a SPARC grant.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Seed-funding between USD 15,000 and USD 25,000 will be provided.

Term of Contract:

The duration of the project is expected to be up to a maximum of 14 months, with the latest possible start date being January 2020.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligibility criteria are as follows;
- Non for profit: Applicants should be organizations or institutions that are non-for-profit, active in the field of cancer and should submit documents supporting their non-profit status (unless already UICC members)
- Organizational strength: Applicant organizations should have a track record of implementing cancer projects successfully and should have been registered as an organisation for a minimum of two years.
- New grantees: Applicant organizations should not have already received a SPARC grant.
- Tobacco and alcohol industries: Applicant organization should not have relationships with the tobacco or alcohol industries, and if they do, should provide additional information on the nature of the relationship.
- Applications are welcomed worldwide, excluding the United States of America.

Projects that have already started will not be funded. Projects related to screening or detection of early breast cancer only, with no link to MBC will not be funded. The project funds should not cover medical education programs for medical personnel, medical supplies or equipment, medical services (i.e., tests, interpretation of tests, treatments, medication), patient treatment, fundraising events, travels, lodging, registration for conferences, research projects other than those that seek to understand quality of life issues in medically underserved MBC populations, professional dues or membership fees, liability insurance, rent, advertising unrelated to the project campaign and program incentives.

Indirect costs such as overheads that are not directly linked with the project will not be covered.

Pre-Application Information:

The next SPARC call for proposals is now opened until the 15th April 2019.

- Call for Letters of intent: End of Feb. to April 15, 2019
- SAG review of the Letters of intent: Mid-April to mid-May 2019
- Invitations to submit the full applications: Mid-May 2019
- Call for full applications: Mid-May to end of June 2019
- SAG review of the full applications: early July to end of August 2019
- Grantee organizations are announced: mid-October 2019

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

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Geographic Focus:

Canada: Alberta   British Columbia   Manitoba   New Brunswick   Newfoundland and Labrador   Northwest Territories   Nova Scotia   Nunavut   Ontario   Prince Edward Island   Quebec   Saskatchewan   Yukon


International country outside of the USA, Israel and Canada.