Indigenous Tourism Alberta

Request for Proposals for Community Pathway Program 2.0

Project Needs

Indigenous Tourism Alberta is seeking proposals from Contractors/Vendors to award a contract for a Community Pathway Program 2.0 to be completed by February 28, 2023. ITA seeks a collaborative partnership that prioritizes effective, innovative and continually improving strategic Development activities in ways that support ITA’s goals and respects Indigenous culture, diversity and Protocols.


Indigenous Tourism Alberta acknowledges that we are on traditional territories in Alberta, home to many First Nations, Métis, and Inuit who have called these territories home for time immemorial. We acknowledge with respect the traditional territories of Treaty 6, 7, 8, 4, and 10. We also acknowledge the homelands of the Métis, the 8 Métis Settlements, the 6 Métis Regions of the Métis Nation of Alberta, and the diverse histories and cultures of all the Indigenous Peoples of this province.


Indigenous Tourism Alberta (ITA) is a non-profit organization devoted to help grow and promote authentic, sustainable and culturally rich Indigenous tourism experiences we want to share with the world. ITA is seeking an agency partner who can work with the ITA development team led by the Director of Development in the development and execution a “Pathway 2.0 Operational Requirements (Pathway  Coordinator and business plan)” which will include a Pathway Guide, Coach’s Guide, and Administration Guide for communities who have previously participated in the Community Pathway Program and are looking to expand and continue their Community tourism journey. 

The purpose of  this  RFP is to expand on the currently developed ITA Community Tourism Pathway Program. 


Vendors are invited to submit proposals for the provision of furthering development tools for their company through business funding. This RFP will be conducted with the objective of maximizing the benefit to ITA, while offering members a fair and equitable opportunity to participate. Vendors are advised to pay careful attention to the wording used throughout this RFP. Failure to satisfy any term or condition of this RFP may result in an unacceptable proposal. All proposals must be provided in English.

ITA Economic Sustainability Goals

1. Strengthen the quality of Alberta’s Indigenous tourism experiences to be competitive with other Canadian travel destinations once domestic and international travel re-open. 

2. Increase awareness and demand for Indigenous tourism in Alberta. 

3. Change the common traveler perception that all Indigenous tourism experiences are the same. 

4. Align the efforts and interests of Alberta’s tourism industry under a common Indigenous tourism strategy by partnering with the Government of Alberta and Travel Alberta. 

5. Sustain Alberta Indigenous Tourism membership. 

6. Stimulate Indigenous Tourism Alberta members via Development Stimulus. 


1. Maintain and sustain ITA membership base. 

2. Rebuild sustainable market-ready and export-ready Indigenous tourism products. 

3. Lead the future development of Alberta’s Indigenous tourism industry. 

4. Increase demand for Alberta’s Indigenous tourism experiences through domestic travel marketing campaigns.


Indigenous Tourism Alberta wishes to develop a “Pathway 2.0 Operational Requirements (Pathway  Coordinator and business plan)” which will include a Pathway Guide, Coach’s Guide, and Administration Guide for communities who have previously participated in the Community Pathway Program and are looking to expand and continue their Community tourism journey. 

This RFP is for the development of program, Participant guide, Coach’s guide and administration guide.

Project objectives and activities

For the participants who’ve completed the Community Tourism Pathway program, a strong  foundation has been laid for a successful journey in growing their  community’s local cultural tourism industry. Although the  communities will be well-positioned, continued support and follow  up will be beneficial in ensuring that they have any required  assistance to achieve their tourism goals. For this reason, ITA wishes to create a Community Tourism Pathway Program 2.0 to continue to grow and  evolve to be able to offer holistic support and guidance, and as a  byproduct, a strong, unified, and sustainable provincial Indigenous  tourism sector. 

Alongside the development of the Pathway Guide, a Coach’s  Guide and Administration Guide are to be created, ensuring that ITA also has their own map and compass for  implementing the Program on an ongoing basis.

The Pathway Guide is expected to contain (but not limited to):

  • Setting up a community tourism organization 
  • Hiring a local community tourism coordinator 
  • Defining the organizational strategy 
  • Developing a community tourism plan 
  • Help execute the Communities first Community Tourism Engagement session with their Nation/Settlement

Components of the following resources documents:

  • ITA Development Matrix”- an existing document produced by ITA on steps needed to move forward in market preparedness
  • “2018 NATIONAL GUIDELINES – Developing Authentic Indigenous Experiences in Canada” – an existing document produced by Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada (LINK) – toolkit to identify and highlight which parts of this document are key to this project’s objectives

Agency partners will also be expected to:

  • Collaborate with, and complement, ITA’s current activities, staff members and partners. 
  • Work closely with ITA’s Development team to ensure relevant consistency with ITA current programs and initiatives. 


  • Develop a “Pathway 2.0 Operational Requirements (Pathway  Coordinator and business plan)”
  • Develop “Pathway Guide”
  • Develop “Coach’s Guide”
  • Develop “Administration Guide”
  • Implementation of Pilot program for Pathways 2.0

Project timeline: Oct 1, 2022 to March 31, 2023

The vendor will demonstrate success in the following service categories including but not limited to: 

  1. Financial stability
  2. Indigenous Tourism Industry knowledge and applicable experience
  3. Ability to report back on deliverables achieved etc.
  4. Development program planning and execution

Fostering strategic partnerships with stakeholders in the tourism industry will be key, including national, provincial and regional partners. 

Contractors/Vendors will also be expected to:

  • Collaborate with, and complement, ITA’s current activities, staff members and partners. 
  • Work closely with ITA’s development team to ensure relevant content and creative being built by ITA for development activities is being created and utilized effectively. 
  • Develop rigorous account management, project management, development  measurement, financial management, and program accountability tools

ITA Responsibilities 

In collaboration with the successful members, ITA will engage with the member to better understand their specific company’s needs to further the organization’s preparedness to welcome guests. 

Performance Measurement

After the development of the program, the Vendor and ITA will perform a partnership review to improve the partnership’s effectiveness. The Agency partner(s) will also be required to provide formal feedback to ITA. 

ITA’s Discretion

Notwithstanding any other provision contained in this RFP or otherwise, ITA in its sole discretion may:

  • Accept any proposal that represents the best overall value, irrespective of whether such proposal represents the lowest price;
  • Amend, cancel or reissue this RFP in whole or in part at any time for any reason, or postpone or forego the RFP altogether, all in its sole discretion and without any liability or penalty to ITA or ITA personnel;
  • Waive any non-material defect, irregularity, mistake or insufficiency in the RFP;
  • Obtain clarification on any aspect of a proposal, without being obliged to seek clarification on all other proposals; and
  • Terminate negotiations with the selected Vendor if the terms and conditions of the agreement cannot be finalized after a reasonable period.

ITA or any person or entity retained by ITA for the purposes of this RFP shall not in any manner be liable or accountable for any error or omission in this RFP or responses provided to questions from Vendors with any matter related to this RFP. 

ITA shall not compensate or be liable to any vendor for any costs incurred by the vendor in the preparation, submission or consideration of the vendor’s proposal or the negotiation of the agreement. All costs associated with preparation, submission or consideration of proposals or negotiation of the agreement shall be the sole responsibility of the vendor. 

Evaluation Criteria

ITA will look for clear evidence throughout the RFP submission where vendors are delivering on a value-for-money approach addressing the following three keys:

  • Overall efficiency and effectiveness.
  • Demonstrated ability to successfully strategize and develop a robust program focussing on tourism development enhancement of Indigenous tourism businesses.  
  • Demonstrated ability to deliver relevant and timely reporting and insights.
  • Must demonstrate an ability to work collaboratively with the Development team. 
  • Must demonstrate a performance measurement system and the ability to quantify and analyze results of program.
  • Ability to identify and manage risk.
  • Demonstrate success in strategic planning and account management.
  • Demonstrate ability to develop and operate with accountability, including systematic planning, decision documentation, cost and time estimates, work-back schedules, and timely invoicing.
  • Must demonstrate sufficient financial and technological resources to support the account.
  • Must demonstrate capabilities and experience with tourism development.
  • Must provide published breakdown of resource rates for key service providers.
  • Must provide a list of accounts/clients, across all industries, in the past three years.
  • Demonstrated evidence of innovative thinking. 
  • Ability to conduct business with very strong English written and verbal communication skills.
  • Consideration will be given to agencies with a demonstrated ability to work with Indigenous organizations or an understanding of Indigenous culture and Protocol. 


10% Presentation

  • Corporate presentation, completeness and clarity of proposal

25% Financial 

  • Quoted fee and breakdown of fee

25% Qualifications and Experience 

  • Experience working with First Nations, similar project experience and background in tourism planning and development

25% Methodology and Approach 

  • Ability to meet project timelines, innovative ideas, presentations, supports

15% References 

  • Strength of references for whom the consultant has provided similar services

Indigenous Tourism Alberta reserves the right to select one or more vendors for further consideration following the initial proposal evaluation process.  Indigenous Tourism Alberta may require in-person presentations or interviews with vendors selected for final consideration, prior to negotiating a vendor contract. 

Proposal submission

Please submit proposals to Indigenous Tourism Alberta Director of Industry Development via All proposals received by September 31, 2022 will be considered. 

Questions of clarification may be directed to:

Mackenzie Brown

Director of Development 

Indigenous Tourism Alberta