FEMA Releases Updated Resilience Analysis and Planning Tool (RAPT)

At-a-glance evaluation of demographics and infrastructure

NIMS Alert 07-20: FEMA Releases Updated Resilience Analysis and Planning Tool

FEMA released expanded capabilities to the Resilience Analysis and Planning Tool (RAPT), including census tract data and additional infrastructure layers for all state, local, tribal and territorial jurisdictions across the nation. This update to the tool enables a more granular analysis of community resilience indicators and allows users to calculate the population of individuals with specific indicator characteristics in selected census tracts.

Jurisdictions at all levels, other federal agencies, the private sector, and nongovernmental organizations can use RAPT to inform strategies for preparedness, response and recovery activated related to the coronavirus pandemic and other disasters. The tool is a free-to-use Geographic Information System (GIS) webmap tool that allows users to combine layers of community resilience indicators, infrastructure locations, and hazard data to visualize, prioritize and implement strategies to impact resilience, response, and recovery.

The updated RAPT provides important census-tract level demographic information and infrastructure locations related to coronavirus pandemic planning and response efforts. This includes the location and size of infrastructure entities such as hospitals, nursing homes, urgent care facilities, public health departments, and pharmacies; population count and demographics of individuals within a containment zone (e.g. over age 65, disability, educational attainment); and visualization tools.

The RAPT is publicly available at:

https://bit.ly/ResilienceAnalysisandPlanningTool

Supporting documents for RAPT, including an overview document, user guide and information about the data layers and sources, can be found at:

https://www.fema.gov/de/media-library/assets/documents/176618

The National Integration Center will host three 60-minute training webinars over the next two weeks, starting on April 2, to provide additional background on the RAPT, demonstrate multiple capabilities and answer questions from RAPT users. Webinars are open to all.

Advance registration is not required, but space is limited to 150 participants per webinar. Real-time captioning will be available. To participate, please click on your preferred webinar session from the list below at the beginning of the webinar to begin and call the phone number provided:

Thursday, April 2, 12-1 p.m. ET
Participate: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/resilienceindicatorgis/
Audio Call-in: 202-795-3352. PIN: 253 361 211#

Tuesday, April 7, 3-4 p.m. ET
Participate: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/resilienceindicatorgis/
Audio Call-in: 202-795-3352. PIN: 253 361 211#

Thursday, April 9, 12-1 p.m. ET
Participate: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/resilienceindicatorgis/
Audio Call-in: 202-795-3352. PIN: 253 361 211#

For more information, please contact FEMA-TARequest@fema.dhs.gov.

Do this after you submit your grant application: Request Letters of Support

Letters of support

The Fund Finder News

By Kurt T. Bradley, Senior Grant Consultant, First Responder Grants

Congratulations, you submitted your grant! Once your application is in, though, there is still one thing left to do. It’s something you can—and should—do with any grant: request letters of support.

Application first, letters second

First off, notice I said you should do this after the grant was submitted. There is a reason for that.

Letters of Support need to be filed in your original grant file (especially in the case of large Federal grants such as the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program). Unless the grant provider has a grant number to associate that file and the Letter of Support, your letters will not make it into the file where they will be seen by the technical reviewers (provided that you scored well enough to warrant a technical review).

When you compose your request for a Letter of Support, be sure that your grant number, such as your 2019 AFG grant number is clearly noted. That way when it is received by AFG, they know exactly what file to put it into.

Who should you ask for letters of support?

First and foremost, ask all the Congressional Representatives from your state, both the US House of Representatives and US Senate.

Remember: This is not time to be partisan! Ask from Democrats as well as Republicans, and regardless of your like or dislike of politicians.

It’s always good to get a letter from your State Department of Homeland Security director.

If your grant is for communication equipment, request a letter from the Director of State DHS Emergency Interoperable Communications.

Also, it’s not a bad idea to ask for letter from your State Governor.

How to make contact

Now you know who you should ask for letters of support. But how do you know who these people are, and where do we find their mailing addresses?

And that’s right: mailing address. Not a phone number. Not texting. Not email. For everyone you want to contribute a letter of support about your grant, you’re going to send an actual letter.

Let me help you out as much as I can:

Copy this template: What to send in your letter of request

Here’s an example of what your letter of request should look like. We’ll use the FY 2019 AFG as an example, but you can copy, paste and customize this in your word processor to whatever grant you need it to reflect:

(Insert Date)

(Your Rank and Name)

(Your Department)

(Your Department’s Mailing Address)

(Your Direct Phone Number)

(Their Title and Name)

(Their Mailing Address)

RE: Letter of Support for 2019 Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program

(Dear Mr./Ms./Representative/Senator/Governor LastNameHere)

The (Insert name of department, City, State) and our citizens, whom we are charged with protecting, respectfully requests a letter of support from your office in support of our recent grant application submitted on March 20,2020, to the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program offered by FEMA, a copy of which is attached.

This request is seeking $?????? in Federal share funding to acquire critically needed firefighting equipment necessary for us to ensure the health and safety of our firefighters and citizens that we protect and in response to compliance with the National Response Framework established by the Department of Homeland Security. 

This equipment is critical to our ability to be able to safely carry out our mission toward achieving those goals. The current state of the economy has caused our financial stability to falter. We, nor our citizens and your constituents, are financially able to afford the costs this project requires. Temporary outside Federal financial assistance is desperately needed. Your support of our efforts to secure this funding is humbly requested.

Our grant number assigned to his project is (grant number). We would greatly appreciate a letter of support from you be sent to the address below referencing our grant number and lending your support to this vital project in support of your constituency. 

The citizens and our department thank you for your time and support.

Respectfully,

(Your Name and Title)

The letter should be addressed and sent to:

DHS-FEMA-GPD
Attn: Chris Logan
Acting Assistant Administrator for Grant Programs
400 C Street S.W., 3N
Washington, D.C. 20472-3635

Once you write the letter

Once you’ve customized the letter above for your grant:

  • Print the letter on department letterhead
  • Sign the letter
  • Print out a complete copy of your grant from the online application
  • Put this letter on top of the grant request
  • Place the letter and grant request copy, unfolded, in a manila envelope and seal it.
  • Repeat as needed and mail to all those you addressed it to.

Seeking letters of support is a crucial final step that can make all the difference between rejection and winning a grant. Don’t forget this important last step! It’s something that all our past winners do—and you should also.

See you in the Winner’s Circle!

Coronavirus/COVID-19: Kingman, Arizona Grant-Writing Training rescheduled for Sept. 9–10, 2020

Given current concerns and recommendations about the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic, we are monitoring our 2020 grant-writing training schedule. To do our part to protect everyone’s safety, we will reschedule trainings as needed.

Our training is Arizona is rescheduled as follows:

Lake Mohave Ranchos Fire District, Kingman, AZ

New date: Sept 9-10, 2020

Register

At this time other trainings continue as scheduled. For registered students, we’ll be reaching out to you individually if there are changes to other trainings.

Want training but without the travel?

Our online training is always available:

Winning AFG: Online Grant Training. Remember: FY 2019 AFG application deadline has been extended to Mar. 20!

Writing Public Safety Grants: Online Grant Training

Questions? Please contact us

Stay safe out there… and wash your hands. Thank you for all you are doing during this time to protect yourselves and our communities.

What to do when you need a grant writer but don’t have one

Public safety grant writing services for agencies like yours

Don’t want to write a grant?

The reality is simple: Not every department or agency can maintain their own in-house grant writer.

Don’t have a grant writer? We have a full contingent of grant writers available to handle the tasks of writing your grant from start to finish.

Every grant program, department, organization, and community is different. Let’s talk about your needs and challenges, then we can present you with a FREE quote.

Learn more

Respond to wildland fires for populations under 10,000? This fire grant is just for you

2 wildland firefighters spray water on a wildland fire

FY2020 Volunteer Fire Assistance (VFA) Grant Program

Respond to wildland fires for populations under 10,000? The FY2020 Volunteer Fire Assistance (VFA) Grant Program fire grant is just for you.

50/50 matching wildland fire grants to Fire Departments serving populations under 10,000

For Fire Service Organizations protecting populations under 10,000, the USDA and US Forestry Service (USFS) has a special fire grant program just for you.

With an FY 2020 budget of $18 million, the Volunteer Fire Assistance (VFA) grant program funds 50/50 matching grants for volunteer and combination fire departments. Eligible programs include:

  • Equipment procurement for wildland firefighting
  • Firefighter training
  • Planning and preparedness activities

Detail, deadlines, and other requirements may vary by state. To learn more and apply for a VFA grant:

Remember: 6 police grants close soon

Major DoJ/COPS programs open now

March is a big month for police grants!

6 major Federal programs are open during March, but application periods close soon:

DoJ 2020 COPS Hiring Program (CHP), apply by Mar. 11, 2020

DoJ 2020 Community Policing Development (CPD) Microgrants Program, apply by Mar. 11, 2020

COPS Community Policing Development (CPD) Program, apply by Mar. 31, 2020

COPS Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act (LEMHWA) Program, apply by Mar. 31, 2020

COPS Preparing for Active Shooter Situations (PASS) Program, apply by Mar. 31, 2020

COPS Tribal Resources Grant Program – Technical Assistance (TRGP-TA) Program, apply by Mar. 31, 2020

How is your AFG application coming along?

AFG application period closes Fri., Mar. 13, 2020, 5:00 p.m. ET

With $315M spread over an estimated 2,500 awards, the FY2019 Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) is America’s largest fire grant. Competition is fierce. The application is intense. And the narrative requires some serious A game.

How is your AFG application coming along?

And remember: The application period closes Fri., Mar. 13, 2020, 5:00 p.m. ET.

Need AFG help?

SVPP, CAMP, AHTF: Apply for 3 COPS Police Grants by Apr. 8, 2020

COPS

The COPS Office has announced that the following 3 grant funding opportunities are now open and accepting applications:

School Violence Prevention Program (SVPP)

The 2020 COPS Office School Violence Prevention Program is a competitive program that provides funding directly to States, units of local government, Indian tribes, and its public agencies to be used to improve security at schools and on school grounds in the jurisdiction of the grantee through evidence-based school safety programs.  Up to $50 million is available for this program.

Applications are due by April 8, 2020 at 7:59 PM EDT.  Please click here for more information on the 2020 School Violence Prevention Program.

COPS Anti-Methamphetamine Program (CAMP)

The 2020 COPS Anti-Methamphetamine Program is a competitive grant program that advances public safety by providing funds directly to state law enforcement agencies to investigate illicit activities related to the manufacture and distribution of methamphetamine.  Up to $13 million is available for this program.

Applications are due by April 8, 2020 at 7:59 PM EDT.  Please click here for more information on the 2020 COPS Anti-Methamphetamine Program.

Anti-Heroin Task Force (AHTF) Program

The 2020 Anti-Heroin Task Force program is a competitive grant program that assists state law enforcement agencies in states with high per capita levels of primary treatment admissions for both heroin and other opioids.  AHTF funds must be used for investigative purposes to locate or investigate illicit activities related to the distribution of heroin, fentanyl, carfentanil, or other opioids, or the unlawful distribution of prescription opioids.  Up to $35 million is available for this program.

Applications are due by April 8, 2020 at 7:59 PM EDT.  Please click here for more information on the 2020 Anti-Heroin Task Force program.

3 tips could help you win America’s biggest fire grant

Firefighters

Apply for AFG by Mar. 13

The Assistance to Firefighters Grant opened for applications Feb. 3, and the program closes Mar. 13. This is a highly competitive grant, but following these 3 tips just might help move your application to the winner’s circle:

  1. No request is too small: Remember to look at applying for “microgrants”
  2. Partner up: Regional grant applications are a solid approach
  3. High-priority items only! AFG is competitive, and medium- and low-priority items tend to be rejected

Now get a move on: This year’s application deadline is Fri., Mar. 13, 2020, 5:00 p.m. ET.

Learn more and apply

Need AFG help? Contact us