Are you looking for a grant that can supports your organization’s fire prevention, preparedness and control efforts?
The current round of the FM Global Fire Prevention Grant Program closes Mar. 31. This long-time grant program is open to fire departments and brigades, as well as national, state, regional, local and community organizations. Eligible programs include:
Fire Prevention Education/Training (community outreach initiatives, workshops, publications)
Arson Prevention/Fire Investigation (juvenile fire setter programs, continuing education courses, digital and specialized cameras, accelerant detection equipment)
There’s still time to get in your application. But if you miss the deadline? Fear not. FM Global accepts applications on a rolling basis. If you miss the Mar. 31 deadline, the next review date is July 31.
The FY 2018 SAFER application period will open on Friday, February 15, 2019 at 8:00 a.m. ET and will close on Friday, March 22, 2019 at 5:00 p.m. ET.
Start planning your FY 2018 SAFER Grant application now by reviewing the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO), and Economic Hardship Waivers Information Bulletin (IB), and technical assistance tools below. These tools were produced specifically to help potential applicants begin to plan their 2018 applications ahead of the application period. The tools can be viewed on the AFG website or downloaded to your computer.
This document will provide Recruitment and Retention applicants with a list of the categories and sub-category available in the application as well as information on the level of details needed for each budget line item.
SAFER Grants Help Desk: If you have questions about the technical assistance tools listed below, call or e-mail the SAFER Grants help Desk. The toll-free number is 1-866-274-0960; the e-mail address for questions is email@example.com.
Remember: The FY 2018 FP&S grant application period will open on Monday, November 12, 2018 at 8 AM ET and will close on Friday, December 21, 2018 at 5 PM ET.
Grant Application Webinars
The FP&S Program Office will host 2 webinars to help you with your FY 2018 FP&S grant application. The webinars will provide potential applicants with general information about the FP&S grant program, how to navigate the grant application, and tips for preparing an application. FP&S Program Officers will be available to answer questions.
FY 2018 Fire Prevention & Safety Application Assistance
Please make sure to thoroughly review the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) prior to beginning your application, as it contains the latest updates to the FY 2018 FP&S Grant Program. Begin preparing your application now by using the following application assistance tools:
FY 2018 Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) – This document contains key programmatic updates and application requirements for all eligible applicants.
FY 2018 FP&S Application Checklist – This checklist will help you prepare to answer questions within the grant application. Collecting this information will reduce the time and energy needed to complete your application.
FY 2018 FP&S Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) – This document contains answers to frequently asked questions about the FP&S Grant Program.
FY 2018 Research & Development (R&D) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) – This document contains answers to frequently asked questions specifically about the Research and Development Activity within the FP&S Grant Program.
FY 2018 FP&S Self Evaluation Sheet – This Self Evaluation Sheet will help you understand the criteria that you must address in your Narrative Statement when applying for FP&S grants.
FY 2018 FP&S Cost Share Calculator – This calculator will help you understand and determine your organization’s cost share for FP&S grants.
Grant Application Period: Monday, November 12, 2018, 8 a.m. ET – Friday, December 21, 2018, 5 p.m. (EST)
Grants for Fire Prevention, Fire Safety, and Firefighter Safety Research and Development (R&D)
The purpose of the FP&S Grant Program is to enhance the safety of the public and firefighters with respect to fire and fire-related hazards by assisting fire prevention programs and supporting firefighter health and safety research and development.
The objective of the FY 2018 FP&S Grant Program is for grantees to carry out fire prevention education and training, fire code enforcement, fire/arson investigation, firefighter safety and health programming, prevention efforts, and research and development.
What this grant does for your agency
FP&S Grants are offered to support projects in two activities. This NOFO provides potential eligible applicants with application requirements and details for processing and evaluating applications for financial assistance for both of these activity areas.
Fire Prevention and Safety Activity (FP&S)
The FP&S Activity is designed to reach high-risk target groups and mitigate the incidence of death, injuries, and property damage caused by fire and fire-related hazards.
Accordingly, the four project categories eligible for funding under this activity are:
Community Risk Reduction;
Fire & Arson Investigation; and
National/State/Regional Programs and Studies.
Each category within this activity has specific priorities. For additional details, please see Appendix B – Programmatic Information and Priorities, Section II. Funding Priorities.
Firefighter Safety Research and Development (R&D) Activity
The R&D Activity is aimed at improving firefighter safety, health, or wellness through research and development that reduces firefighter fatalities and injuries.
The 6 project categories eligible for funding under this activity are:
Technology and Product Development;
Database System Development;
Dissemination and Implementation Research;
Preliminary Studies; and
Early Career Investigator
Agencies awarded the FY2018 Fire Prevention & Safety (FP&S) Grants receive grant funds to mitigate the incidence of death, injuries, and property damage caused by fire and fire-related hazards; and to improve firefighter safety, health, or wellness through research and development that reduces firefighter fatalities and injuries.
Fire departments; and national, regional, state, local, federally recognized tribal, and non-profit organizations that are recognized for their experience and expertise in fire prevention and safety programs and activities. Both
private and public non-profit organizations are eligible to apply for funding in this activity.
For-profit organizations, federal agencies, and individuals are not eligible to receive an FP&S Grant Award under the FP&S Activity.
About the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
FEMA helps people before, during, and after disasters. More
Grant applications are due no later than 11:59 p.m. EST, Fri., Dec. 21, 2018.
Application Period: Mon., Sept. 24, 2018, 8 a.m. EST — Fri., Oct. 26, 5 p.m. EST
$315,000,000 available for Fire Service Organizations
The purpose of the AFG Program is to enhance the safety of the public and firefighters
with respect to fire and fire-related hazards. The program provides direct financial
assistance to eligible fire departments, nonaffiliated emergency medical service (EMS)
organizations, and State Fire Training Academies (SFTA). The funds provide critically
needed resources that equip and train emergency personnel to recognized standards,
enhance operational efficiencies, foster interoperability, and support community
What this grant does for your agency
The AFG Program also addresses the following “Core Capabilities” of the National
Fire Management and Suppression
Environmental Response/Health and Safety
Threats and Hazards Identification
Public Health, Healthcare, and Emergency Medical Services
First Responder Grants Senior Consultant Kurt Bradley has helped fire service organizations nationwide win hundreds of millions of dollars in AFG funds. Here are his tips for 2018 AFG:
Review the NOFO carefully 2-3 times. I cannot emphasize this enough. The #1 reason grants are rejected is failure to read and follow directions.
Read the questions several times. Then answer the questions, being careful to take full credit for the answer you give.
High priority items only. Do not bother going after anything that is marked as medium or low priority. AFG will only fund high priority items, and that high priority is set by AFG, not you.
Requesting funds for turnout gear? If going after turnout gear, you need to be replacing at least 50% of your department’s gear. The gear being replaced also needs to be at least 13-14 years of age to get any priority at all.
Choose your answers carefully. Be careful about your selection for why you are replacing equipment or PPE. Read all choices clearly before selecting. There are new choices this year, so read the NOFO carefully before selecting your answer. The wrong answer can cause your request to be instantly rejected. This was a top reason for grants being rejected by computer last year.
Vehicle acquisitions? Even though only about 100 fire trucks are given away per year, apparatus is AFG’s most requested item. Even if you have the strongest need, trucks are a roll of the dice. AFG only funds about 10-15 trucks over the $500,000 mark per year. Have a plan B in mind to replace trucks. Also, be sure your request is “reasonable” in cost, no bells or whistles.
Check your math. Be sure numbers that you put down in answer boxes add up correctly to totals listed elsewhere. They should also agree with what you are stating in your narratives. Inconsistencies are cause for rejection.
Don’t procrastinate. Get your application done, make sure it’s rock solid, and submit it as soon as possible. Don’t wait till a week before it’s due. Start now: get it composed, proof-read, entered, and submitted.
Structure micro-grants to new funding limits. Micro-grants now have a $50,000 maximum, so make sure your micro-grant is specific and keeps under that limit.
Fire departments operating in any of the 50 states, as well as fire departments in the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any federally recognized Indian tribe or tribal organization. A fire department is an agency or organization having a formally recognized arrangement with a state, territory, local, or tribal authority (city, county, parish, fire district, township, town, or other governing body) to provide fire suppression to a population within a geographically fixed primary first due response area.
Nonaffiliated EMS organizations
Nonaffiliated EMS organizations operating in any of the 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any federally recognized Indian tribe or tribal organization. A nonaffiliated EMS organization is an agency or organization that is a public or private nonprofit emergency medical service entity providing medical transport that is not affiliated with a hospital and does not serve a geographic area in which emergency medical services are adequately provided by a fire department.
State Fire Training Academies
A State Fire Training Academy (SFTA) operates in any of the 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Applicants must be designated either by legislation or by a Governor’s declaration as the sole fire service training agency within a state, territory, or the District of Columbia. The designated SFTA shall be the only agency/bureau/division, or entity within that state, territory, or the District of Columbia.
About the FEMA
FEMA’s mission is helping people before, during, and after disasters. More
Grant applications are due no later than Fri., Oct. 26, 5 p.m. EST.
The FY 2018 AFG open application opportunity is right around the corner (September 24 tentative start date) Begin preparing for the FY 2018 open application period by reviewing the available application assistance tools below.
Beginning September 17, 2018, AFGP staff will host two live webinar series to educate organizations on what is new for FY 2018. The Application Workshop webinars will teach attendees about the Assistance to Firefighters Grant program, its mission, which organizations and activities are eligible, and how to apply.
A Fire Program Analyst will provide updates that apply to the FY 2018 application and some help tips in preparing your application. We will also have our Application Walk-thru webinars which gives attendees a section by section view of the application with AFG staff to explain and answer questions.
The Fund Finder News, by Kurt Bradley, Senior Grants Consultant, First Responder Grants
Firefighter jobs: The need is there—but do you have the funding to bring on the personnel?
NFPA 1710 and NFPA 1720 lay out guidelines for staffing levels for fire departments to maintain proper fireground safety during responses to structure fires. For example, if you’re responding to a structure fire at a 2,000 square foot, two-story, single-family home, here’s the staffing NFPA says you should have:
In an urban area (>1,000 people/square mile), at least 15 staff should respond within 9 minutes, 90% of the time
In a suburban area (500–1,000 people/square mile), at least 10 staff should respond within 10 minutes, 80% of the time
In a rural area (<500 people/square mile), at least 6 staff should respond within 14 minutes, 80% of the time
In a remote area (travel distance greater than 8 miles), at least 4 staff should respond, 90% of the time
Are you now looking around the fire hall and thinking, “Well that’s nice, but where am I going get the people to fill those boots?”
The SAFER way to staff fire jobs
Every year, fire service organizations around the country recruit and hire personnel. That’s not because they all suddenly discovered gold in the back of the bunker gear lockers either. It’s because they received SAFER grants, ranging from a few thousand dollars, to millions of dollars in direct grant funding to the department.
Analyze your call logs for the past three years. How many times have you had insufficient numbers of personnel responding to an incident?
Having adequate personnel decreases the time it takes to respond to an incident and get a fire under control, which also decreases the chance of harm to firefighters and the public you are supposed to be protecting.
If you don’t have the numbers, you have the need. Now you can build your case for why your department should receive a SAFER grant.
Make sure your SAFER grant application includes…
Remember, your grant application isn’t you asking for a handout. Your SAFER grant application’s job is to paint a picture of why your department is in need, and to offer a solution to the problem you’ve outlined. SAFER funding is just to help you carry the ball into the end zone.
When working on your SAFER grant, any solution you offer must:
Result in compliance with NFPA1710/1720 at least 85% of the time
Reflect that you reviewed records for the past three years
Determine how many times your department did not comply and what that percentage is
The lower the compliance rate, the better chance you have to get funded. Again though, remember that your solution must gain your department NFPA 1710/1720 compliance at least 85% of the time.
Keeping those jobs after SAFER funding is essential
SAFER isn’t a permanent solution to your staffing levels though. The intent of the program is to help get your department to better staffing levels. It’s your department’s responsibility to keep those jobs going after the SAFER funding period.
As part of your application, detail out how your department will continue funding these new firefighter jobs beyond the SAFER grant’s funding timeframe. You need to offer a sound sustainability plan, such as funds coming from:
Tax abatements from lured industrial facilities or new developments expiring
Attrition through retirement
Measured economic growth
Completion of projects that are already underway that will yield tax revenue upon completion. This cannot be “maybe projects,” though. Work must be underway, with a completion date prior to the grant performance period ending, in order for this to be considered a viable source of revenue to a proposed sustainability plan.
Better staffing and improved incident response
SAFER is a competitive program. But for a department that can demonstrate need and show a path forward beyond the SAFER grant, odds are decent that you just might be filling some more fire boots, complying with NFPA staffing guidelines, and improving your overall department safety and incident response.
If you wish to start considering a SAFER grant for your department for hiring firefighters, it would be beneficial for you to read the Notice of Funding Opportunity for last year’s SAFER grant. Typically the rules don’t change much from year to year.