TWO GRANTS CURRENTLY AVAILABLE FOR FIRE/EMS DEPARTMENTS

TWO GRANTS CURRENTLY AVAILABLE FOR FIRE/EMS DEPARTMENTS
By Steve Meyer
Steve Meyer Consulting LLC

There are two grants currently available to assist fire and EMS departments: the Lowes Charitable Foundation Grant and the Firefighters Charitable Foundation Grant. Both of these are small grants, but may come in handy for a small need or to fund a portion of a larger need. Brief details about both grants are below. More can be found out at the websites provided.

LOWE’S CHARITABLE AND EDUCATIONAL FOUNDATION
The Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation is dedicated to improving the communities we serve through support of public education, community improvement projects and home safety initiatives.

Founded in 1957, the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation (LCEF) has a long and proud history of contributing to grassroots community projects. LCEF awards millions annually to diverse organizations across the United States.
The three grant programs that Lowes has that appear most favorable to fire and EMS activities are Lowes Community Partner Grants, Hometown Grants and Small Grants.
Full details on the grants can be found at http://responsibility.lowes.com/community-relations/

FIREFIGHTERS CHARITABLE FOUNDATION
The Firefighters Charitable Foundation continues to provide assistance to those in need. Grants are given to assist local fire/disaster victims, fire prevention education, volunteer fire department equipment purchase, and community safety programs.
There are four types of grants:
• AED (Automatic External Defibrillator
• Fire Department Equipment
• Community Smoke Detector Program
• Juvenile Fire Setter Program
Detailed information about this program can be found at http://www.ffcf.org/grants.html.

I am available to assist ant fire or EMS department with applications for these grants or to provide more information. Contact me at gfdchief@netins.net. Find out more about my grant and emergency management consulting services at http://www.stevemeyerconsulting.com. See my blog postings about grant writing at https://stevemeyerblog20131.wordpress.com/.

Are You Grant-Ready?

SUCCESSFUL GRANT WRITING—YOUR GUIDE

PART 3: Are You Grant-Ready?

By Steve Meyer, Steve Meyer Consulting LLC

In the majority of situations, developing a grant proposal is not as easy as filling out a form. If you have chosen to work with a grant consultant it is not as simple as contacting the consultant and telling them you want $_____ for _____ project. With either situation before you even begin the grant application process you need to be Grant Ready.

Your ultimate aim in being Grant-Ready is to have all of the information necessary to describe your organization and project in sufficient detail that you leave the grant reviewer with no questions about what you are doing, what you need in order to accomplish your objectives and what the benefit is going to be. Couple this with a convincing narrative and you’ve set the stage for thumbs up to funding your proposal.

In a nutshell grant-readiness entails providing detailed information about your organization and its project and backing your project proposal up with statistics and data that provide credibility to your project and its outcomes. The variables and data sources that this is contingent upon will change somewhat with different venues but there are some common denominators in the information you need to have available for all grants, including:

• Project description
• Organizational profile and mission statement
• Historical documents and statistical data relative to your project
• Articles, research reports and white papers relative to your project
• Annual reports of your organization
• Project budget
• Census Data
• Analytical data relative to your project
• Projected outcomes

If you are working with a grant consultant it may not be necessary that you have all of this information assembled. At the very least, though, you need to provide the consultant with the resources or contacts they need to pull all of this vital information together. The better the information you can provide, the easier it will be for your consultant to develop a competitive proposal. Either you or someone affiliated with the project will have to be a go-to person that the consultant can rely on to help them find answers and information vital to an award winning proposal.

The all important piece of the puzzle for being Grant Ready if you are tapping into a charitable foundation grant is having 501c3 status established for your sponsoring organization or cause.

Be prepared to spend some time becoming Grant Ready. The time you spend becoming Grant Ready is directly proportional to your chances for funding success.

Bottom line: if you aren’t Grant Ready it will be a wild scramble assimilating the necessary information before the grant application deadline. And, if you aren’t Grant Ready you are in a position of presenting a grant proposal that is fearfully inadequate.

Steve Meyer is a grant writing and emergency management consultant. You can find out more about his services at his website http://www.stevemeyerconsulting.com.

10 Steps to Grant Application Success

SUCCESSFUL GRANT WRITING—YOUR GUIDE

PART 2: 10 Steps to Grant Application Success

By Steve Meyer, Steve Meyer Consulting LLC

For those venturing into the complex and mysterious world of grant procurement there is ten steps that need to be followed. Following are the ten steps with a brief explanation of each. More in depth explanations of each step will follow in subsequent blogs.

Step 1: Determine your needs
Determine what your needs are and formulate the need into a program.

Step 2: Find a grant that is applicable to your program
This is the search phase. There are thousands of grants available through the government and various charitable foundations. The key becomes finding the grant(s) with parameters that align with your program.

Step 3: Determine the grant requirements
Every grant will have certain “things” they need in your grant proposal. One of the main reasons a grant is not funded is because the proposal does not address these “things.”

Step 4: Determine if you will develop the grant application yourself or if you need the assistance of a consultant
Once you reach Steps 2and 3 and you have looked at the grant requirements you may determine the application and proposal process is daunting or demands too much time. If you are serious about the grant, then it is best to use the services of a professional grant consultant.

Step 5: Pull the necessary data together
Every grant is going to require data of some sort. Having this data available and pulling it all together is what we call Grant Readiness. This can be, and often is, a time consuming effort.

Step 6: Develop a compelling proposal
This is the part that grant evaluators will pay the most attention to when deciding if they will fund your proposal. If word smithing isn’t your craft, you’re better off using the services of grant consultant.

Step 7: Complete the application
Every grant is going to have some fill in the blank portions. Submitting an application with any blank left open is a fatal error.

Step 8: Proofread the application
Make sure your application is free of grammatical errors and everything reads well and any figures you present are accurate.

Step 9: Have someone else review the application
A second set of eyes reviewing your application will help catch errors and maybe shed some insight into other things you should consider covering in the crucially important narrative sections.

Step 10: Submit the application
When everything is complete, double check to see that you have everything that the grant application requires. Also make sure you are providing the required number of copies if it is a paper application. Then, make sure you submit the application by deadline. Believe it or not, I’ve had clients who neglected this final step

Steve Meyer is a grant writing and emergency management consultant. You can find out more about his services at his website http://www.stevemeyerconsulting.com.