Funding priorities for FEMA's Fire Prevention & Safety grant

Applying for the Fire Prevention & Safety grant? Don’t miss these important details


The Fire Prevention & Safety Grant application is currently open and will remain open until 5 pm Eastern Time on February 18. The program offers $46 million in funding under two major categories: Fire Prevention Activities and Research & Development Activities. 

Fire Prevention Activities

This activity is designed to reach high-risk target groups and lessen the incidence of death and injuries caused by fire and related risks. The programs eligible for funding under this activity are:

Applications for the Fire Prevention & Safety grant are due Feb. 18. Learn about this year’s funding priorities.
Applications for the Fire Prevention & Safety grant are due Feb. 18. Learn about this year’s funding priorities. (Photo/Getty Images)
  1. Community Risk Reduction
  2. Wildfire Risk Reduction
  3. Code Enforcement/Awareness
  4. Fire & Arson Investigation
  5. National/State/Regional Programs and Projects

Both private and public nonprofit organizations as well as fire departments are eligible to apply for funding under this activity.

Research & Development Activity

The R&D Activity is aimed at improving firefighter safety, health or wellbeing through research and development that reduces firefighter fatalities and injuries. The five project categories eligible for funding under this activity are:

  1. Clinical Studies
  2. Technology and Product Development
  3. Database System Development
  4. Preliminary Studies
  5. Early Career Investigator

Again, both private and public non-profit organizations are eligible to apply for funding in this activity. Fire departments are not eligible to apply for funding in this activity.

Funding Priorities

Under the Fire Prevention Category FEMA has determined that effective fire prevention and education programs should be based on a comprehensive plan that contains elements designed to result in attendees gaining knowledge of fire prevention, learning how to apply that knowledge in everyday life, and ultimately, changing their behavior based upon understanding and acceptance of the new knowledge and skills they have learned.

People learn best when information is presented simply, repeated often, sustained over a period of time, and practiced. This is especially true when educating children about fire and life safety. The five-step planning process, as developed by the U.S. Fire Administration and recommended by FEMA, is used for the design, implementation and evaluation of comprehensive education programs. Narratives for Fire Prevention & Safety Grant funding must include details on your organization’s process, including:

  1. Risk analysis
  2. Community partners
  3. Intervention strategy
  4. Implementation of the proposed program
  5. How it will be evaluated

The highest funding priority under the Community Risk Reduction Activity is to target a specific high-risk population and conduct both door-to-door smoke alarm installations and home safety inspections as part of a comprehensive home fire safety education campaign. Such campaigns must also include an educational program delivered to the occupant at the time of the installation and inspection. Installation may include combination smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.

Through the Fire Prevention & Safety Grant program, FEMA promotes the use of smoke alarms powered by non-removable, long-life batteries and enclosed within a tamper-proof housing. FEMA requires residential smoke alarms to be installed in all locations according to the NFPA 72 National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, 2019 Edition, Chapter 29.

Another priority program under Community Risk Reduction is sprinkler awareness. This program must be open to the entire community and feature topics such as educating the public about sprinklers, promoting sprinklers and demonstrating working models of sprinklers. Installation of sprinkler systems is only eligible if proposed as part of a sprinkler demonstration/educational effort.

Community risk assessments are also eligible under the Community Risk Reduction activity. This includes wildland urban/interface assessments.

Additional Details

The Fire Prevention & Safety Grant is a comprehensive attempt to address fire prevention and education issues. There are several additional activities fire departments and other organizations can apply for under this program, including Juvenile Fire Setter Programs, Fire and Arson Investigation, Code Enforcement, Training for Fire Prevention Instructors and General Prevention Awareness.

The Fire Prevention & Safety Grant program also offers regional opportunities to address fire prevention and education in your area. I strongly urge you to read the Notice of Funding Opportunity before you begin your application.

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