Insights From the First Responder Grants Seminar

Assistance to Firefighters Grants
Assistance to Firefighters Grants


With the application period for FEMA’s Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) Program opening in a few days, I’m glad that I attended a two-day First Responder Grants Seminar in Massachusetts a few weeks ago. 

Receiving nearly 12,000 applications a year from across the United States and its territories, the AFG is one of the most competitive federal grant programs. 

And with each application reviewer given only about seven minutes to make a decision on each of the hundreds of applications he or she looks at over the course of a few days, writing a strong, compelling AFG application is equals parts science and art.  

I was grateful to pick up so much valuable information during my seminar – terrific tips that we will be using this year to make sure that the applications we write stand out in a very crowded field. 

For example, I learned:

  • That there are certain phrases that should be used in the application narrative

  • That there are project cost thresholds that make some applications more likely to be funded than others

  • That “Critical Infrastructure” covers a lot more than what most applicants think

  • What critical errors many applicants are making that cause their applications to be rejected without ever getting to the Review Panel

  • Why it’s so important to make sure your call counts are accurate and up-to-date

If your fire department is in need of equipment, turnout gear, a vehicle or any of the many items typically funded by the AFG Program, Triad would be happy to write a strong, competitive application for you. The AFG Program opens October 11 and closes November 18, so the sooner you contact us, the sooner we can work together to put forth a winning application.


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