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Thread: Get over it.

  1. #1
    Forum Member wellsfr's Avatar
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    Default Get over it.

    Im going to apologize up front to those I am about to offend. I know how much work is involved in writing these grants and how disapointed you feel when turned down but we all have to look past this and be positive about the program as a whole. The second year into the Fire Acts Grant was a lot easier than the first and my guess is that improvements will be made next year. I've waited for 20 years as Fire Chief for an opportunity to come along like this and that is all i've asked is a chance at Federal dollars. Every dept in the country has needs and wants and your own depts needs are the most important to you. The forum pages i've read here are so varied in conent, from good luck to all, to thats my money and if I cant have it nobody should. It will kill the program or tie it up in red tape if we dont unite in the idea of whats good for one is good for all. If we stick together and show need and unity the grant process could continue forever, if we rip at it and pull it apart it will fall. All needs can be met if we work together on this. I have read comments like the big rich dept got money and we didnt and I wont apply again. If you dont ask then dont expect any thing. I will apply as long as the program lives and if I dont get one red cent I'll know I tried and be happy for those that did.
    wellsfr
    We've been doing so much for so long with so little. We can do almost anything with nothing.


  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber mtnfireguy's Avatar
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    Amen
    Buckle Up, Slow Down, Arrive Alive
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    IACOJ 2003

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    Thumbs up Oh yea!!!!!!!!!!

    If anyone was offended by wellsfr, rethink your entire career! I thought we worked as a team, together to strive for the best for the ENTIRE group. Spit in the eye of your brothers, they still help dont they? Let us all make this a better experience, I was ****ed last year when we were rejected, this year we still dont know, butfor sure the process is easier, and as with anything relatively new.. it will experience growing pains.
    Think of it this way.... I will write a grant next year to develop a new grant project from fema, this one dosent work well enough. That doesnt make much sense to me!

    Just one guys thoughts, dont take it personaly!

  4. #4
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    Well Said!
    SERVING FOR PRIDE
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  5. #5
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    Wink Well Said...BUT

    Well said and I am One of those that needs to get over it

    That being said I think all of us "Dear Johns" will "get over it" with time. Speaking for myself, I get better with each passing day. (Now here is the But part ) BUT, I need some direction from FEMA to know where I was "kicked out". I mean I DO NOT want someone to sit down with me and say write it this way. What I do want is someone to say "statistically, you didn't measure up" or "you filled this part out wrong" or just go ahead and tell me "you and these other 7500 need not apply again" .
    I think part of the problem comes when you have a new "game", and the players(firemen) don't understand where the rankings for the "play-offs" are coming from. Understand that I don't want to offend any of the boys with guns (policemen)BUT they have proffesional grant writers on staff at the Ctiy Halls of America helping our Brothers in Crime Prevention out. This is a whole different program and it just needs a little tweaking. There will be more "sour grapes" as the process continues and everyone is entitled to their own opinions. The shoe fits both feet don't criticize anyones response on here until you've walked a few miles in their shoes. Thanks for your time, take care, and God Bless Us Everyone
    Warning: Persons with Heart Conditions Should Not Board this Ride.

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    wellsfr and ffpm43... VERY WELL SAID..
    Assistant Chief
    Tim Whitham
    Wood Heights Fire Protection District

  7. #7
    Member HazMan's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Wellsfr

    Couldn't have said it better myself.

    As far as FEMA guidance goes..... I think that FEMA did a fine job in trying to provide guidance up front - from the rollout class to the guidance document to the help line - they told us what they were looking for and gave us every opportunity to succeed...They told us what the priorites were.

    I feel little compassion for departments that applied for non-priority items and then seem shocked that they didn't get the grant. It's like ordering pizza in a chinese food place and then complaining that the pepperoni tastes like teriyaki.

    Your department's biggest need may not have been the priority of this years grant program. Learn from it and, as Wellsfr so kindly put it - get over it!

    To your point ncfirecapt, you are right that we must walk in the other's shoes. However, since we have neither we been awarded a grant nor denied one I guess I'm not qualified to make the above statements. I do know that regardless of the outcome, I will be thankful that my department even had a chance to participate.

    Thanks FEMA!

  8. #8
    Forum Member wellsfr's Avatar
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    At this point in my life I'm not afraid to say I dont need to walk a 100 Ft in those shoes. I've written and been turn down for enough grants that I thought I may be using the wrong language. I've worn out many pair of shoes walking those miles for my dept.
    Last year we were all confused, and new to the process, FEMA was as well, and it showed. If you remember, Headlines read about how nobody seamed interested, or was applying for grants, as the deadline grew nearer. Infact they were deluged with apps at the end, it just took a while to wade through the paper work. This year came around and the experience kicked in especially if you talked to those that had applied and gone to a FEMA workshop. Last year I emailed nearly 100 copies of our winning grant proposal to other depts. After being rejected on my PPE grant And accepted for a training grant, I learned that priorities were to train, then provide equipment to use the training and so on. Alot of great info was passed along at these work shops.
    In my case I spent over 160 hours researcing and writing this years request starting in January,and no Im not paid for this, we are all volunteer.
    The numbers will also show a huge number of winning grants were written by firefighters not grant writters. After all who knows you better, what you need, who you serve, and what your challenges are.
    Please dont get the impression that I dont support you in the right to express an opinion but remember that an itch is just an itch until you pick at it, then it becomes a scab, and if you continue to scratch, you bleed. so if rejected this year, scratch it once and heal.
    Lets move to support all and pass the knowledge.
    wellsfr
    We've been doing so much for so long with so little. We can do almost anything with nothing.

  9. #9
    Forum Member jmkfire's Avatar
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    Default

    Last year we were denied our application, and like so many others, I took it personally because of all the work that I had put into it. After taking a deep breath, I began taking the time to look at the application again. (I hadn't read the guidelines very well) There were some items not on their priority list. This year I had to rework our application when the guidelines came out. This time I stuck to it like my life depended on it! It was successful this time around. We actually asked for about the same items ( air packs, turnout gear etc..) as last time, but dropped what we wanted but was not in the guidelines. This program is a godsend for the depts across this country. Three years ago, we couldn't have even imagined a project like this. Yes there may be some that appear to have "slipped thru the cracks" but this grant program is still better than what we had 3 yrs ago! As long as we continue to support it, FEMA can make improvements or changes to the process. I would rather see FEMA try to do that than lose the program all together. There is always room for critisim, as long as it is constructive yet supportive of the grant program.
    Just my 2 cents worth.

    "Just remember. No matter where you go. There you are!"

  10. #10
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    As I read about everyones disappointment and frustrations about fema, I still believe its a great program. We received our "Dear John" letter yesterday and today I am looking forward to re-applying next year. This program has benifited thousands of volunteer and career departments including departments in my area. Being mutual-aid with these awarded departments betters our firefighting needs.If their awarded a vehicle or equipment grant our departmnt can call for that vehicle or equipment if needed. If its a training grant,we benifit by training with them. I know its hard to accept but indirectly we all BENIFIT from the fema grant program. Being negitive about the program only hurts the brotherhood, we need to keep in mind why the program was established and all the good that has and will come from it.


    cvfd.Lt

  11. #11
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    Smile

    Just a response to what i have read, i agree we need to be positive but i understand the hurt also. Last year when we didn't get our grant i was mad because i seen departments getting grants and make you wonder how and why. We have a retired firefighter who wrote our grant last year and this year, he submitted the same grant. Someone mentioned grant writers, most rural county goverment has a goverment grant writer that they can use, in our case we let the grant writer look at the grant submitted last year and he said he would take care of it and we didn't get anything, this year our retired firefighter wrote it and thank god we was a lucky department and got our grant. I guess what i am trying to say we are firefighters we know what we need, grant writers unless involved in fire service has no ideal what firefighters need, we can do better ourselves because firefighters are the best. GOD BLESS ALL

  12. #12
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    I am thankful for the grant program and grateful for the chance to apply. I don't mean anything I say to be negative for the program. I congradulate those who got grants and wish those waiting well.
    I do, however, agree with NCFIRECAPT ... I wish I knew specifically why our application failed. I don't need spoon fed ... just to know what didn't match up. I read the guidelines (several times), went to the local FEMA seminar, and read everything I could about how to match FEMA's priorities. I believed I did that. I have read the guidelines and our application since getting our Dear John letter. I still do know what got us dismissed in the first 7500. How can I improve for next year if I do not know what did not match this year.
    A lot has been said about the narrative and grant writers ... someone correct me if I am wrong ... but my understanding was the first 7500 DEAR JOHNS never had the narrative read. We were dismissed by the computer based on some formula of the pages that preceeded the narrative. I'm not sure how we can best show need by computer answers to questions.
    I do not believe my department is the only department that has need .... I am tankful that we are not the most needy department in the country ... but our need does exist ... and I do not think this year's process allowed my department to show our need.
    I am hopeful that constructive criticism --- not random bitching and woe is me --- can improve the system in future years.
    I sincerely believe that if FMMA is going to use the first few pages of computer information to eliminate applications ... then the application process should be two part .... If you don't make it through the first part ... why even submit the second part.
    I mean all comments to be constructive to help improve a great program for the Americian Fire Service......Just my thoughts...
    BB

  13. #13
    Forum Member wellsfr's Avatar
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    To further clairify my opinion.
    1 You and I are entilted to our opinions

    2 Dejection is natural

    3 Constructive critisism is good ( although I do not like that term critisism, maybe it should be, Ideas to make the system better)

    4 I have seen the coment several times "we submited the same grant last year and didnt win either time" does this really suprise any one?
    I am not picking on any one individual post or applicant only the trend of sour grapes and hostility.


    5 I haven't gotten word of sucsess or rejection yet so please do not think I'm standing on a high horse telling you how to fill out your grant. I think I did it right but I may have screwed the pooch .

    6 In my expirence negativity will only produce negative results.

    7 If rejected I will want to know how to improve my chances as well but I will also reflect on the fact that this is a crap shoot (one with very good odds I might add and being from Nevada I know it)some will win and some will lose. Or maybe my need isn't as great as others. But I will try harder next time and find out from the winners where I failed.

    8 FEMA will take some time to sort out the data and answers will come back. They did last year and I have no reason to believe it wont happen this time. The grant program is in its infancy and will take along time to perfect. We need to nurture it and support it like a child and not abuse it.

    We are fire fighters and stare into the dragons mouth everyday. We have always gone the extra mile to fight any challenge thrown at us and we must do the same here. Help yourself, help each other, stand together and share the knowledge but dont expect any thing to be easy. We have to work for this money not complain about it.
    wellsfr
    We've been doing so much for so long with so little. We can do almost anything with nothing.

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    Lightbulb Gettin over it

    What Im about to say are my opinions and do not reflect my department in any way. Just me saying whats on my mind.

    Can anyone help me out as far as how many applications you can send in. I mean can you ask for more than one thing on one application like can you ask for a truck and turnout gear and a cascade system all on one application or is it just one thing and thats it. If anyone knows please set me straight on that thanks.

    Anyway back to the subject. I am happy for all the recipients
    But my beef is this. Just for an example Our dept is a county dept, we are paid There is a total of 17 of us counting chief and assistant chief. Last year we had someone write the application for us and still recieved nothing.While the city dept which has 25 personell I think More money in there budget newer eqiupment etc they recieved 2 grants last year and one this year so far. Not to mention the smaller volunteer depts that are in our county with less than we have which as far as I know got nothing also. Now I might sound like a sore loser or whatever thats fine with me because anyway you look at it you cant say that is a fair process. Something is wrong with that.
    I may be alone in thinking this but what I think is a fair solution to that is if a dept recieves a grant they should not be able to apply for at least 1 year. that way it gives everyone a little more fair ground or something to that effect. Its like a bunch kids getting some food how is fair it for one kid to get 3 servings while another kid doesnt even get one serving. Its like this yes I am dissapointed we didnt get anything but I also know there are other depts that have way less than we have and it sucks they got nothing and a dept that operates on a budget of 1 million or more with new trucks in their bays recieving 70,000 for fire safety(example only)

    something needs to be done to even things out more
    well thats just me talkin

    And again I am happy for all those that recieved their grants. Like the guy said we are all part of a brotherhood and we gotta stick together. And there is some comfort knowing some departments are getting what they need but the process still needs tweaking.
    Last edited by Rcashen; 08-26-2002 at 09:17 AM.

  15. #15
    Forum Member wellsfr's Avatar
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    Last year a dept could send two requests for the different catagories. For instance one for training onr for PPE. This year only one request per dept. Paid depts compete for 55% of the funds and volunteers for 45% each catagory is aloted xx dollars for Vehicles, Safety and FF equip, Fire prevention and so on. If dept A receives a grant for fire fighting equipment, he didnt compete with dept b applying for a truck or dept C applying for fire prevention. As of today USFA was making more Fire Prevention grants available (probably not enough applicants for the alloted funds) So to sum up if you big dept got a fire prevention grant it may have been just because they applied and you didnt. You were not competing fot the same dollars. Please if I am wrong on any of this anyone, please straighten me out.
    As for the one grant per year in many cases like mine this years grant is needed more than last year. After recieving a training grant last year I have more firefighters and no turnouts for them. I know all cases are not the same.
    Last edited by wellsfr; 08-24-2002 at 12:37 AM.
    wellsfr
    We've been doing so much for so long with so little. We can do almost anything with nothing.

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    Wellsfr... Hope you 're right about the funds for fire prevention.... still waiting to hear if we get our 10K in that category. Whos your source? And congrats to you for yours!

  17. #17
    Forum Member wellsfr's Avatar
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    wellsfr
    We've been doing so much for so long with so little. We can do almost anything with nothing.

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    Wellsfr..... got it and thaks. They did this last year also. I believe that our request tihs year even falls into that category.

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    Getting Our dear John early with the other 7400 or so I'ed like to know if it was one or more of the computer questions. We found that when we sent in some of the answers, and looked back the answers were not what we sent. It would help to know We'll try next year, still cant afford our needs--not greeds

  20. #20
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    Default Changed info?

    We had some of the info changed on our app too.
    All of a sudden we had more trucks in our list than I orginally stated.
    How about you, Myron Pierce?
    What had changed on yours?

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