Since this week Hurricane Sandy is hitting the north east, now seems like the perfect time to write about Eric J. Wynn’s The eGuide to Grant Writing for FEMA. *I received a review copy of the ebook from the author.
According to his bio, Eric is a Florida native who has been involved in disaster management since 2004. He has worked with many local government agencies and nonprofits to access funds through the FEMA Public Assistance Program. His book is a great resource for those in the private nonprofit community who need help, especially after a natural disaster.
The ebook is short, meant to be a guide. It provides statistics on the number of applicants versus number of agencies in the U.S. who could use help from FEMA (surprisingly, only 157 agencies have applied to FEMA after a disaster, although there are 87,000 government agencies and 1.5 million private nonprofit agencies in the U.S.).
Eric also shows how easy it is to write grants. The trick is to research FEMA a bit and know what they look for in their applications. Eric writes the steps necessary to successfully apply for a grant, giving specific examples and links to helpful resources for more detailed explanations.
The ebook provides a lot of statistics, such as the number of agencies who apply to FEMA (157) versus the number of government and nonprofit agencies that exist in the U.S. (87,000 and 1.5 million, respectively). Eric also explains how the FEMA process works, who is involved, which facilities are eligible (for example, recreations facilities cannot apply for grants), and what costs FEMA can cover.
It’s best for FEMA applicants to apply as soon as possible. So even if the exact costs of a project are not yet known, Eric stresses that it’s better to get the process going and use estimates. FEMA provides equipment rates and Eric gives links to sub grant applications and project worksheets that writers can use as templates for their own projects.
According to Eric, there are five reasons why grants do not get funding, and the number one reason is due to math errors. Therefore, it’s very important for writers to check their arithmetic. This ebook includes a link to an Excel workbook which should help.
Even if grants are initially rejected, there is always an appeal process. Eric goes through the process and gives examples of why a grant may have been rejected. Filling out project worksheets is important, and a whole chapter is devoted to detailing how to correctly complete a project worksheet. The end of the ebook also has links to references and other useful materials.
For anyone looking to write grants for FEMA, I highly recommend consulting Eric Wynn’s ebook. The impression I got from his book is it’s important to understand and follow FEMA’s guidelines in order to ensure a grant is accepted and funded in a timely manner. To learn more, check out Eric’s LinkedIn group, The eGuide to Grant Writing for FEMA.