Applying for tactical gear grants can be an arduous process. There’s a lot of legwork involved in selecting the grants you want to apply for, reading all of their qualifications, and taking the time to identify and articulate a specific need inside your organization.
At Vel Tye, we often work with police departments that are either allocating their just-awarded grant monies or working towards winning a grant. It’s always our pleasure to do everything we can to help the men and women who serve the public secure the funds they need to do their jobs well.
Before you apply for a tactical gear grant, ask yourself these three questions.
1) Are we actually eligible for this grant?
Grants can be surprisingly limited. We’ve seen all too many police departments do a lot of the initial work involved in applying for a grant (commissioning studies, contacting tactical gear companies for quotes, etc.) only to realize later they’re not qualified for the grant in the first place.
Look at the grant requirements very, very carefully before deciding whether or not it’s worth pursuing. It’s not a bad idea to have another objective member of the team also take a look just to be sure. Common disqualifiers include having received funding from another entity in the recent past, having gear that is ageing but not unusable, and having a department that is smaller/larger than specified.
2) Is our need clear and meetable?
Grant providers aren’t in the business of doling out money for nebulous issues. They want to see a clear, defined need in your department and also to understand exactly how their funds will help you meet it. It’s your job to identify your department’s tactical gear pain points then recommend a fix if you were to be awarded grant monies.
Spend time digging into data and trends to identify your department’s most clear and immediately solvable problem. Are officers being hurt in the line of duty because there aren’t enough tactical vests to go around? Do patrol cars have to wait for EMTs to arrive because they’re not equipped with basic lifesaving tools like first aid kids and tourniquets? The more data you can provide in your grant—including data regarding what you expect to happen once you purchase new equipment—the better.
3) Do we have the time and resources we need to complete the grant application?
Grant applications seem straightforward, but they can actually be deceptively complex. It takes a significant amount of time and effort to complete just one grant application thoroughly; that’s why larger departments employ people full-time just for this purpose.
The first step is determining the point-person for the grant. From there, work backwards to devise a schedule for obtaining information, getting quotes, and analyzing data as needed. Be sure to allow double the time you think you’ll need to write and revise the application itself. It’s the final distillation of all your hard-earned work.
Tactical gear grants are an excellent way to help bridge the gap between annual funding and pressing equipment needs. At Vel Tye, we’ve worked with hundreds of grant applicants to provide comprehensive quotes, bulk pricing, and to fulfill grant-funded orders.
Reach out today to find out how we can help you maximize your grant funds.