MFA continues grant program for volunteer fire departments
The MFA Charitable Foundation has once again partnered with the University of Missouri Extension Fire and Rescue Training Institute (FRTI) to offer grants that can be used to equip volunteer fire departments with the training and resources they need to save lives and protect property.
Launched in 2019, this first-of-its-kind program has awarded more than $65,000 over the past two years to fire and rescue entities across the state. For 2021, the MFA Charitable Foundation board of trustees approved $35,000 for the grant program.
Each award recipient must provide a 50% match for their requested funding. The award maximum is $2,000 and minimum is $500.
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, Missouri has 775 registered fire departments, and nearly 85% are volunteer or mostly volunteer. These entities are largely dependent on donations, not tax dollars, to run their operations.
“It seems there’s never enough funding for a fire department, but in rural areas, that’s really, truly the case,” said Gail Hagans-Reynolds, FRTI educational program coordinator. “When there isn’t a municipality to pay the bills, even the smallest amount of funding can make a big difference.”
The application period is open through Nov. 30, with award notifications expected after Feb. 1, 2022. Depending on the availability of funds, the goal is to provide grants to at least one recipient in each of the nine Fire Mutual Aid Regions in Missouri. Each agency must be registered with the Missouri Division of Fire Safety.
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