WASHINGTON – U.S. Ben Cardin and Senators Barbara A. Mikulski (both D-Md.) along with Congressman Chris Van Hollen and Congressman John Delaney today announced the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF), headquartered in Emmitsburg, Md., has been awarded a $1,428,572 Fire Prevention and Safety Grant (FP&S) to continue its online learning and distance education program, Everyone Goes Home. Congress created the NFFF to lead a nationwide effort to remember America’s fallen firefighters. Since 1992, the nonprofit has developed and expanded programs to increase training for active duty firefighters while honoring fallen fire heroes and assisting their families and coworkers.
The FPS grant is funded through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program (AFGP).
“First responders across Maryland put their lives on the line daily to protect their communities. Nationwide, our fire fighters deserve the peace-of-mind that comes with knowing that they have federal partners committed to helping them secure the right resources and training to do their job well and return safely home to their families,” said Senator Cardin. “Protecting our first responders is a matter of national security and the right thing to do for our communities.”
“Firefighters and their families already understand the hazards of being on the job, whether it is rushing into a burning building or suffering from physical exhaustion and injury. These funds in the federal checkbook are crucial to providing training to protect our protectors,” Senator Mikulski said. “First responders protect our homes and communities, and the federal government has a responsibility to protect them by providing them with the tools and training they need to do their jobs safer and smarter. I will continue to fight for the training, equipment and staffing our protectors and communities deserve.”
“The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation honors the heroes who face danger every time safety in our communities is threatened,” said Congressman Van Hollen. “This important funding will help prevent firefighter injuries and deaths as they bravely work to protect us and our families.”
“The American people rely on firefighters every day, in small towns and big cities they save lives,” said Congressman John K. Delaney. “We have an obligation to support these public servants and their families and we should do everything we can to improve their safety and training programs – they can’t save us otherwise. That’s why I’m proud to announce this federal grant will go to the NFFF in Frederick County to expand their educational and safety programs.”
The NFFF will use the award funds to continue and expand its Everyone Goes Home program, which works to prevent firefighter line of duty deaths and injuries through increased training and awareness. Since the program’s inception in 2005, line of duty deaths have decreased by 27 percent. Including this award, the NFFF has received more than $12 million to support the Everyone Goes Home program and their critical efforts. For more information, contact Chief Ron Siarnicki, Executive Director of the NFFF, at 301-447-1365.
FP&S grants are part of the Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) and support projects that enhance the safety of the public and firefighters from fire and hazard emergencies. AFG grants fund firefighting equipment, personal protection equipment, training, firefighting vehicles, firefighter/first responder safety projects, and staffing recruitment and retention, as well as public fire safety education.
Since 2001, Maryland fire departments and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) units have received almost $195 million in fire grant funding.