Lessons learned from helping police get funding

Over 200 cars were stolen in one year, and according to the UCRs, there were only 19 auto theft charges filed during that time period. Why should the funder continue to pay for the salary and benefits of a full time detective, plus program fees, if you’re not making arrests?


Fortunately the silence turned into a very animated and informative discussion.
When I requested the UCR’s from the Records Division, I specified Auto Theft, not charges stemming from the theft of an auto. Apparently, there is a difference. I didn’t realize that I should have been looking at a menu of possible charges ranging from receiving stolen property to insurance fraud.

In my mind, the civilian mind, I thought that my task to obtain funding for the Auto Theft Unit was pretty straightforward: car is reported stolen; an investigation begins; arrests are made; how many of each?

After more than a decade of working with law enforcement agencies across the United States, I was recently reminded of the importance of asking questions and listening to the client. But it’s a two-way street.

Whether you are working with in-house staff or contracting an outside grant writer, make sure that they have the information to accurately depict the work that is being done and what you are trying to achieve. Communication is an essential component of a rewarding grant collaboration process.

I had the pleasure of working with a team of law enforcement professionals who were willing to educate and learn. With a little bit of guidance, they were able to produce a sound argument to implement a new project. The funding was approved and I was proud to be a part of this experience as I continue my professional development.

I’m ready for the next challenge.

The experts at Policegrantshelp.com provide grant writing assistance to help departments succeed. Contact expert@policegrantshelp.com to learn about our services.

About the author

Samantha Dorm is a Senior Grant Writer and Consultant with PoliceGrantsHelp. In her current role with a county on the East Coast, she coordinates countywide grant-related projects, and serves as an advisor to various boards and committees. Samantha has also worked with criminal justice agencies through the Weed & Seed Program, and was instrumental in the creation of a county-level Criminal Justice Advisory Board.

Sam has provided guidance to various law enforcement and non-profit agencies throughout the United States to enable them to obtain alternative funding and she also provides instruction on statistical compilation, analysis, and program development. Passionate about law enforcement, Samantha works with state and federal legislators to acquire funding for gang prevention/suppression efforts, equipment and training funds for tactical teams, and provides technical assistance for the development and implementation of new technologies designed to enhance officer safety.

Contact Sam Dorm for Grant Assistance.

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