Disaster Recovery Funding Opportunity

The APA Foundation extends expert planning services, including disaster recovery and mitigation planning, to underserved, resource-limited communities in the United States and abroad through Community Planning Assistance Teams and other planning resources.

In response to the 2017 hurricanes and disasters, APA members and the APA Foundation partnered to raise funds for disaster recovery community assistance. Planners in communities affected by these disasters are invited to apply for grants to assist their community recovery efforts.

Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis through June 18, 2018. Communities and individuals are encouraged to submit applications as soon as possible.

Disaster Recovery RFP Webinar

Considering a submission? Watch the Disaster Recovery Funding Opportunity webinar to learn more about eligibility requirements from APA staff. (Don't forget to check out Appendix A for guidance on a CPAT proposal.)

Still Have Questions?

Please review the FAQ section below, or submit your question to Foundation@planning.org.

Application Forms

Request for Proposals

The Request for Proposals outlines the purpose of this funding opportunity as well as the eligibility criteria. All submissions must include responses to the questions listed on this form.

Appendix A

Appendix A describes Community Planning Assistance Teams.

Appendix B

Appendix B is required for Community Planning Assistance Teams requests.


Please submit any questions or concerns to Foundation@planning.org. APA staff will respond to your inquiry and will update the FAQ below to share the response with all potential applicants. 

What type of request is eligible for Foundation support?

The following activities qualify for support:

  • Travel and professional expenses for APA Community Planning Assistance Teams (CPAT) or similar program in affected communities.
  • Expenses for planners in affected communities to attend disaster-focused planning educational events (training, workshops, symposium) based on the following selection criteria (see page 2 of the Request for Proposals form).
  • Expenses for disaster mitigation training offered by chapters and divisions in affected communities.
  • Knowledge-building programs and/or campaigns that advance local/regional resiliency through planning and design partnerships (e.g., Dutch Dialogues for Katrina).

Are all communities eligible to apply for Foundation support?

No, all communities are not eligible to apply for this Request for Proposals. This funding is restricted to communities with Major Disaster Declarations from FEMA due to the 2017 hurricanes and disasters.

How will the Foundation decide what to fund?

The Foundation’s Grantmaking Committee will review all complete applications. Applications will be evaluated based on demonstrated need and potential impact. Please see page 2 of the Request for Proposals for a detailed list of review criteria.

If we receive the award, will we be able to make changes to our scope of work?

APA staff members will work with each awarded applicant to determine the final scope of work. Staff members will also support awardees throughout the project period — and understand that unanticipated changes to the project may need to be made.

What’s the average amount / range awarded for this grant?

Please submit requests for the amount needed to complete the proposed scope of work. Final award amounts will be determined by the selection committee based on the number and types of proposals received. Approximately $53,000 will be awarded through this RFP.

I work for an international nonprofit on the 2017 Hurricane Response Recovery team. I am wondering if the Disaster Recovery Funding would be applicable for our local affiliates in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico to apply for. In other words, can nonprofits that are assisting their communities in the recovery apply for this funding?

Nonprofits are eligible to apply for this funding opportunity. Please note that projects need to incorporate planners, planning strategies, and planning-related activities.

Recovery strategies should also be intended to support resilient communities. Only communities with FEMA Major Disaster Declaration status are eligible.

I see that the APA RFP for Disaster Recovery is due by Monday June 18. However, what is the requirement to hire our planner via professional services RFP to submit this grant?

It is not anticipated that planners will be hired through this Disaster Recovery grant support. CPAT projects leverage volunteer planner expertise and services to support communities.

Additional types of requests are meant to support practicing planners develop recovery planning skills.

What entities are eligible to submit CPAT applications for this program on behalf of a community, or are there specific eligibility restrictions for this program?

CPAT accepts community proposals from local governments as well as local nonprofits and community development corporations. The eligibility requirement is that the entity must be working on behalf of the community. The CPAT program would not accept a proposal from an individual or special interest.

We are submitting a CPAT application. Should we email the application materials to Foundation@planning.org or CPAT@planning.org?

If you are submitting a CPAT application in response to this RFP, please copy CPAT@planning.org on the submission materials.

My community was impacted by a disaster in 2018. Am I eligible to apply?

This funding opportunity is restricted to communities impacted by disasters in 2017. Please refer above to the question: Are all communities eligible to apply for Foundation support?

Do you prefer a narrative format, or charts and graphs?

The format is unlikely to be a factor in consideration — the content and potential impact of the project are far more important.

Does the project have to include APA members, AICP, or can any planner be involved?

The projects can include all planners, whether they are members or not.

What is the ranking system? How will you determine awardees?

Please use the criteria page as your guide (page two of the RFP). The Foundation’s grantmaking committee will evaluate proposals using that same criteria.

What are the reporting requirements for awardees?

Awardees will work with APA staff members to determine reporting deadlines based on the scope of work and type of project. Please review page three of the RFP for a list of reporting outcomes.

This opportunity was made possible by member donations with a match from the Foundation, so it will be important to report back to donors how their contributions made a difference in communities.

Could we add APA funding to another grant or funding source?

Yes, it is allowable to leverage APA’s investment with other funding supports. For example, if you are requesting $5,000 from APA and have identified a local funder to support your proposed CPAT at $5,000, please indicate a total project budget of $10,000 in your application.

Are partial requests allowable?

Yes, partial requests for support are allowable. We anticipate the review process will be competitive and recommend identifying costs of specific portions of your project budget. For example, if you are proposing a complex project for a total budget of $15,000, it would be helpful to understand if there are specific components that could be funded at a lower level.

Is there a way to learn more about completed CPATs?

Reports from all completed CPATs are available on APA’s website at www.planning.org/communityassistance/teams/. The Lyons, Colorado, project is an example of a disaster recovery CPAT.

Do CPATs need to work with APA Chapters?

It is not a requirement that CPAT projects partner with the local chapter, but is strongly recommended. If you need help connecting with the chapter in your state, please contact cpat@planning.org.

APA staff will support CPAT projects by identifying planning experts. Please consider reaching out to local leaders and other partners to build support for the CPAT process.

Do you have any resources for disaster recovery that we could review to help us define our scope of work?

Yes, the Hazards Planning Center has created a special page on our website with our resources. Please visit www.planning.org/resources/disaster/. Please consider using both FEMA data and local data.

Are the CPAT teams selected by the APA Foundation or should they identified as part of the proposal? Can they be local planners from the affected communities?

APA staff members will identify experts to join the CPAT team. CPAT submissions should focus on the scope of work and community impacted by the disaster. If you would like to recommend local planners or partners for consideration, please include that information in your proposal.

What is the typical timeline and budget for a CPAT?

Please review Appendix A. An example budget and a typical timeline are included in the appendix.

Is there a focus on international proposals?

No, all disaster-devasted communities meeting the FEMA major disaster declaration designation are eligible to apply. Please refer above to the question: Are all communities eligible to apply for Foundation support?