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SAMHSA Grant Annoucement RFA

Application Information
Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP)

Request for Applications (RFA)

Drug Free Communities Support Program

(Initial Announcement)


Request for Applications (RFA) No. SP-09-002
Posting on January 13, 2009
Receipt date: March 20, 2009
Announcement Type: Initial

Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) No
.: 93.276

Key Dates:

Application Deadline

Applications are due by March 20, 2009

Intergovernmental Review
(E.O. 12372)

Letters from State Single Point of Contact (SPOC) are due no later than 60 days after application deadline

Public Health System Impact Statement
(PHSIS)/SSA Coordination
Applicants must send the PHSIS to appropriate State and local health agencies by application deadline. Comments from Single State Agency are due no later than 60 days after application deadline.

The Executive Office of the President, Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), and the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP) announce the availability of funds for new FY 2009 Drug Free Communities Support Program (DFC) grants.

DFC is a collaborative initiative sponsored by ONDCP in partnership with SAMHSA in order to achieve two major goals:

  • Establish and strengthen collaboration among communities, private nonprofit agencies, and Federal, State, local, and tribal governments to support the efforts of community coalitions to prevent and reduce substance abuse among youth.*

  • Reduce substance abuse among youth and, over time, among adults by addressing the factors in a community that increase the risk of substance abuse and promoting the factors that minimize the risk of substance abuse. (Substances include, but are not limited to, narcotics, depressants, stimulants, hallucinogens, cannabis, inhalants, alcohol, and tobacco, where their use is prohibited by Federal, State, or local law.) Note: DFC projects must focus on multiple drugs of abuse. When the term “drug” or “substance” is used in this funding announcement, it is intended to include all of the above drugs.

*For the purposes of this RFA, “youth” is defined as individuals 18 and younger.

DFC grantees are required to work toward these two goals as the primary focus of their federally funded effort.

The Drug Free Communities Program (DFC) was created by the Drug Free Communities Act, 1997 (Public Law 105-20), reauthorized through the Drug Free Communities Reauthorization Act of 2001 (Public Law 107-82) and reauthorized again through the Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization Act of 2006 (Public Law 109-469). The latest reauthorization extended the program for an additional five years until 2012. This announcement addresses Healthy People 2010 focus area 26 (Substance Abuse).

Since 1998, ONDCP has awarded approximately 1500 DFC grants, with an additional 130 new awards expected in FY 2009. The community sites that have been awarded grants represent a cross-section of communities from every region in the nation and include rural, urban, suburban, and tribal communities. The program has given priority to economically disadvantaged areas or counties in which 20 percent or more of the children are living in a household below the poverty line, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau.

Additional grantee information is available on the DFC Web site:


The Drug Free Communities Act of 1997 (Public Law 105-20) and its subsequent Reauthorization Acts (Public Law 107-82 and Public Law 109-469), authorize initial grant funding or renewal grant funding for coalitions who meet the eligibility criteria outlined below.

All DFC applications will be jointly screened by ONDCP and SAMHSA to determine whether the applicant meets all the DFC program coalition eligibility requirements contained in the eligibility requirement items below. Applications submitted by eligible coalitions that demonstrate that they meet all requirements will then be evaluated, scored, and rated by an independent peer review panel according to the evaluation criteria described in Part V, Application Review Information, of this announcement.

Applications submitted by applicants that do not demonstrate that they meet the eligibility requirements will not advance to the peer review stage.

DFC grant funds are intended to support eligible community-based coalitions.

Please refer to the RFA for specific DFC eligibility requirements and the minimum documentation applicants must provide in Part V, Section G (“Documentation for Eligibility Requirements”) of their application. SAMHSA/ONDCP will not accept any additional materials submitted after the published deadline for this RFA.

Award Information

Approximately $17 million for 130 FY 2009 DFC grants will be awarded through this RFA. DFC grants will be available to eligible coalitions in amounts of up to $125,000 per year over a five-year period, known as a “funding cycle.”  To apply for a DFC grant under this RFA, a coalition must fall into one of the following three categories:

  • A coalition that has never received a DFC grant;

  • A coalition that previously received a DFC grant but experienced a lapse in funding;

  • A coalition that has concluded the first five-year funding cycle and is applying for a second five-year funding cycle.
    First-time applicants (coalitions that have never before received a DFC grant) may request up to $125,000 per year for Years 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 of the funding cycle. If selected to receive a DFC grant, these coalitions will be awarded funds for Year 1 (covering the 12-month period from September 30, 2009 – September 29, 2010). Funds for subsequent years (Years 2, 3, 4 and 5 of the funding cycle) are distributed on an annual basis as non-competing “continuation awards.” Annual continuation awards are contingent upon the availability of DFC funds, the continued ability of the coalition to demonstrate eligibility, grantee progress in meeting grant requirements, and timely submission of the continuation application, as well as all required data and reports.
    Coalitions that have previously received DFC funding but, for whatever reason, experienced a lapse in their five-year funding cycle, may reapply for funding to complete their five-year funding cycle. For example, if “Coalition XYZ” received DFC funding for Years 1 and 2, but did not receive funding for Year 3, Coalition XYZ may apply for funding for Years 3, 4 and 5 under this RFA. Coalition XYZ may not, however, reapply for Year 1 or Year 2 funding. 
    Coalitions that have completed their first five-year funding cycle may request up to $125,000 per year for Years 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 of a second five-year cycle. 
    NOTE: All applicants must clearly state the program award year for which they are applying (e.g., Year 1, Year 2, etc.)  Please indicate in Attachment 16 of the application the status of the coalition and which specific years you have received DFC support in the past. If your coalition had a break in funding, indicate each year you did not receive funding from the Drug-Free Communities program.
    Coalitions that have received 10 years of funding or believe that they may have received 10 years of DFC funding should refer to the Year 11 Policy outlined below in Part III of this RFA under “DFC Eligibility Requirements.” 

Contact Information

For questions regarding all prevention program and coalitions related issues including those pertaining to the completion of an application for this grant program, contact:

Mr. Dan Fletcher
Center for Substance Abuse Prevention
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
1 Choke Cherry Road
Room 4-1085
Rockville, Maryland 20857
(240) 276-1270

For questions on financial, grants management issues and/or other such technical matters pertaining to the completion of an application for this grant program, contact:

Barbara Orlando
Office of Program Services, Division of Grants Management
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
1 Choke Cherry Road
Room 7-1091
Rockville, Maryland 20857
(240) 276-1422

Documents needed to complete a grant application:

Applications that are not submitted on the required application form will be screened out and will not be reviewed.

You must respond to the requirements in the RFA in preparing your application.

PHS 5161-1 (revised July 2000): Includes the face page, budget forms and checklist. Applications that are not submitted on the required application form will be screened out and will not be reviewed.

Additional Materials

For further information on the forms and the application process, see Useful Information for Applicants

Additional materials available on this website include:

Last Update: 3/27/2009