2019 FL BRACE Funding Opportunity

Are you taking steps to plan for and protect against climate-related health risks in your community?

Are you developing response strategies that leverage public health resources and community connections to help people take necessary precautions and make more effective decisions?

The Florida Building Resilience Against Climate Effects (FL BRACE) Program is soliciting proposals from county health departments and community partners to create an evaluation plan of climate and weather-related adaptations, interventions, or other evidence-based projects. Proposals are due February 15, 2019. FL BRACE offers support to public health officials and local partners seeking to improve community's resilience. The BRACE framework, developed by the CDC, is a five-step process.

infographicThis funding opportunity specifically addresses the fifth step in the BRACE Framework--evaluating the impact of adaptation strategies and interventions. This step is designed to determine the value of information attained and the impacts of the activities undertaken. We are looking for health practitioners to prioritize evaluation as a necessary step in the adaptation process and encourage the use of these insights to inform your adaptation efforts.

If you are considering a new local adaptation project, or you would like to enhance an existing project, this funding opportunity may be for you. Note: this grant opportunity is only designed to encourage and fund the development of an evaluation plan tied to a new or existing adaptation project. Future funds may be available for implementation of the plan (i.e., conducting the evaluation and reporting on findings including data results, key points, lessons learned and recommendations).

Read the full details about this funding opportunity to see if your work is a good fit. If you would like to learn more about the evaluation planning process or Florida BRACE, please watch the webinar "An Introduction to Evaluation" below.

1 Liang, Song, Kristina Kintziger, Phyllis Reaves, and Sadie J. Ryan. "Climate Change Impacts on Human Health." In Florida's Climate: Changes, Variations, & Impacts, 125-52. Gainesville, FL: Florida Climate Institute, 2017.

Webinar: An Introduction to Evaluation

Evaluation is an important component of any program's development, but it is often an afterthought or neglected when an agency has many other pressing priorities. But the systematic collection of information about activities, characteristics, and outcomes of programs can be used to make judgements about the program, improve program effectiveness, and/or inform decisions about future program development.

Looking at evaluation specifically through the lens of public health, the CDC defines it as "a systematic way to improve and account for public health actions by involving procedures that are useful, feasible, ethical, and accurate." In an effort to focus on building the capacity of public health departments and to get health officials and community partners thinking about evaluation before The 45-minute presentation,co-presented by Drs. Tisha Holmes and Ava Holt, covers the basics of evaluation, the evaluation life cycle, and evaluation components using a real-world example. In addition to providing a good primer on evaluation, the evaluation webinar was developed to support the funding opportunity announcement presently in circulation to public health departments and community partners. The evaluation webinar, originally hosted on January 17, 2018, was recorded and can be viewed above or on YouTube at https://youtu.be/70frQjfiix0.

Proposal Format and Submission

Project proposals should follow the template provided on page 4 of the Funding Opportunity Announcement.

Proposal applications should be submitted via email no later than 5:00 pm (EST) on Wednesday, February 15, 2019. See the Funding Opportunity Announcement for detals.

Additional Resources

Below are links to resources that can inform your evaluation efforts and any submissions to the current Funding Opportunity.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Please see below for FAQs submitted to date. Please feel free to contact Tracy Ippolito via email to tippolito@fsu.edu no later than February 7 if you have any questions or need clarification about items requested in this proposal template. All questions submitted and answers provided will be posted online, so be sure to check back to this web page often.

Who is eligible to apply for this funding opportunity?

Q: Do I need experience evaluating projects to apply for this grant?
A: No! The FL BRACE team can work with you to execute the project.

Q: I do not have an in-house evaluator/evaluation team. Can I still apply for this grant?
A: Yes. The FL BRACE team can work with you and your staff to execute the project.

Q: I am part of a local non-profit group. Can we apply for this grant?
A: Yes. Community organizations are eligible to apply for this grant and serve as project lead so long as they partner with their local county health department. A brief letter of support from the county health department director or administrator describing capacity, willingness to complete the project and/or support for project is required for community partner organizations applying for these funds.

Q: Are prior BRACE grant recipients eligible to apply?
A: Yes.

Types of Interventions/Adaptations for this Funding Opportunity

Q: Should the health intervention/adaptation be directly linked to weather or climate?
A: The intervention/adaptation can be directly (e.g., extreme heat) or indirectly (e.g., hurricantes, infectious disease) related to weather or climate.

Q: Can the proposed evaluation plan be for a project that is not yet funded? Perhaps something we are simply considering doing but have not yet begun?
A: Yes. Ideally, development of an evaluation plan SHOULD take place during the planning stages. So, this funding opportunity will support the development of an plan for assessing the effectiveness of an intervention or adaptation activity being considered. That said, an intervention or adaptation activity already taking place in your community is also eligible, so long as the evaluation activities detailed in your plan have not already taken place.

Other/General Questions About the Funding Opportunity

Q: Are there examples of previously funded projects?
A: This is the first grant opportunity for an evaluation-focused project, so there are no examples of previously-funded projects. However, the webinar (see above) provides examples of how an evaluation plan is developed.

Q: I do a lot of things in my program -- send emails, hold trainings, meet with partners. Could all of those count as interventions? How do I select one to take through this process?
A: Interventions can range in their scope and impact, but those evaluated should contribute to a larger project / program / policy that helps your department's ability to prepare for and respond to climate related hazards. Selecting an intervention project / program / policy will depend on the outcomes/impacts you are interested in learning about and the capacity of your department to conduct the evaluation. These interventions can be evaluated individually or collectively.

Q: Could you discuss the criteria for scoring the proposals for the funding opportunity?
A: The criteria used to assess the applications will include the clarity of goals, objectives and methods, potential impact of the proposed evaluation, and the experience of the project adminstrators.

Q: What special considerations would be primary for an intended adaptation vs an implemented intervention?
A: Since this is a planning grant the stage that the project is in does not necessarily matter, but what is important is crafting out a clear proposal where you lay out an approach to developing an evaluation plan for defined activities/outcomes.

Webinar and General Evaluation Questions

Q: Who is the webinar for?
Anyone who has ever needed to prove the efficacy of their programming!

Q: Why should I attend/watch the webinar?
A: The quality of this webinar is in part a result of the questions from attendees at the end of the presentation. When you and you colleagues return to this content it might just be one of those questions and answers at the end that clarifies something essential for other practitioners (or you)! Furthermore, this webinar is designed to advance the evaluation skills of beginner and intermediate level evaluators (aka anyone who does any amount of evaluation as part of their job).

Q: What does the webinar cover?
This webinar will cover basic evaluation concepts, an in-depth dive into the planning phase of evaluation, as well as a practical application of that planning phase using a climate and health intervention.

Q: If I want to evaluate a program that's not yet developed, at what point should I start evaluation planning?
Planning can take place at any stage of the project's life cycle. Ideally, you want to start planning for what you want to evaluate during the first stages of formulating a project / program / policy.

Q: You all have done a great job on this presentation but I'm feel overwhelmed after watching this. How much time does all this additional planning add to a project, and how do I convince leadership that it's worth it?
Depending on the type of evaluation, planning can take weeks to months to complete. This upfront investment can be beneficial in avoiding the pitfalls of "too little too late" evaluation and identify how to improve monitor the project/program/policy during all stages of the life cyle. Evaluation planning can generate significant benefits for your leadership in terms of cost-savings, efficient use of department resources and generation evidence based data on the effectiveness of interventions/programs/policies.