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American Red Cross: Home Fire Campaign Grant Proposal

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Every day, seven people die from home fires in the United States, most impacting children and the elderly. Studies show that having working smoke alarms in the home cuts the risk of dying in a fire by half and having an escape plan reduces that risk even further. The American Red Cross, through its Home Fire Campaign initiative, has made a proven impact in reducing those rates and creating safer and more resilient communities.

The goal of this five-year project, begun in 2014, is to reduce fire-related deaths and injuries by 25 percent through the provision of free smoke alarm installations and home fire safety education. In the four years after the program’s start, smoke alarms installed at Home Fire Campaign events have resulted in over 400 documented lives saved in the United States, and 11 lives saved just in Indiana.

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Over the course of one year, we will increase the number of households made safer by 25 percent through targeted outreach to communities with the highest risk of fire-related deaths and injuries. This will be accomplished through completion of key informant interviews with community leaders in four high-risk zip codes in order to gain insight into the communities we serve and how best to engage those communities. We will use the information gathered to increase awareness of our services and promote upcoming Home Fire Campaign events through door-to-door canvassing, presentations to key groups, and presence at community events. This research and outreach will culminate in one major canvassing event in each of the targeted zip codes, with a total goal of installing 1,000 smoke alarms, reaching 400 individuals, and engaging a minimum of 100 volunteers recruited from the target communities.

We will achieve these objectives through the training of volunteers and mobilization of supplies, which are needed to complete research, interview community leaders, participate in community outreach, install smoke alarms, and educate residents on home fire safety. We will host training classes for volunteers, recruit interns for research and planning support, and engage community partners and logistics volunteers to develop plans for our major canvassing events.

Through the Home Fire Campaign, the American Red Cross will build safer communities not only by providing free smoke alarm installations and home fire safety education, but also by engaging the community in outreach to their neighbors and volunteer work in their neighborhoods. In sharing life-saving safety information with their family, neighbors, and community, residents themselves increase the impact of the program and decrease the risk of injury or death from home fires.

We will execute one major canvassing event in each of the targeted zip codes, with a total goal of installing 1,000 smoke alarms, reaching 400 individuals, and engaging a minimum of 100 volunteers recruited from the target communities.


Research community leaders, partners, organizations, etc. to reach out to gain insight into the target community (to identify key partners, community events, opportunities for recruitment and outreach prior to the event); complete this outreach.

Set event date and reserve meeting location

Recruit volunteers from corporate partners, community groups, existing Red Cross volunteers, etc. for pre-canvassing, planning, day-of logistics and support, and canvassing Submit request for necessary supplies at least two months in advance Promote event at community events; with community partners; and closer to the event, with the media Pre-canvass the community by going door-to-door with door hangers and by placing yard signs near street corners Prepare supplies for event and create route maps for each team Order lunch for the day of the event Fill table of organization and create work assignments for support staff and volunteers for the day of the event Coordinate logistics with partner organizations participating the day of the event Execute event Report data from the event Send thank you cards or emails to each of the volunteers


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