The primary goal of the VFD Assistance Programs is to enhance the emergency response capabilities of volunteer and combination fire departments with 20 or fewer paid members.


    Texas A&M Forest Service is committed to helping fire departments obtain critically needed equipment, protective gear, emergency vehicles, training and other resources to protect the public and emergency personnel from fire and related hazards. 


    We encourage VFDs to consider each program and apply for those which you are eligible.


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    The Rural VFD Assistance Program is a cost-share program funded by the Texas State Legislature. It provides funding to rural VFDs for the acquisition of firefighting vehicles, fire and rescue equipment, protective clothing, dry-hydrants, computer systems and firefighter training. The Rural VFD Insurance Program provides reimbursement grants for Texas firefighters to obtain workers compensation, death and disability insurance from private insurance companies. Each year more than 400 fire departments and 11,000 firefighters apply for the grant offering.

    DoD Firefighter Property Program (FFP)
     Helping Hands
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    The U.S. Department of Defense Firefighter Property Program provides excess DoD military property to emergency service providers. Ownership of the equipment is passed from the federal government to the recipient. Statewide enrollment is now open. The Helping Hands Program allows the donation of used equipment while providing liability relief to the donor. The program routinely receives donations in the way of structural gear, fire hoses, nozzles, rescue tools, ladders, ventilation fans and other items that are essential to the operation of a fire department.
    VFD Motor Vehicle Self Insurance Program
    (Risk Pool)
     Fire Safe
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    Through the VFD Motor Vehicle Self Insurance Program TFS provides vehicle liability insurance at a greatly reduced cost. The Firesafe Program has processed more than $1.05 million in protective clothing and gear. The merchandise is purchased in bulk in order to pass along savings to rural and small community fire departments. Eligible fire departments get quality wildland and structural protective clothing at a savings of 30 to 40 percent.