"Now is the Time" Project AWARE Local Educational Agency Grants

Short Title: 
NITT-AWARE-LEA
Modified Announcement

Modified 5/9/14: The following has been added to the 5th paragraph in Section I-1: “The LEA should describe in their application how Project AWARE will address the needs of high-needs schools.”

Request for Applications (RFA) Information
RFA Number: 
SM-14-019
Posted on Grants.gov: 
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Application Due Date: 
Monday, June 16, 2014
Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 
93.243
Description

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Health Services is accepting applications for fiscal year (FY) 2014 “Now is the Time” Project AWARE (Advancing Wellness and Resilience in Education) Local Educational Agency (NITT-AWARE-LEA) grants. The purpose of this program is to assist local educational agencies to begin to support the training of school personnel and other adults who interact with youth in both school settings and communities to detect and respond to mental illness in children and youth, including how to encourage adolescents and their families experiencing these problems to seek treatment. It is required that individuals be trained in Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) or Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA). By implementing this program, SAMHSA expects to achieve an increase in the mental health literacy of adults who interact with school-aged youth and increase awareness of mental health issues among school-aged youth. Read the President’s Plan.

Half of all lifetime cases of mental illness begin by age 14. Despite effective treatments and services, there are long delays — sometimes decades — between first onset of symptoms and when people seek and receive treatment. Furthermore, an untreated mental disorder can lead to a more severe, more difficult to treat illness, and to the possible development of additional co-occurring mental disorders. Three-quarters of mental illnesses appear by the age of 24, yet less than half of children with diagnosable men

In the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2014, Congress appropriated $15 million to SAMHSA for "Mental Health First Aid" and final Conference Report language directed SAMHSA "to focus on a broad public health safety approach when implementing the Mental Health First Aid program that offers training for both school officials and the range of actors in the public sphere that interact with youth." In Project AWARE, SAMHSA will evaluate the impact of MHFA on increasing mental health literacy, improving school climate, preventing school violence, and increasing access to mental health services.

With NITT-AWARE-LEA funding, local educational agencies and their respective communities will train teachers, counselors, other school personnel (e.g., administrators, school bus drivers, cafeteria workers, playground attendants, athletic coaches and trainers), emergency responders (e.g., police, firefighters, emergency services staff), parents, caregivers, and other youth-serving adults in MHFA and YMHFA. MHFA and YMHFA are public education programs that introduce participants to the unique risk factors and symptoms of mental health problems in adolescents, build understanding of the importance of early intervention, and most importantly – teach individuals how to help a youth in crisis or experiencing a mental health or substance use challenge. MHFA and YMHFA use role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to assess a mental health crisis; select interventions and provide initial help; and connect young people to professional, peer, social, and self-help care. Additional information about MHFA and YMHFA can be found in Appendix H of this RFA.

In an effort to maximize funding under this announcement, LEA applicants should demonstrate how they will build on, enhance, and not duplicate current activities should they receive funding under SAMHSA’s "Now is the Time" Project AWARE State Educational Agency grant. The LEA should describe in their application how Project AWARE will address the needs of high-needs schools.

NITT-AWARE-LEA grants are authorized under Section 520A of the Public Health Service Act, as amended. This announcement addresses Healthy People 2020 Mental Health and Mental Disorders Topic Area HP 2020-MHMD.

Eligibility

Eligible applicants are Local Educational Agencies or consortia of LEAs, as defined by section 9101 (41) of the ESEA. Applicants for this announcement are also required to apply for the Department of Educations’ LEA School Climate Transformation grants or your application will be screened out. The grant announcement number and hyperlink to the RFA will be posted on the SAMHSA website when it is available.

The purpose of this program is to assist Local Educational Agencies to begin to support the training of school personnel and other adults who interact with youth in both school settings and local communities to detect and respond to mental illness in school-aged youth, including how to encourage adolescents and their families experiencing these problems to seek treatment. These individuals will be trained in Mental Health First Aid or Youth Mental Health First Aid.

Therefore, eligibility is being limited to LEAs since these individuals have substantial involvement and access to children and youth in both school settings and local communities and can begin to immediately implement the goals and objectives of this program.

Award Information
Funding Mechanism: 
Grant
Anticipated Total Available Funding: 
$9,419,000
Anticipated Number of Awards: 
Up to 100
Anticipated Award Amount: 
Up to $50,000 per year
Length of Project: 
Up to 2 years
Cost Sharing/Match Required?: 
No

The proposed budget cannot exceed $50,000 in total costs (direct and indirect) in any year of the proposed project. Annual continuation awards will depend on the availability of funds, grantee progress in meeting project goals and objectives, timely submission of required data and reports, and compliance with all terms and conditions of award.

The NITT-AWARE-LEA awards will be made as grants.

Contact Information
Program Issues

Michelle Bechard
Center for Mental Health Services
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
1 Choke Cherry Road
Room 6-1097
Rockville MD 20857
240-276-1872
LEA_AWARE@samhsa.hhs.gov

Grants Management and Budget Issues

Gwendolyn Simpson
Office of Financial Resources, Division of Grants Management
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
1 Choke Cherry Road
Room 7-1091
Rockville, Maryland 20857
(240) 276-1408
gwendolyn.simpson@samhsa.hhs.gov

Application Materials

You must respond to the requirements in both the RFA PART I and PART II when preparing your application.

Useful Information for Applicants

Last Updated: 12/02/2014