Security Grants

Whether you're a first-time or returning grant applicant, this page offers valuable resources and tools for nonprofit organizations of all sizes to apply for and implement Federal and NJ State nonprofit security grants.


The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS)/Federal Emergency Agency (FEMA) Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP) and the New Jersey NSGP are designed to help nonprofit organizations prevent, prepare for, and protect against potential attacks.

To learn how your organization can apply for a security grant, check out the resources below or email

This page is based on information that may change. Applicants are urged to use official government websites for the latest and best information on federal and state NSGP grants.

The information herein reflects best efforts by Federation to answer to common questions regarding security grants. Grant applicants are urged to revisit this page often as new information is posted regularly.

Applicants should also consult their own legal counsel, board of directors, security professionals, law enforcement, or other advisers during the preparation of their applications.

The following is provided for educational and informational purposes only, without representation, guarantee, or warranty of any kind. Jewish Federation in the Heart of New Jersey is not responsible for any injury, loss, or damages to persons or property arising from the use or misuse of this information.



The Federal Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP) is made available through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security – Federal Emergency Management Agency (DHS-FEMA).

The NSGP is a competitive grant that provides funding for physical and cybersecurity enhancements and other security-related activities to nonprofit organizations that are at high risk of a terrorist or other extremist attack. The NSGP also seeks to integrate the preparedness activities of nonprofit organizations with broader state and local preparedness efforts.

The New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (NJOHSP) is the State Administrative Agency (SAA) for the program. Nonprofit organizations must apply to NJOHSP, which then submits a final application package to FEMA on behalf of all nonprofit sub-applicants.

As the SAA, NJOHSP has the final preference on aspects of your submission. Organizations should follow dates and guidance from NJOHSP when it comes to submission requirements, submission cycle, allowable costs, and documentation.

The timeline for the NSGP fluctuates each year as it is dependent on the federal appropriations process. It is therefore recommended that nonprofit organizations planning to apply get started early, as there are several steps that can be completed prior to each application period.

FFY2023 Application Period Closed March 31, 2023 at 11:59 PM

Sub-grantee award recipients received notification August 2023

Basic FAQs

Who is eligible?

501 (c)(3) nonprofit organizations that are determined to be at high risk of attack due to their ideology, beliefs, or mission.

How much funding is available?

FFY2023, Congress appropriated $305 million for Urban Areas and Non-Urban Areas, split evenly between the two. Organizations are able to apply for up to $150,000 per location.

When will organizations be able to apply?

The FFY2023 Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program was released on February 27, 2023. Submission deadlines are determined by each State Administrative Agency. We expect New Jersey's application cycle to open on March 1, 2023, and close on March 31, 2023, and sub-grantee awards are anticipated to be announced in late summer/early fall.

How does an organization apply?

You will need to access the NJOHSP submission portal, fill out questions and upload your mission statement, Investment Justification (IJ), Vulnerability Risk Assessment (VRA), and other supporting documents.

Note: For the federal NSGP, organizations in Monmouth and Greater Middlesex counties must APPLY as NSGP-UA in the Jersey City/Newark urban area.

How are funds disbursed?

This is a reimbursement grant. If your organization is awarded a grant, you will have to advance funds for items and services purchased and submit proof of installation or execution and payment in order to be reimbursed.

What are allowable costs?

Allowable costs are focused on security-related activities. Funding can be used for contracted security personnel, as well as security-related planning, training, exercises, and the acquisition and installation of cybersecurity enhancements and security equipment on property owned or leased by the nonprofit organization at the time of application.

Examples include:

  • Equipment: Those items listed in the Authorized Equipment List as allowable under the NSGP.
  • Contracted Security Personnel: Contracted security professionals as allowable under the NSGP.
  • Planning: Activities related to the development of plans such as: Security Risk Management Plans; Continuity of Operations Plans; and Response Plans.
  • Training: Security training for employees or members of the organization.
  • Response exercises: All exercises must be pre-approved by the NJOHSP Training Bureau and Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP)-compliant. Please contact the NJOHSP Training Bureau for more information.

Are there restrictions on what can be purchased?

Yes. Here are some examples of restrictions on expenditures:

  • Reimbursement of pre-award grant and security expenses
  • License plate readers
  • Weapons and/or weapons training
  • Facial recognition software
  • General expenses, salaries, overtime
  • Knox boxes
  • Proof-of-concept initiatives/studies
  • Costs associated with permits
  • Architectural fees related to projects
  • Equipment produced by Huawei Technologies Company or ZTE Corporation, Hytera Communications Corporation, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Company, or Dahua Technology Company (or any subsidiary or affiliate of such entities).
    • Examples of the types of products covered by this prohibition include phones, internet, video surveillance, and cloud servers when produced, provided, or used by an entity owned or controlled by, or otherwise connected to, the People’s Republic of China. 

Can more than one nonprofit apply if they share a building?

No, only one nonprofit can apply per building/facility/physical structure/address. Multiple requests for federal assistance will all be deemed ineligible.

Can an organization apply for multiple locations/buildings?

Organizations may apply for a single location or multiple locations for the same 501 (c)(3) nonprofit.

Single Location

A nonprofit with one site may apply for up to $150,000 for that site.

Single Location with Multiple Facilities

A nonprofit with one site and multiple facilities at one physical address may apply for up to $150,000 for that site. Only one VRA and IJ are required but both the VRA and IJ must address the multiple facilities and their unique needs.

Multiple Locations

Nonprofits with multiple sites (multiple locations/physical addresses) may choose to apply for additional sites at up to $150,000 per site for a maximum of three sites, not to exceed $450,000. A VRA and IJ are required for each site.

What is the process for reviewing and evaluating an application?

  1. Applications will be scored by NJOHSP.
  2. NJOHSP will submit a list of IJs with all scores to FEMA.
  3. FEMA will review the applications.
    • In the final scoring process, organizations that are at risk due to their ideology, beliefs, or mission are prioritized.
    • Additionally, organizations that have never received federal NSGP funding and/or that are located in an underrepresented/underserved community based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) Social Vulnerability Index receive additional points applied by FEMA in the scoring process.
  4. Based on the process described above, FEMA will make funding recommendations to the Secretary of Homeland Security.
  5. All final funding determinations will be made by the Secretary of Homeland Security, who retains the discretion to consider other factors and information in addition to FEMA’s funding recommendations.

How are IJs scored?

The reviewers score IJs using the NSGP Scoring Matrix. Before you submit your grant package, it is good practice to review your IJ using the scoring matrix to have the best chance to obtain the maximum number of points.

Bonus points may be given for:

  • First-time grantee bonus: Applicants that have not received NSGP funding in the past will receive an additional fifteen (15) bonus points to their total state application score.
  • Mission-based bonus: To calculate an application's final score, the sum of the applicant's state score and the average of the two federal reviewers' scores will be multiplied by a factor of three (3) for nonprofit groups that are at a high risk of terrorist attacks due to their ideology, beliefs or mission, by a factor of two (2) for medical and educational institutions, and by a factor of one (1) for all others.
  • Underserved communities: Nonprofit organizations located within an underserved community will have up to fifteen (15) points added to their project review score. Organizations located in an area with a high (0.69 – 0.79) or very high (0.8 – 1) CDC Social Vulnerability Index (SVI) score will have 10 or 15 bonus points added to final scores, respectively. Points will be assigned by FEMA.

Process for creating the final score:

  1. State score (max 40) + Federal score (max 40) = IJ score
  2. Mission-based Multipliers of 3, 2, or 1 applied to IJ score
  3. First-time grantee bonus applied (15 points) 
  4. Underserved community bonus applied (0 or 10 or 15 points)

What is the period of performance?

The period of performance is the length of time that subrecipients have to implement their project(s), accomplish all goals, and expend all grant funding. The period of performance for the federal NSGP is 36 months.

Projected Period of Performance Start Date: 09/01/2023
Projected Period of Performance End Date: 08/31/2026 

Advanced FAQs

What is a Unique Entity ID (UEI) and how do I receive one?

A Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) is a 12-character alphanumeric identifier assigned to an entity by the System for Award Management, As of April 4, 2022, Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) numbers are no longer valid and all organizations applying for the federal NSGP grant MUST have a UEI number. Obtaining a UEI does not cost anything; it is free of charge.

For the FFY2024 NSGP, nonprofit organizations are required to have a UEI issued at the time of application but MUST have a valid UEI to be eligible to receive funding. 

Note: If you receive an award but are ineligible to receive the funds you are no longer considered a first-time awardee and may not receive bonus points for future grant cycles.

How do I obtain a UEI for my organization?

Determine whether your organization was previously assigned a DUNS number when applying for federal assistance.

  • If your organization was previously assigned a DUNS Number, it has been replaced by a new UEI value. Login to to check your new UEl.
  • If your organization has not previously applied for federal assistance, you will automatically be assigned a UEl when registering on

Watch this video to learn how to get a Unique Entity ID without needing to complete an entity registration on

What is the difference between NSGP-UA and NSGP-S?

NSGP-UA (Urban Area) provides funding to nonprofit organizations located within an Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI)-designated high-risk urban area. NSGP-S (State) provides funding for nonprofit organizations located outside of UASI-designated high-risk urban areas.

For the federal NSGP, organizations in Monmouth and Greater Middlesex counties must APPLY as NSGP-UA in the Jersey City/Newark urban area.

What is a Vulnerability Risk Assessment (VRA)?

A Vulnerability Risk Assessment (VRA) is an evaluation that identifies threats and hazards based on previous incidents and other intelligence sources. The assessment will list observations about your vulnerabilities related to planning, training, exercises, contracted security personnel, cybersecurity, and security equipment investments to mitigate your vulnerabilities and help make your facilities more secure. 

For the federal NSGP, a VRA must be conducted within 2-3 years of an organization's grant submission date. If substantial changes have been made to your facility since your last VRA or if you are requesting items not listed in your VRA, your organization will need to have your VRA updated or conduct a new assessment.

For more information, visit our security assessments page.

How can an organization schedule a VRA?

To schedule a VRA:

Note: Organizations are also allowed to submit self-assessments. Best practice is to have a security or law enforcement professional review all self-assessments. Please see below for a list of self-assessment tools.

What forms do I complete to request a VRA?

Middlesex County Pre-Assessment Form 

Monmouth County use NJOHSP/NJSP Facility Self-Assessment Form

Please see below for a list of assessment tools. Send completed forms here

What is the Investment Justification (IJ)?

The Investment Justification (IJ) is a fillable template provided and required by FEMA that asks nonprofits to describe the organization, risks/threats to the organization, and proposed projects/activities to mitigate security deficiencies (as identified in the vulnerability risk assessment) utilizing NSGP funding.

The IJ is subject to change each fiscal year, and prior years’ templates will not be accepted. Only use the form for the current fiscal year.

Note: This is the only document from the grant package that is forwarded by NJOHSP to DHS/FEMA.

Click here for the current IJ.

What makes a strong IJ?

There are a number of things that constitute a strong IJ. Some of the most important elements include:

  • Clearly identified risks, including threats, vulnerabilities, and consequences.
  • Describe any threats (e.g., verbal threats, vandalization) made against the organization that prove you are at a high risk of a terrorist or other extremist attack.
  • Describe current events with specific attention to incidents impacting organizations that have been targeted due to a similar mission, belief, or ideology.
    • The applicant should make the connection that they are at risk for the same reasons.
    • Local crimes such as burglary, theft, or vandalism without a terrorism, extremism, or hate-related nexus may provide context justification for NSGP funding.
  • Provide information on the current threat environment.
  • Description of findings from a vulnerability assessment.
  • Describe any incidents that have occurred at your facility including description, dates, etc.
  • A brief description of any supporting documentation (such as police reports or photographs) that is submitted as part of the application, if applicable.
  • Explanation of how the investments proposed will mitigate or address the vulnerabilities identified in the submitted vulnerability assessment.
  • All proposed activities are allowable costs per the current NSGP funding notice.
  • Realistic milestones that consider the Environmental Planning and Historic Preservation (EHP) review process.
  • Description of the project manager(s) and level of experience.

For more information, read the IJ Checklist.

Does the grant allow contract security personnel?

Contracted security personnel are allowed under the grant program as described in the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) and the accompanying appendix C in the Preparedness Grants Manual

Things to note:

  • The nonprofit organization may not use more than 50% of its award to pay for security personnel.
    • Please direct any questions about the personnel cap to NJOHSP.
  • The nonprofit organization must be able to sustain this capability in future years without NSGP funding, and a sustainment plan will be required as part of the closeout package for any award funding this capability. 
  • Contracted security costs described in the IJ should include the hourly/daily rate, the number of personnel, and anticipated number of hours/days the personnel will work over the course of the period of performance. 
  • NSGP funds may not be used to purchase equipment for contracted security. 
  • This funding is exclusively for the hiring of security personnel. It may not be used to supplant expenses for current security personnel but may be used to supplement additional security personnel needs based on identified risk.

Are Management and Administration (M&A) costs included in grant?

The NSGP will cover activities directly related to the management and administration (M&A) of the award, such as meeting the financial management and monitoring requirements of the grant. 

To be considered for reimbursement, M&A costs must be included in the Target Hardening section of your Investment Justification and limited to up to 5% of the total award. M&A may not be used for operational costs such as vendor or contractor project management.

Examples of M&A include:

  • Preparing and submitting required programmatic and financial reports.
  • Establishing and/or maintaining equipment inventory.
  • Documenting operational and equipment expenditures for financial accounting purposes.
  • Responding to official informational requests from state and federal oversight authorities. 

It is good practice to check the references of those offering to administer your grant.

Note: NJ regulations require three bids for any project over $1000, including M&A contractors.

Does the grant include cybersecurity?

Yes. Here are examples of some expenditures:

  • SaaS (Software as a service)
  • Remote authentication
  • Encryption software for protecting stored data files or email messages
  • Malware/anti-virus protection
  • Firewalls
  • Intrusion detection and prevention

See the Authorized Equipment List for a full list of allowable costs.

Note: Subscription fees can only cover the period of performance, which is 3 years.

Any item included in your facility hardening plan must have a parallel vulnerability in your Vulnerability Risk Assessment (VRA) – including cybersecurity measures.

  • Jewish Federation’s Director of Security Initiatives, Amy Keller, reviews tips and tricks for organizations interested in applying for the FFY2022 Nonprofit Security Grant Program.




Upcoming Webinars (check back often)


Please note that depending on the timing of a Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 appropriations bill, final FY 2024 information on the NSGP may not be available at the time of these webinars.

Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024, 2PM 

Friday, Feb. 15, 2024, 1PM

Thursday, Feb. 22, 3PM

Thursday, Feb. 29, 1PM

Friday, March 8, 2PM

Thursday, March 14, 4PM

Friday, March 22, 2PM

Webinars below are for FFY2023

SCN - Deep Dive, The NSGP Application, Jan. 11, 2PM LINK
SCN - Threats & Risks Under the NSGP, Feb. 8, 2PM LINK

SCN - FEMA Guidelines and Q&A, Mar. 14, 2PM LINK

Past Webinars

Resource Archive





The New Jersey Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NJ NSGP) is a State-run program that provides funding to eligible 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations across New Jersey at the greatest risk of terrorist attacks.

The program consists of two funding opportunities:

  • Security Personnel (NJ NSGP-SP): This program is limited to the hiring of federal, state, county, or municipal active law enforcement officers or security officers for the applicant’s facility.
  • Target Hardening Equipment (NJ NSGP-THE): This program is limited to the purchase and installation of security equipment on property owned or leased by the nonprofit organization. 

The state fiscal year 2024 NJ NSGP application open enrollment period is closed.

Awards will be announced January, 2024. 

Guidance from Jewish Federation Security Initiatives re: 2025 NJ NSGP Application Coming Soon.