Frequently Asked Questions
You can select the agency you would like your donation to fund. Your donation can go towards a specific officer in a specific agency, or to an agency, region, or state. Currently, we have outfitted over 5,000 first responders in 30 states and have worked with over 300 agencies. The easiest way is to donate online or to mail a check. We keep track of the funds for each department. If the department is not listed on our website, please check in with us at 719-345-2442 so we can get that added.
Once all the funding is in, it depends on how many officers are getting their gear and when a presentation can be scheduled. We do our absolute best to get the gear to the recipients as soon as possible. If we are unable to schedule a presentation, we typically mail the gear. Once an officer is measured for the gear, it is about 45-60 days for the gear to be manufactured. Due to supply chain issues, it could be longer.
Each year we strive to get as much of your donation going towards armor as we can. In 2021, we were at $.79 cents per dollar going towards armor and mission related expenses. The $.21 cents per dollar allows us to continue our mission by paying for salaries, traveling to communities across the nation to present the armor, and paying for other various daily operating costs. We continuously evaluate our budget with our staff and our board of directors. If you have additional questions, please feel free to reach out to us.
Yes, your donation is tax deductible. We are a 501 3 (c) not for profit charity. Our tax ID number is 47-4347589.
If you know of a smaller rural agency that could use a hand, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We use our Greatest Need Fund, to help take care of these officers and agencies who need us the most. Your charitable donations help us provide this life-saving protection to agencies who otherwise could not afford this all-day rifle rated armor. Smaller departments in rural areas often have difficulty raising enough funds to provide the armor they need. It not only keeps them safer but helps give them the confidence to protect their communities.
Yes, as we have grown, so has our transparency. Our goal as a non-profit has always been to show how and where we spend YOUR donor dollars. Because of this, we hired an independent auditor in 2018, 2019 and 2020 to give you an unbiased look in our financials. Click here for our most recent audit.
We do our best to invite donors and community members to attend one of our many presentations where the gear is delivered to the officers in need. At these presentations, we honor the officers and match them up with a community member who will “adopt” them and be their support team to bring some positivity to their first responder throughout the year. To be invited, we must have your contact information. Please reach out if you have questions. We send the invites by email first and then by mail if we don’t have an email address.
We are a faith-based non-profit which utilizes supporters who invest financially but also commit to encouraging and praying for the officers and their families. Please ensure you have received permission from the command staff in your agency. You must get approval for the we provide, the use of donated funds for the equipment, support teams, and vest presentations. Once you have approval, we work with you to see how much the fundraising goal will be.
Check in with our team to see what works best for you. Some agencies only need rifle plates and some need the vest carrier and rifle plates. We can customize our efforts to provide exactly what you need. We use Angel Armor Premium NIJ Level IIIA body armor package with front & back plates for NIJ Level III all-day rifle protection. Please note, helmets are temporarily unavailable at this time due to manufacturing delays.
No, unfortunately, we do not have any grant funding available. Our program is based on getting each community to rally around their own first responders.
The short answer is yes. SHIELD616 is a non-profit based in Colorado Springs, CO. We do not currently have the staff or resources to fundraise in every community which needs gear. We provide this much-needed armor through the generosity of members of the communities in which the first responders live, work, and serve. We are here to provide phone support and suggestions to help you in your mission. We can also work with you to provide custom marketing and social media materials to get you going.
This depends on how many first responders your agency is working to protect and which specific gear they need. Please consult with our team to confirm which package will work best for your agency. We have several options. The full armor Police package with Angel Armor vest and plates ranges from $2,100-$2700 per officer, depending on the style of armor that is ordered. The full armor Fire package is $2,200 per firefighter. You can also do, plates and helmets only. Don’t get discouraged if it is a big number. You can do it!
This varies by community. We have done several successful telethons with local TV stations, church funding drives, silent auctions, social media fundraising, golf tournaments, dine and donate nights at restaurants, and other events. Think about what kind of fundraisers would be successful in your community. For individual first responders seeking help, Facebook fundraisers can be a good place to start. You can set-up a Facebook fundraiser page and those proceeds will be credited to you at your agency. Please notify us of all ongoing fundraisers so we can make sure your fund is properly credited at completion.
We ask that our partners refrain from using GoFundMe types of fundraisers. Many platforms like this that allow donations to a non-profit will take your donation and then forward a donation to us. When donations are taken through a third-party, we cannot send a tax-deductible receipt. In addition, many of these types of donations come to us as anonymous and therefore can’t be designated to a specific officer or department.
Yes, SHIELD616 likes to be aware of all fundraisers that are happening. When we get calls or inquiries asking if fundraisers are legitimate, it helps us to know what our supporters are working on. We can also connect people in the same area so they can work together to get funding for their agency.
Try to reach out to other community members who may be able to help with this. There are people who want to help make sure their first responders are safe. Many may not be aware of the funding challenges you face.
Churches, service organizations, police or fire organizations and foundations, businesses, sports teams, and local news stations in your area are great places to start. The Chamber of Commerce in your area may be able to direct you to local companies who are charitable or are looking for a charity to partner with. You community may not realize your agency needs gear. It is helpful to find ways to involve the community in supporting you.
We have created a template donation request letter for agencies to modify and use if needed. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you need this help.
Once we donate the armor, it is property of the agency, and it’s up to the agency on what they will allow. Your agency is responsible for the armor and its expiration dates. While we allow donors to sponsor individual officers, they do so with the understanding the gear is donated to the department or agency that you work for. If your new agency doesn’t have armor, please reach out to us to see how we can help you get better protection.
We are here to be your partner as we all work to protect our protectors. We are committed to this mission, and we know you are too. To assist you in sharing the vision and mission of SHIELD616, please see our website for video, links to media coverage of past events and photos which highlight the power of community and protection for our first responders. If you need any assistance or additional content, including logos, please contact SHIELD616 at 719-345-2442 and we would be happy to assist you.