Harm Reduction Grant Fund HB 22-1326 Expansion - RFA #41043


The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment's (CDPHE) Overdose Prevention Unit is pleased to announce the availability of funds to develop and/or expand harm reduction programs to prevent overdose deaths,  reduce health risks associated with drug use, and decrease substance use related engagement in the criminal justice system, referred to here as the criminal legal system.

During the 2019 legislative session, SB19-008: Substance Use Disorder in the Criminal Justice System passed establishing a Harm Reduction Grant Program within CDPHE. The goal and purpose of the Harm Reduction Grant Program is to fund and support local communities to rethink and expand opportunities to address drug use using a public health approach, rather than through the criminal legal system.The 2022 passage of HB 22-1326 Fentanyl Accountability and Prevention allocated additional funding for a broadened list of eligible entities and expanded allowable uses of the fund. Eligible entities may apply on their own or submit proposals on behalf of a group of eligible entities to foster community collaboration and collective impact. HB 22-1326 removed the requirement that applicants demonstrate a relationship between law enforcement, local public health agencies, and community-based organizations. 

Overdose deaths are disproportionately affecting people of color and communities already experiencing higher rates of criminalization and discrimination based on factors including  race, gender, and socioeconomic status. Eligible organizations must demonstrate the ability to engage the communities using culturally responsive prevention strategies and a health equity lens with specific focus on underserved populations and regions. CDPHE acknowledges that generations-long social, economic, and environmental inequities result in adverse health outcomes. They affect communities differently and have a greater influence on health outcomes than either individual choices or one’s ability to access health care. Reducing health disparities through policies, practices and organizational systems can help improve opportunities for all Coloradans.

Eligible organizations must also demonstrate an understanding of harm reduction and be willing to implement innovative strategies utilizing a harm reduction approach. The grant program will be funded through June 2026, at which point it will be evaluated by the state for reauthorization. Organizations may apply for up to $330,000/year.

Who Should Apply:

Eligible organizations must be based in Colorado and have the capacity to rethink and expand opportunities to address drug use using a harm reduction and public health approach, rather than the criminal legal system model. Only the following entities will be considered for funding under this RFA:

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An eligible entity may submit a proposal on behalf of a group of eligible entities, and divide grant funds accordingly to foster community collaboration and collective impact. The applying entity will serve as the lead contractor and will subcontract with the appropriate entities participating in the work.

Eligible organizations must demonstrate their readiness to coordinate strategies that advance the initiatives of this application. This may include demonstrating experience and/or expertise in the following: harm reduction, evidence-based behavioral health strategies, building collaborative relationships, community engagement, health equity work, and overdose prevention. 

NOTE:  Eligible organizations proposing development of a syringe service program must meet the requirements of Colorado Revised Statute 25-1-520. Entities exempt from seeking Board of Health Approval are nonprofit organizations with experience operating a syringe service program or a health facility licensed or certified by the CDPHE. Organizations may expand upon an existing syringe service program to ensure experience in operating such a program. If an organization does not meet these criteria, they must demonstrate support from the Board of Health to ensure proposed activities are achievable, per section 25-1-520(2.5), C.R.S. This support can be demonstrated through an attached letter of support from the Board of Health or county commissioners if they serve in place of a Board of Health.

Priority points: If the above requirements are met, an additional 5 points will be awarded for applications proposing the development of a syringe service program if one does not currently exist in their county.


Project Activities:

Permissible uses of funding provided pursuant to this grant program include general operating expenses and direct and indirect project costs associated with activities including, but not limited to:

  • Trainings relevant to the field of harm reduction;

  • Purchasing and providing sterile equipment, fentanyl test strips, and syringe disposal equipment;

  • Providing outreach and direct services to persons who have come into contact with or who are at risk of coming into contact with the criminal legal system;

  • Facilitating evidence based public education and outreach, training,and technical assistance;

  • Auricular acudetox training and services;

  • Development of a public awareness and/or education campaign relevant to the field of harm reduction;

  • Local conventions for the purpose of developing community-based approaches for overdose prevention, early intervention, and harm reduction services;

  • Developing or expanding existing, community-based organizations that provide overdose prevention, early intervention, or harm reduction services;

  • Evidence based research concerning best or promising practices in overdose prevention, early intervention, harm reduction, and medication-assisted treatment protocols;

  • Developing strategies for serving populations who are at higher risk of overdose and live in underserved areas;

Unallowable expenses –for profit agencies are ineligible for these funds. Applicants must be willing to provide non-coercive services to individuals across the spectrum of drug use including individuals who actively use drugs and those who self-identify as being in recovery.

Applications due 1/31/2023 by 5 p.m. MST. Submit by email to Sam.bourdon@state.co.us.

Required Documents:


Download the application packet here

Questions and Answers

Applicants may submit written questions to sam.bourdon@state.co.us

The deadline for applicants to submit written inquiries is 5 p.m., January 13, 2023. No questions will be accepted after this date/time. 
Answers to written inquiries and any changes to the RFA published here by 5pm on the following dates:

Dec 9, 2022

Dec 23, 2022

Jan 9, 2023

Jan 23, 2023


Additional Guidance and Resources

Fentanyl Accountability And Prevention

Grant Writing Resources

National Harm Reduction TA Center -
Navigating the Harm Reduction Landscape: A Guide for State, Federal, and Private Funding

Grants Management 101 Online Toolkit

Financial Risk Assessment Questionnaire FAQ


RFA Timeline
Application Timeline Time (MDT) Date
Application Submission Deadline 5 p.m. 1/31/2023
Evaluation Period N/A 2/1/23 - 02/24/23
Estimated Notification of Award 5 p.m. 3/3/23
Contract Drafting   3/4/23 - 4/30/2023
Estimate Contract Effective Date   5/01/23