Every community has its own unique personality, its own rhythm and vibrancy, its own unique challenges. The injury patterns and problems are also unique to each community. However, by determining which ones most impact your community, and designing injury prevention programs to address them, you can make a difference.
Your community may already have individuals, groups, and organizations who have committed their time and resources to make your community safer. Working together, in partnership, communities can reduce disabling injuries and save lives. It all starts with a commitment to making safety a priority for your community. Let Safe Communities America help you become a Safe Community.
Becoming a safe community is a collaborative and inclusive process, but each community decides their approach. We are happy to help throughout your application process, so please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
with any questions. We can even get you in touch with one of our 23 designated Safe Communities to provide additional support.
The application process can take anywhere from 9-12 months to complete. Communities may need to build or enhance coalitions around injury prevention and safety promotion.
There are TWO designations available:
- National Designation - administered by Safe Communities America.
- International Designation - administered by the WHO Collaborating Center for Community Safety Promotion.
For more information, take a look at a side by side comparison of the national and the international designation.
Four Steps for National or International designation:
- Submit a Letter of Intent with the application fee.
- Submit your application document(s).
- A site visit by national or international certifiers (depending on type of designation).
- A ceremony celebrating your official designation.
The Safe Communities designation is awarded to communities that have demonstrated leadership in promoting safety, reducing injuries, and preparing their citizens for natural and man-made disasters.
National Designation requirements
Communities seeking National designation must meet the following four Areas of Competency, established by the National Safety Council:
- Sustained collaboration.
- Understanding of their community data.
- Offering of programs that address the intentional and unintentional injury patterns in their community.
- Demonstrate an understanding of evaluation.
International Designation requirements
Communities seeking international designation must meet the following seven Indicators established by the WHO Collaborating Center on Community Safety Promotion and the Safe Communities program:
- Demonstrate leadership based on partnership and collaborations with all community sectors that are responsible for safety promotion in their community.
- Long-term, sustainable programs covering both genders and all ages, environments, situations, and includes preparing their citizens for emergencies and disasters.
- Programs that target high-risk groups and environments and programs that promote safety for vulnerable groups.
- Programs that are based on the available evidence.
- Collect data on number and causes of injuries.
- Evaluate their programs, processes and the effects of change.
- Participate in national and international Safe Communities networks.
The application and certifying process are based on three documents: the letter of intent, the application and the internet application (only for international designation).
Letter of Intent
First, send your Letter of Intent with the application fee. The application fee will vary depending on which designation your community is applying for – national or international
. The letter must be signed by the Mayor (or similar function) and contain the following information:
- Name of community.
- Contact persons (name, title, address, email, phone number).
- Address of lead organization.
- Organization number/ tax number
The letter should be sent at least 6 months before the planned designation.
Mail the Letter of Intent and application fee to:
Safe Communities America
National Safety Council
Attention: Donna Stein-Harris
1121 Spring Lake Drive
Itasca, IL 60143
Any Letter of Intent without the application fee will not be accepted.
Please include the Invoice address and organization number/ tax number. An invoice with the application fee (1000 euros) will be sent to the community.
If your community decides on a National Safe Communities designation:
- Complete the national application.
- Send electronically, in PDF format, to Donna.Stein-Harris@nsc.org Safe Communities America at the National Safety Council.
If your community decides on the International Safe Communities designation:
- Complete the international application using the international guidelines.
- Complete an internet application (Form B).
- Send both documents, electronically to email@example.com at the WHO CCCSP.
(International fees have changed)
The application fee is due when you send in your Letter of Intent. The application is non-refundable. The fee varies depending on the designation your community is applying for.
National Application Fee - $1,200
International Application Fee – 1000 euros. For more information, please visit the WHO Collaborating Centre on Community Safety Promotion at http://www.ki.se/csp/.
(International Site Visit process has changed)
After reviewing your application, the Safe Communities America Certifying Center site reviewers will schedule a site visit with the community. The site visit is an opportunity to highlight your community and its safety promotion and injury prevention programs. (National and International designation comparison
Celebrate Your Success! The Safe Communities Designation brings international recognition to your community’s safety and injury prevention efforts. A Safe Communities America Certifying Center representative will be present to award your community this honor.
- Annual Reports
Communities that are part of the Safe Communities America Network will be required to submit an Annual Report. Directions for the Annual Report will be communicated to members of the Safe Communities America Network.
- After Five Years - the Re-designation Process
Communities are now required to submit applications for re-designation five years after their entry to the network. A Safe Communities America representative will provide additional information.
For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.