During July and August, matching funds grant checks for rural fire departments are being distributed by Missouri Department of Conservation Forestry Division staff. One hundred ninety-eight fire departments will be receiving checks of up to $3,000 to help them with the purchase of personal protective gear, and fire fighting equipment, for wildfire as well as structure fires. The total for fire department matching grants this year is $385,937. Fire departments are required to match these funds which are provided by the US Forest Service and the Missouri Department of Conservation. During the last 25 years, nearly $4,772,937 has been distributed to Rural Fire Departments to help them increase the safety of their fighters and provide them with better fire fighting equipment.