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Submit grant proposals for charity walks

Non profits across the country send out grant proposals everyday seeking funding for their program services.  They compete with thousands of other organizations for the scarce grant dollars that are available. Development offices are always looking for tools to make their proposals stand far and above their competition.

Sadly, there are no special tricks. There are no magic attachments that you can submit with your proposal that will magically reward your organization with those coveted grant dollars.

The sad reality is that a perfectly written application can go unfunded. There are, however, several things you can do that will help your grant proposal and, ultimately, your organization noticed. Noticed and funded.

Appearance

Follow the rules. Most of the time the funding source tells you exactly what they want. Read the application instructions. If they say double spaced, single sided with one inch margins and no more than 10 pages; do not submit a 25 single spaced two sided document thinking they will like what you have to say so much that they will overlook your transgression. When it comes to grants you have only one opportunity to make a good first impression, it is imperative that you proofread and edit using a high quality grammar checker and the help of another set of eyes.

They won’t.

No matter how perfect your program is: if the funder doesn’t read your application it wont be funded.

Content

Once again, read the instructions. The funder will tell you what they want to know. If you are applying for state or federal funding, you will refer to the Request For Proposals (RFP).  The RFP will tell you everything they want to know. The RFP will tell you what format they want it in.  Use the RFP as a checklist to provide them with exactly what want.

The person who reads your budget and budget justification will not have access to the program narrative that was attached. Therefore, you, as the proposal writer, need to make sure that each section tells your story. Looking at a page of numbers and no context will not reveal very much about your organization. Let each section be part of a whole piece. Use the budget narrative to fully explain what the funds will be used for thereby giving the reader a full idea of what he or she did not see in the program narrative.

Quality

The non profit should be operating in a climate of measurement. It is not enough just to do something; you have to be able to prove you do something. More importantly, you have to prove what it means. Organizations that concentrate on performance objectives and outcome measurements will find the responses to funders questions easier to answer.

Your application responses should answer the questions the funder asks. You want to use this opportunity to share your story. You want your application to strike a chord in the reader. People give to people. It is that simple.

Extras

Do not add flourishes where none are asked for. Does your organization have a video presentation that you use at local civic events? Do not send it with your application unless it is specifically requested. Many smaller foundations have very few staff and do not have the time to review the material. Don’t count on that video to tell your story because, sadly, it won’t be seen.

Don’t use fancy bindings for your applications. 99% of the time the funder will tell you exactly how they are to be bound because 99% of the time the applications are separated and various people read various parts.

It takes practice. Not every application will be funded. And not every funder will tell you why it was not funded. When you can, ask for the critique and use it. Compare what they were looking for with what you provided and that will also give you a good road map to use with other applications. There are grant dollars out there and your job as the proposal writer will be to make sure that your application is the best it can be.

If you are tasked with fundraising and grant creation explore the features provided by Grammarly and bookmark English Grammar Rules.

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Categories: Fundraising

21 Responses so far.

  1. Great tips! Also, don’t feel too bad about it if declined. Sometimes it’s how you present it, not the intention/cause. So you’d have to learn from the (constructive) criticisms.

    • Roger CarrNo Gravatar says:

      Grace,
      That is a great point. We can all learn from the ones we win and the ones we don’t. The important thing is not to let rejection stop us. Thanks for sharing your insight.

  2. MarkNo Gravatar says:

    Sounds like you have an insiders view of how to succeed with these grants. Around our area, the local fight against diabetes could use these tips to raise extra money the event itself could not.

  3. AfifaNo Gravatar says:

    Grant proposals depending on the field for which they are required are really sales brochures for your organization. Start with a brief overview, followed by specific expamples of past or present performance in the field. You will need to clearly present how the funds will be used nad what the expected outcome is.

    • Roger CarrNo Gravatar says:

      Thanks for the additional tips for writing grant proposals. You have to meet the business side of clearly answering the questions regarding the plans for the funds and also show the possible outcome with an inspiring description of how the funds will make a significant difference.

  4. [...] sifted through all the foundations and organizations, you can then begin a systematic approach to applying for funding from those organizations that best fit with your organization. This gives you a better chance at [...]

    • Roger CarrNo Gravatar says:

      It is important to apply for grants that best fit with the organization and need. Any proposals that are not are unlikely to be funded and will result in wasted effort that could have been used in better ways to meet the mission of the organization.

  5. RochelleNo Gravatar says:

    Grant proposals depending on the field for which they are required are really sales brochures for your organization. Start with a brief overview, followed by specific expamples of past or present performance in the field. You will need to clearly present how the funds will be used nad what the expected outcome is.

    • Roger CarrNo Gravatar says:

      Rochelle,

      You are right. If the organization can show examples of being effective with past grant funds, it will provide additional credibility when submitting the current proposal.

  6. heidimoorezNo Gravatar says:

    I agree with you… Content is really one of the important things to be considered. Thanks for sharing your views.

  7. judithNo Gravatar says:

    Grant proposals depending on the field for which they are required are really sales brochures for your organization. Start with a brief overview, followed by specific expamples of past or present performance in the field. You will need to clearly present how the funds will be used nad what the expected outcome is.

  8. CarmelaJonesNo Gravatar says:

    Very well said, I learn in every tips been suggested..Grant Proposal’s usually take’s different negative feedback, So u must aware of it..

  9. CarmelaJonesNo Gravatar says:

    Very well said post, I learned so much about it especially the suggestion been posted..I think every Grant proposals had always a negative feedback so you must aware about it…

  10. CarmenNo Gravatar says:

    Great. I definitely agree with the comments above that the very first thing to consider to make grant proposal stand out is the content and it must be in good quality.

  11. NancyNo Gravatar says:

    You may start with a brief overview, followed by specific expamples of past or present performance in the field.Keep up the good work1!!

  12. FrankNo Gravatar says:

    I agree with you.
    Content is one of the most important things to be considered. Good work!

  13. JoyNo Gravatar says:

    Thank you for this additional tips for writing a grant proposal. Great!

  14. The tips are really great. One thing I learn about rejection is that it helps me to do a better one and to improve my self more. I always look rejection on the positive side.

  15. PubuduNo Gravatar says:

    Now you can hire a expert to write the proposal from freelance sites and get it nicely done.There are people who are experts in these proposal writings.

  16. ChristineNo Gravatar says:

    This is very true. Hooking grants would need you to follow very specific instructions. And in reality, we as charity workers are supposed to be the ones who will try to please our sponsors. Without them, who would fund our work?


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