By Marissa Burger, Quality Control Manager
Jim Collins, renowned business author, lecturer and researcher once said, “Great vision without great people is irrelevant.” This could not be truer when it comes to the important role a Grant Writer plays in the development and sustainability of nonprofits. Whether the organization is a public entity or a community-based 501c3 organization, grants play a major part in pursuing and achieving the mission of your organization.
But to many, grants are almost considered a dirty word. They take time (most often, a lot of time) and they can be hard to understand. Sometimes, due to the specificity of the Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA/RFP), it seems the funders have already decided who they want to fund before the competition is even conducted. However, it doesn’t have to be this way. Professional Grant Writers are well-versed in grant language and the history of programming. They are familiar with the nuisances of the submission and they are experienced in developing sound programs and budgets that will help your organization succeed. Here are additional reasons why hiring a professional Grant Writer is a positive move for your organization. (more…)
By Marissa Burger, Quality Control Manager
Finding the right grant to go after can be one of the hardest things to do in your pursuit of grant funding. When looking at grant programs it is important to pick a funder with initiatives that align with your organization’s mission. Along with determining consistent alignment, you must also make sure you are eligible and consider the particulars of the grant. These particulars include the amount of funding available, the maximum and minimum award amounts, the deadline, funding period, required activities, reporting activities and partnership requirements. (more…)
So your grant was rejected. Now what? Do you let all of the effort and resources you put into that application blow away like dust in the wind? No! You can learn a lot from rejection. Watch this 30-minute webinar with grant expert, Scott Hyland, as he shares how to take rejection and turn it into a successful grant application down the road. (more…)
Looking for faith-based funding? It’s important for your church to do some initial prep work to be ready when the appropriate opportunities present themselves. Follow these three important steps and you’ll not only enter the grant world with confidence – you’ll also be well on your way to meeting the important needs of your congregation and community.
When developing a grant proposal application, the funder will require multiple elements to be included. One of the most important elements included is the Project Budget and Budget Justification. Along with staying within the guidelines of the grant, which sometimes includes the maximum or minimum funding requests, cost per participant and maximum caps on administration costs and indirect, it is also important to build the budget so that the project can be effectively implemented upon award. An applicant should have a thorough understanding of the budget categories to be included in a budget. These categories include
Grant evaluation is a crucial component of the application and implementation process. Most funders require a plan outlining how you will measure the success of your grant goals, objectives and activities and what level of effectiveness will be fulfilled utilizing grant funding. A good evaluation plan produces objective information on the degree of accomplishments within the funded program, which in turn solidifies your commitment to the program, and the funder. Funders are accountable to their stakeholders and they utilize evaluation findings to relay the effectiveness of the program(s) they have funded.
Why is the Needs Section of a grant proposal so critical? Because this is where you snag the reviewers’ attention and prove why your organization is a worthy recipient of their funds. A good Needs Section is truly the difference between getting funded or having your proposal tossed in the slush pile. The elements of a successful Needs Section include: (1) Definition of the Problem; (2) Facts and Stats; (3) Cause, Symptoms and Effect; (4) Urgency and Proposed Solution.
It seems like nonprofit organizations are always finding new ways to fund their efforts and stretch those dollars as far as possible, but in a recession or political crisis we have to be even more creative about how to continually find funding and how to make it last.The initial instinct is to try to do more with less. This is always a good idea, and if you have the benefit of a large number of unpaid volunteers or unpaid interns you can really go a long way on just a little, but many organizations are not that fortunate and even those that are have real costs to consider as well. With this in mind we are forced to look outward and to reach for every potential source of funding possible. Many new or small organizations (and even some larger organizations) rely on regular or renewing donations from their community. If you are addressing needs in the community, there are often others who share your values and would like to help as well but maybe don’t have the time to get involved. Reaching out to your community, with an email campaign or a newsletter is a good way to keep in touch and can yield some funds. Hosting local events and fundraisers can also be a good way not only to raise funds but to raise your visibility in your community and remind people of the good work you are doing and that they can support you with donations as well.
In 1995, Dr. Deborah Montgomery founded Resources Associates, a grant writing and capacity building organization serving community-based nonprofits in central and southern California. Over the past two decades the company has grown to serve organizations across the entire country. We have worked with 501(c)(3) agencies, schools, tribes, governmental agencies, and businesses to win hundreds of millions of dollars in grant funding. In addition to our home base in Farmington, New Mexico, we also have locations throughout the country – in Fort Worth, Sacramento, Seattle, and Denver.
There are not many companies with this length of valuable expertise in such a specialized field. To offer perspective, here are some of the top headlines from 1995: (more…)
It’s a new year, and time to look at how successful your grant proposals were and, more importantly, identify how your organization can improve going forward. While no organization wins every grant it tries for, every application – whether it ends in an award or a rejection – offers valuable experience and insight that you can leverage to make future efforts even better and more successful.
As you prepare for 2018’s grant season, here are some steps you can take that will help you refine and improve your approach next year.