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What Are Your Funding Needs? Grant Writing Tips for Nonprofits

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July 16, 2019
Author: Ben Halverson
Organization: Lorman Education Service


Successful Grant Writing Tips For Your Nonprofit 

Grant writing is a great way to get others involved with your organizational cause. In fact, knowing how to write grants will help your nonprofit get the funding it needs too. Your organization is using their professional traits and skills to reach out to others that may be interested in joining your cause and supporting your funding needs. 

Many businesses depend on grant writing to fund their project ideas, but it's essentially imperative for nonprofits. More importantly, the ability to write grants may have an impact on your funding for years to come. According to Charity Navigator, $77 billion in grants are awarded each year in the United States. The following blog discusses grant writing tips for your nonprofit organization. 

Do Your Homework 

Research the available grant opportunities for your organization. With the billions of dollars in grants given out each year, your nonprofit should have a strong knowledge of what grant options are available to you. Look for grant-makers that your organization has a connection with. You want the foundation responsible for granting your organization the funds to take notice of your cause. Here are some things to look for: 

  • a mutual friend or connection (involved with the a foundation) 
  • a foundation that gives to nonprofits similar to yours 
  • a foundation that's local to your nonprofits branch or headquarters 

Credit: Dip Jar 

Follow The Guidelines 

The grant industry is very competitive and it would be a shame to miss out on an opportunity for a technicality. Make sure you're following all of the standard guidelines to ensure your grant proposal is a success. Pay close attention to format requirements and questions with more than one part to avoid a mistake or not following foundation guidelines. 

Grant Summary Guidelines To Look For Include: 

  • summary 
  • organizational background/needs 
  • program model 
  • goals 
  • evaluation 
  • budget 
  • timeline 
  • work-to-date 
  • contacts 

Credit: Dip Jar 

Tackle The Solution Over The Problem 

Many organizations will be quicker to fund your cause when it establishes a solution. Writing your grant and focusing on the problem is not a good way to get the funding your organization needs. Focus on telling a story about the problem that your organization plans to eliminate to capture the attention of any foundation responsible for awarding funds. 

Use Simple Language 

Quantity is not always better than quality. Don't try to impress the foundation with big words to make yourself appear to be well versed. Sometimes, simple words that state the solution will be enough to get a foundation to take notice of your nonprofit. Allow the language of your grant proposal to effectively communicate with the foundation. 

Make Sure Your Needs Fit The Foundation 

There's nothing worse than reaching out to a foundation that's not on board with your cause. Looking for funding sources your organization has something in common with to increase your chances of getting awarded a grant. 

Hire A Proofreader 

Use as many eyes as possible to proofread over your proposal. Have other people at your organization read over your grant, but if possible also hire an outside set of eyes to make sure everything is in order. In fact, have a professional grant writer double check your grant proposal for errors. 

Accept Rejection  

Remember, that not every organization will receive the funding they're after on their first or second grant proposal. Be willing to accept rejection and use it to refine your grant writing skills for future proposals. Take a moment to go over a rejected proposal and see what you could have done differently. 

Final thoughts: With every grant writing opportunity, you're closer to becoming an expert.  

You're invited to contact us at Lorman for more details on how to write a grant proposal for your nonprofit organization. 

Supplemental Resources: 

Dip Jar: "6 Grant Writing Tips For Nonprofits"  https://www.dipjar.com/blog/6-grant-writing-tips-for-nonprofits


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