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Writing a Grant Proposal

How to Write a Grant Proposal?

What is a Grant Proposal?

A grant proposal is a proposal designed to inform a funding source about activities within an organization and seek grants or funding to initiate new projects or sustain old projects and activities within the organization. A grant is meant to sustain a nonprofit, social, educational, scientific or technical organization. Grants are usually not provided to for-profit businesses, unless there is a social or environmental cause involved. Some businesses do have socially responsible nonprofit projects and may seek or receive grants, and thus require Grant proposals. Grant proposals seeking funding are usually written by individuals who may require funding for their educational, scientific or social projects, or by nonprofit organizations that depend on grants for their health related, or social, scientific or educational programs and services. Grants are usually large sums of money given to promote specific causes and may range from a few hundred to millions of dollars. Grant making organizations primarily have philanthropic purposes although some grants are meant to further scientific research, social objectives, environmental causes or may be given to promote educational programs or artistic goals. Grants are given to inventors, scientists, artists, writers, students, social organizations, social workers, researchers, environmentalists and activists.

What is the purpose of a Grant Proposal?

Write a Grant Proposal

The primary purpose of a grant proposal (compare it to a Research Proposal) is to seek funding from relevant funding sources. Organizations write and send grant proposals to funding bodies to seek funding for their projects and to inform funding sources about their programs, projects and activities. Grant proposals help organizations to seek and get grants or funding to finance their programs. Unlike a business plan that is based on a for-profit model and provides information on how the funding can be returned to the funding source, a grant does not necessarily require the money to be returned to the funding source. However, a grant proposal does have to provide details on how the money will be utilized, just like a business plan. A grant proposal thus requires a detailed budget and detailed plan on organizational programs and activities. A grant proposal must identify a social, environmental or educational problem, offer a solution, identify the stakeholders and propose the programs, projects or approaches to tackle or address educational, social, environmental or scientific problems. Grants are usually offered to organizations according to the information they provide on the grant proposals and grant making bodies determine the suitability or eligibility of organizations on the basis of the grant proposal. A grant proposal must clearly state the vision and mission of the organization seeking the grant, state its purpose or aim, what it seeks to achieve and how its programs or projects can justify its need for funding.

How to write a Grant Proposal?

What are the different types of Grant Proposals?

Grant proposals must differ according to the type of grant sought. Grants can be block grants and block grants provide funding for a wide range of projects. Block grants provide money to organizations without specifying purpose and with no preconditions on how the money has to be used. Nonprofit organizations sometimes seek block grants to fund a range of different projects and draw up a general grant proposal to seek money for a wide range of related projects, either from a single grantor or from many funding agencies.

Grant proposals are also written for categorical grants and these grants are only given for specific projects, require project details and have limited scope or applicability. These grants can only be used for specified projects and grant proposals have to be focused, with relevant details on the project or program for which the grant is applied.

Concluding Remarks

A grant proposal, like a CV or resume, must make an impact on the grantor or funding agency and your grant proposal must stand out to ensure that the grant application is successful. Always review the requirements of the grant application carefully to determine whether the grantor or funding organization is suited to your project needs. Go through the portfolio of the funding organization. Is this organization right or a good match for the program or project you need funding on? Has the funding organization funded similar projects in the past? What are its interests, vision or mission? Do these align with your goals, mission, vision and objectives? After considering every detail, write an effective grant proposal that will not just highlight a problem but also provide a solution and convince the grantor that your project or program is the right solution to the identified problem. Make a strong case and try to make your grant proposal stand out among other proposals. In most cases you may have to compete with other grant proposals to secure a specific grant, so put in your best efforts and ability, specify all details of your project and funding requirements and edit or proofread thoroughly. Good luck with your grant proposal and remember to check out to find out how they can help you to acquire the grant that will change your life.