You can pursue grants from foundations, corporations, or government agencies. You will need to write a grant proposal, following the guidelines of the potential funder.
- You can receive generous amounts of money.
- Once you have obtained one grant, you are more likely to receive others.
- Receiving grants is a good way to build your organization’s visibility and credibility.
- You need to do time-consuming research on the granting agency before writing the grant.
- You need a person talented and experienced in writing grants who is also very familiar with your organization.
- Competition is fierce, and the success rate is low. On the average day, roughly 2,700 grant proposals are submitted; fewer than 200 will receive funding.
- There are strings attached to the money you receive. You can’t do whatever you want with the funds.
- Most grants are short term. When they run out, you have to start over.
Tips to Remember
- When writing your proposal, focus not on your needs but those of the potential funder.
- It’s crucial for you to have a well-defined mission statement and to find a funder whose mission statement dovetails with yours.
- Pay special attention to the exercises you completed in step 3, in which you determined how your constituents defined your organization’s strengths and market niche.
- Assessing the funding environment through the eyes of a targeted donor is critical to proposal success. The Checklist For Grants will help you perform such an assessment.
- If the funder turns down your grant proposal, don’t be discouraged. Politely ask why you were turned down—and what you can do to improve your chances next time.
For monthly updates on current grant opportunities, subscribe to the Society’s e-newsletter–Funding Alert.