Crash course in Grant Writing from a Grant Writer.
Tuesday, February 26, 2019 1:07 PM
“You know what you should do, right? You should write a grant!” How many times have you heard a kind hearted parent or volunteer say? That is fantastic! A grant! Why did I not think of this? Oh, right… I’m thinking about all the other things that keep this place afloat.
So, grant writer extraordinaire, I have never done this. How do you write one?
Step 1: Decide what you need. It’s a Catch 22 thought: if I have the money, I can figure out what to do with it **verse** once I find the grant, then I can figure out what I need.
Both of these are common ideas, but the basic fact is that you need to know what you need before the research even starts.
Step 2: Break it down. What is it that you need? Why do you need it? “Because it’s cool” or “it’s what the kids want” sells t-shirts, it doesn’t sell grants. Why would this thing you need be beneficial to your school? Who will it affect? What will the outcomes be?
Step 3: Get estimates. Make phone calls, make friends, make appointments. Get estimates. What is this project going to cost?
Step 4: Hit the Pavement. Or the Information Superhighway in today’s world. Start with our best friend and smartest thing in the room, Google, and spread your wings from there. Get a pen and paper and start making a list.
Are you looking for an outdoor classroom? Search “outdoor classroom grant” Once you have a list of about a dozen solid prospects, cross reference what your assets are.
- Who are the members of your community? Are they employed by companies that work in the same line of work that you are looking for? Using this same example, Outdoor Classroom Grant, do you have parents employed by Scott’s or Lowe’s?
- What local companies would be interested in some goodwill publicity?
Step 5: Now what? You have your estimate, you have your grant, you have your contact…. now what do you do? Sit down, make a list of the requirements for the grant and… ready for this? Follow the directions and write the grant. If the grant is so specific as to the type and point of the font, the number of pages or the spacing, please do not think that the rules do not apply to you. Trust me, as a lifelong rule bender: the rules always apply to you. Keep it in the parameters. Grant readers are looking for reasons to throw out applications as to narrow the playing field. Don’t get thrown out on a technicality.
Step 6: Write another one. Just because you wrote one does not mean you need to rest on your laurels and wait for the response. Take those same words and submit it again to a different foundation. Adjust as needed.
Step 7: Pat yourself on the back. Writing a grant is intimidating, to say the least, but when you break it down and take it one step at a time, it is not overwhelming.
Don’t have the time? Don’t have the energy? Don’t have the time or the energy? Call Grant Work, LLC and see how easy she can make it. Eliminate Steps 2-7 and make the one step an easy one.