Grant writing can be an effective way to fundraise for your cause. Unlike face-to-face fundraising, grant writing focuses on creating a compelling call for support through a written statement.
You may never need to face your prospective funder in-person, although it would be prudent to acquire some background information about your funder and to communicate with them throughout your grant writing process.
Your organization can benefit from grants when time and effort is invested in submitting strong applications, and when your submission is clear, compelling, and supported by research.
Here are some tips to get started:
1.Find well-matched funders who will champion your cause.
Grants are available from various sources such as corporate, government, and foundation funders. No two funders are exactly the same, and many are precise about the type of cause which they will support. It is better to focus your efforts on funders whose interests align strongly with your organization’s mission.
2. Read the funder’s requirements carefully.
Find out when their deadline is and what their requirements are, and try to plan your application accordingly. You may need to gather supporting material with your grant application, including a budget, research to support your submission, letters of support, and financial reports.
3. Think deeply about the justification for your cause or program.
Imagine you are writing to somebody who knows nothing about your cause. What information would you give to convince them to donate to your cause? This is what you should consider when writing your application. Ask yourself the following:
- Why is your cause or program important to the community?
- Have you thought about how much money is reasonable to ask for and can you justify the means?
- What outcomes would your program result in, if your funding request is successful?
4. Consider your audience.
It is important to tailor your grant application and writing style to each particular funder. This is where researching the funder, and initiating communication with them can be helpful.
5. Revise, revise, and revise…
For the best chances of success, your grant application should go through several revisions before your final submission. You should be checking for grammar, spelling, and clarity. If possible, try to get a friend or colleague to review your work; they may catch something you might miss!
For more information on grant writing, please contact us at info (at) dogoodfundraising.ca. Whether you’re starting out, need advice about a specific grant, or are in the middle of submitting an application, we look forward to working with you to reach your fundraising goals!
Lee Chang is the Grant Writing Assistant at DoGood Fundraising Solutions.