Monday, November 14, 2011

How to Succeed With Emergency Grant Opportunities

Good news! You non-profit organization just received an invitation to apply for a grant. Bad news! The application is due next week and you have at least a dozen other priorities.

Here’s a schedule to help you organize your preparations to meet the application deadline and provide a competitive application for funding:

Day 1

1. Review the donor’s website. Contact them for application requirements. Ask initial questions. Read any guidelines, marking all requirements with a tick box. You will fill the box in with a check mark during your final review after you fulfilled each requirement.

2. Do you need information for anyone else? Request their help. Establish Day 5 as their deadline.

3. Create an application dummy with scrap paper. A dummy is a mockup of the total grant proposal you will submit from cover letter to you’re the last page of the attachments. As you work, you will replace the dummy pages with completed ones so you can identify missing items. Take time to organize your submittal now instead of at the last minute.

4. Start drafting. Use paragraphs from existing materials, like case statements, bio statements from key staff.

5. Make a first attempt at creating the project budget.

Day 2 and 3

6. Continue drafting, aim for 1-2 hour sessions per day, during your most productive interludes. Apply butt glue, if necessary.

7. If you get stumped, you probably need more information. Find someone with answers or to make project decisions.

8. Time helps. The difficult questions you struggled with today will be easier when you review them tomorrow.

Day 4

9. By now your draft is emerging. Plan to work in shorter time blocks. Re-read sections while waiting for appointments, when you’re on hold or 15 minutes before lunch.

10. Email or call everyone who needs to provide you materials to remind them of the pending deadline.

Days 5, 6, and 7

11. Proof the draft, triple check all dates and numbers.

12. Ask one or two other people to read it.

13. Read the final application aloud. Check off the requirements you completed. Flag uncompleted items. Make a list of these and work through them one-by-one until all is done.

14. Compile the final document. Make copies. Remember to keep one for your organization. Deliver the application.

15 .Relax! You made it!

For more grant writing articles to help you non-profit organization earn funding, see this directory.

For six audios to purchase that will help you write grants if you are a newbie or an expert, follow this link. Each offers one hours of training from Karen– and contains the content of her famous grant writing workshops.

For other sources of non-profit income to augment your grant opportunities, read this article. Can Your Organization Obtain More Income?

Karen Eber Davis

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