Grant Writing 101

The first thing to do when you plan to write a grant: understand your mission and purpose. You should find grant funding that meets YOUR vision, not the other way around. There are many ways to find grants, but a simple google search might possibly reveal an opportunity. If you are a church-based group, you might check with your affiliate organizations. If you are with a government-related agency, you might check Grants.gov. Once you find that perfect grant, the real work begins. Here’s a few steps to get you started:

  1. Be sure to address each prompt/question thoroughly. Use the exact descriptors and words from the prompt/question in phrasing your answers. For example: If the question prompt is: What is your organization’s strategic mission and how can it increase opportunities for workforce development? Your answer will start like this: XYZ enterprise’s mission is _____ and through this funding, opportunities for workforce development will occur by ______.
  2. Follow the template exactly. Don’t deviate and go rogue creating your own version of how you think your narrative should go. Answer each question in the order they are presented on the RFP (Request for Proposal), using their numbering system and format.
  3. Start working on your budget requests early. Budget is a VERY important area that will likely be revised multiple times as your plan develops. Don’t forget to add fringe rates for personnel and an Indirect Cost allocation if allowable.
  4. Do it with a team! Many hands make light work! Facilitate a team with planning and discussion sessions to capture buy-in and different opinions and insight. This team will be your extra eyes and hands for editing and re-editing.
  5. Ensure your proposed activities support the funding purposes and/or the funding agent’s mission.

There are many elements to a great grant proposal that will get it noticed above others. Remember, grant writing is typically a competitive effort, and you will want to submit a PERFECT proposal to the funding agency. Of course there’s always people to help your organization such as Learn New Mexico. I have a stellar record of obtaining grant funding, and I would love to help you achieve your dream! learnnewmexico.com michelle@learnnewmexico.com

Published by michelle perry

I was a public school teacher and administrator in the state of New Mexico for 25 years. Currently, I am employed as an administrator in higher education and am enrolled in a PhD program in curriculum and instruction with an emphasis on learning technologies.

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