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Grant Writing 101 How to translate your ideas into cold hard cash… or at least a working grant proposal.

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Presentation on theme: "Grant Writing 101 How to translate your ideas into cold hard cash… or at least a working grant proposal."— Presentation transcript:

1 Grant Writing 101 How to translate your ideas into cold hard cash… or at least a working grant proposal

2 Planning is the KEY The more you plan ahead, the more your head moves the plan… Planning makes your job easier in the long run, and allows for delegation... If writing makes you nervous, use a recorder, or tell your plan to a colleague…

3 Gather Your Courage Putting together a grant proposal is not difficult, it just requires some concentrated effort. Follow some simple rules, and you’ll be surprised how everything will fall into place…

4 Gather Your Strategies One Ideas : Now that you have one, what are you going to do with it? What exactly do you want to do? Why? Can you explain your idea to a 2nd grader?

5 Gather Your Strategies Two Who needs to be included? Are they? What are your obstacles? How will you convince them to cooperate? Who will benefit?

6 Gather Your Strategies Three Get the big picture in your head… Think about the problem you want to solve… If you were a business, how would you convince the bank?

7 Gather Your Focus: Honing your Idea What are you going to do? Why? Can you prove it is a need in your agency/community? How? This one’s hard… Are you reinventing the wheel? Is there someone out there doing what you propose to do? Have you considered a joint grant proposal with these folks? If not, why not?

8 Gather Your Tools Any project requires specialized tools. For grant writing, this is the idea, the planners or people who need to be involved and all the support documentation… The more you gather now, the easier the deadline crunch will be.

9 Using your tools… A Grant is made up of specific sections that must carry the thread of your idea all the way through. First, we’ll identify the sections Then, we’ll discuss them one at a time Finally, we’ll put the puzzle back together and look at how the pieces fit together. Remember to read the instructions, even the fine print.

10 Unlocking the Puzzle… The BIG Picture Keep in mind that sometimes...beginning at the beginning is NOT the best method of attack. Using a linear method of thinking will help you write the grant effectively without missing any pertinent information. Use the pages of the grant to follow your thinking, then put them in order by number. READ the guidelines and terms and conditions. Can you meet these? Does your project fall within the structure of the grant guidelines?

11 Unlocking the Puzzle… A Twelve Step Program to Success

12 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece One All of the SC Department of Public Safety - Office of Justice Program grant applications have essentially the same elements and format. This is the case with many proposals. Read the instructions. Budget Description Budget Narrative Program Narrative These three major categories break down into smaller components. We’ll address them one at a time.

13 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Two Budget Description This is where you describe what you intend to buy, during the grant cycle, to accomplish your objectives. Be exact: instead of “stuff we need” list the actual type of items: high resolution monitor, laptop, digital camera, etc, etc. On the other hand, don’t list brand names. Use the proper categories as well. If you have a match requirement, here’s where it shows. Add the numbers up by category from Budget Description and plug them into the first page. Do list dollar amounts, and use a calculator or spreadsheet. 1+1 must = 2.

14 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Three Budget Narrative This is where you describe why you need what you said you were going to buy in the Budget Description. How will a scanner help you accomplish your objectives? If you need that 36 in. high resolution monitor, say why. Be consistent, give the explanations the same numbering system or name as the Budget Description.

15 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Four Program Narrative This is where you will describe, piece by piece, in order, what your idea is, and how you will implement it. The smaller pieces that make up the Program Narrative will each have their own page in this presentation. Ready?

16 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Five Program Narrative Sub-sections Problem Definition What exactly do you think is wrong? Why? What do you or other experts believe causes this problem? Give proof. i.e., statistics, commentary, accounts from reputable sources, incidents. Give credit where credit is due: Cite your sources Are you addressing a priority or purpose area? Which one(s)?

17 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Six Program Narrative Sub-sections Project Description This is where you describe, with content in every sentence, what you intend to do to solve the problem you identified in the Problem Definition. How will your worthy idea solve the problem you identified in the Problem Definition? Can you show where this idea has worked somewhere else? Include all of the elements of your proposed project: personnel, tasks, activities, etc, etc.

18 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Seven Program Narrative Sub-sections Project Objectives and Performance Indicators (these should be done in tandem) This is where you describe what you expect the results of your project will be, in a detailed and quantitative manner. Who will you serve? How will you serve them? How many? By when? Who will be responsible for making sure this happens? Will you do surveys? Will you track numbers before and after your project?

19 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Eight Program Narrative Sub-sections Project Implementation Schedule This is where you put the information from Puzzle piece seven into a timeline format.

20 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Nine Program Narrative Sub-sections Organization Description This is where you get to sing your own praises. If you are the best on your block, say so. Be concise and pithy. Why are you the best one to accomplish the goal of your project? What makes you special? Cite specifics.

21 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Ten Program Narrative Sub-sections Interagency Coordination This is where you tell who you work with, how often, what you do together. What strides have you made toward a coordinated community response? Read whether or not documentation is required. Some grant applications require four (or more) support letters which you will attach to the end of the proposal.

22 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Eleven Program Narrative Sub-sections Volunteer Coordination - careful here… Some grant programs REQUIRE you to have volunteers. This is where you tell who is willing to give you time and talents for free. What do these honorable individuals do for you? How many of them are there? Do you train them, and if so, how?

23 Unlocking the Puzzle-Piece Twelve Program Narrative Sub-sections Project Continuation This is where you tell what you will do when the grant funding is no longer there. Do you qualify for any other funding? Have you worked out a self-sustaining plan to support this worthy project? Have you contacted other public or private sources of income?

24 Reworking the Puzzle… Making the Pieces fit or Coming back from the abyss

25 Reworking the Puzzle-Step One The Checklist: Things you might have missed Fill out the very first page carefully and completely. Organizational Chart Letters of Support ( If this applies to you. Some applications do not require letters of support) Filled out grant statistics page Filled out and signed audit page Filled out and signed signature pages - both of them with three different signatures. Job Description(s) For non-profits: both an IRS Certification and Letter from Board Chair Filled out source of income page

26 Reworking the Puzzle-Step Two First, get out the checklist. Next, get all the pieces together in the same box. Turn them all the same way. Do you have all the pieces? Put them in order according to the grant application. Does everything make sense?

27 Reworking the Puzzle-Step Three Does the grant flow logically from:  Organization Description (We are the right people for the job)  Interagency Coordination (We know the people to work with and for, and they know us. We already work together)  Problem Definition (We found something that needs to be fixed, did research and included the documentation)  Project Description (We think we have a solution, here it is)  Project Objectives (Exactly what our solution involves)  Performance Indicators (How we will prove we did what we said we wanted to do)  Project Continuation (What we will do if the grant funds are not available after this year)?

28 Reworking the Puzzle… Finishing Touches  Did you proof-read?  Did someone else proof-read?  Does your math work?  Have you met the deadline for submission?  Do you have the original and four copies?  Did you keep a copy for yourself?

29 Voila! Finis! Congratulations! You’ve just written a grant proposal.

30 things to consider There are other sources of income out there. –Private foundation recipients are frequently “wired”, Don’t give up, but don’t waste your time, either. –Private and non-governmental organizations have their own requirements. Read the instructions. Follow their rules. –Make sure your problem fits with their solutions. Know who you are working with.

31 resources I I I I I I I I but, wait there’s more

32 resources IHttp:// I I (this one was just for your amusement) I I I I the list keeps going and going… and going...

33 resources I I I I I this one has a email update function IThis list does not begin to address the FOR profit resources in your communities. Think about what you can do for them… Then, they will do for you… If you ask, they will help, and if they won’t… the next person will. See why you need a team? Let them supply non-monetary resources. A dinner for two as incentive package, or a case of paper… and going and going… and going...

34 resources I (this one costs money after 7 days) IYour local public library, and its resource librarian (your tax dollars at work… ) IAnd, speaking of tax dollars, build relationships with city and county/parish councils. Who holds the purse strings? Why should they help you? What’s in it for them ? IIn SC, we have funds that can ONLY be used for victim services. Bet you have something similar… IConsider a coalition researcher person to help everyone with funding opportunities and/or grant applications.

35 statistics Interview, ask your community, talk to the people who do the work you want to help. They usually know and can document statistics.

36 additional resources and information Program Planning and Proposal Writing* –Summary: clearly and concisely summarizes the request –Introduction: describes the agency’s qualifications or credibility –Problem Statement or Needs Assessment: documents the needs to be met or problems to be solved by the proposed funding –Objectives: establishes the benefits of the funding in measurable terms –Methods: describes the activities to be employed to achieve the desired results –Evaluation: presents a plan for determining the degree to which objectives are met and methods are followed –Future or Other Necessary Funding: describes a plan for continuation beyond the grant period and/or the availability of other resources necessary to implement the grant –Budget: clearly delineates costs to be met by the funding source and those to be provided by the applicant or other parties * This slide and the slides which follow are reprinted with express permission from the Grantsmanship Center News (copyright 1980) and are not further to be duplicated in whole or in part without express permission of the Grantsmanship Center.

37 checklist for proposal summary Belongs at the beginning of the proposal Identifies the grant applicant Includes at least one sentence on credibility Includes at least one sentence on problem Includes at least one sentence on objectives Includes at least one sentence on methods Includes total cost, funds already obtained, amount requested in this proposal Should be brief Should be clear Should be interesting * a final note of caution: don’t say too much. If your summary approaches the size of a modest proposal, the reader my read no more. Limit your summary to several paragraphs, half a page at most.

38 checklist for proposal introduction clearly establishes who is applying for funds Describes applicant agency purpose and goals Describes agency programs Describes clients or constituents Provides evidence of accomplishment Offers statistics to support credibility Offers statements and/or endorsements to support credibility Supports credibility in program areas in which funds are sought Leads logically to problem statement Is interesting Is free of jargon Is brief

39 checklist for problem statement Relates to purposes and goals of organization Is of reasonable dimensions Is supported by statistical evidence Is supported by statements from authorities Is stated in terms of clients or beneficiaries Is developed with input from clients and beneficiates Is not the “lack of a method” (unless the method is infallible) Doesn’t make assumptions Doesn’t use jargon Is interesting to read

40 checklist for objectives Describes problem-related outcomes of your program Does not describe your methods Defines the population served States the time when the objectives will be met Describes the objectives in numerical terms, if at all possible.

41 checklist for methods Flows naturally from problems and objectives Clearly describes program activities States reasons for selection of activities Describes sequence of activities Describes staffing of program Describes clients and client selection Presents a reasonable scope of activities that can be accomplished within the time allotted for program and within the resources of the applicant

42 checklist for evaluation Covers product and process Tell who will be performing evaluation and how evaluators will be selected Defines evaluation criteria Describes data gathering methods Explains any test instruments of questionnaires to be used Describes the process of data analysis Shows how evaluation will be used for program improvements Describes evaluation reports to be produced

43 checklist for future funding Presents a plan to provide future funding if program is to be continued Discusses both maintenance and future program funding if program is for construction Accounts for other needed expenditures if program includes purchase of equipment



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