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Presented by DJT Consulting Group For Pacific Library Partnership July 13, 2011 Enhancing Your Fund Development Capacity.

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Presentation on theme: "Presented by DJT Consulting Group For Pacific Library Partnership July 13, 2011 Enhancing Your Fund Development Capacity."— Presentation transcript:

1 Presented by DJT Consulting Group For Pacific Library Partnership July 13, 2011 Enhancing Your Fund Development Capacity

2 Introductions Presenters: Dan Armenta and Sherry Bruning, Principals DJT Consulting Group, LLC  DJT Consulting was founded in 2000 as a consulting firm specializing in project management for grant proposal preparation. We also help with grant administration, reporting, designing evaluation plans and data collection tools, development/editing of various organizational documents and plans, etc.  Clients are primarily units of government/public agencies (cities, counties) and non-profits  The four DJT principals have obtained over $100 million in grant funding, including approximately $30 million for public libraries

3 Today’s Main Topics  The Library Fund Development Project and information about the free services available to libraries  Challenges to be aware of in today’s fund development climate  Overview of grant-seeking strategies and funder searches  Tips on developing successful grant applications  Opportunities for questions/feedback

4 …AND HOW IT CAN HELP YOU The Library Fund Development Project…

5 LSTA, PLP and DJT  This project is a component of a LSTA grant received by PLP  The project’s focus is to help libraries increase their grant fund development capacity by identifying new funding sources and providing technical assistance related to grants  PLP has contracted with DJT Consulting Group to help accomplish the project goals

6 Free Services Available To You Through This Project  In-person consultations with DJT to assess and identify funding needs: A mini grant fund-development plan will be developed for you with potential funders for the needs identified  Competitiveness screening – DJT can perform reviews of grant opportunities, providing an analysis of how competitive you would be  Grant application review: review of your proposal to help increase competitiveness  Other technical assistance related to funder searches and grant writing All of these are designed to build your internal capacity and help you increase skills/knowledge…

7 What is a Grant Fund Development Plan?  Assists an organization in determining grant funding goals and how to prioritize them  Provides short and long term grant funding goals  Provides a “road map” of grant programs that will assist the organization in meeting those funding goals  Provides a cost for achieving those funding goals

8 To Access Project Services This is a time-limited project - if interested, please set up an appointment before September 15. You can let us know at the end of the webinar if you’re interested in a consultation or get further information / make an appointment by: Calling Sherry Bruning Ph: 408-280-1153 or Emailing Sherry

9 Challenges in the Current Fund Development Climate

10 Ripple Effects of the Economic Downturn  Less government grant money available  Fewer foundations accepting unsolicited letters of inquiry  Stricter review processes  Increased competition for grants, yet little money available for hiring grant writers = overwhelmed staff  Stricter requirements for grants that are awarded, including more mandated reporting

11 Grant-Seeking Strategies and Funder Searches

12 Resources for Finding Funders Bidsync Foundation Center (many free resources and a “menu” of cost-related funder search tools)  Basic categories of funders to search: federal, state, foundations, corporations  Where to search (examples:, Bidsync (free), Foundation Center)  Search strategies o Have a consistent process: assign one person to access and share info with staff o Use “alerts,” sign up for email notifications o In doing searches and setting up alerts, try different key word combinations – be creative

13 Other Funding Search Strategies  Set up a table of your competitors and/or similar organizations - in your region, state and nationally o Monitor the funding they receive (their website announcements, Guidestar, etc.) o Determine if you are eligible for funding from the same sources  Develop partnering ideas and search based on those potential projects. Partners could include community-based organizations (FOL and other library support groups!), schools, local historical societies, museums

14 Think “outside the box.” Say, you are a library, not a green energy organization. Yet, your library needs energy to run… …Partner with a green energy organization/company and apply for mutually beneficial grants/resource opportunities Partnering Example

15 Longer-Range Strategies  Regularly monitor legislation and planning activities of “powerbrokers” in your field or in fields that intersect with yours. These folks can benefit from your subject matter expertise and other tailored input. Are there ways you can help shape the outcomes?  Network with foundations – make connections to increase your chances of being invited to apply for funding in the future

16 Developing Successful Grant Applications

17 Getting “Proposal-Ready”  For Federal grant proposals, ensure that registration is complete with or other federal agency. Start this process early!  Make sure you have a DUNS #  CCR registration  If partnering with a non-profit, check that they are in good standing and their non-profit status is current. Checks can be performed at the CA Attorney General’s website and on

18 Documents: Have commonly used materials ready in editable format (resumes, org. charts) If applicable, set up any PDFs as editable, with True Type fonts (new rule for some federal submissions) When relevant, get information on previous unfunded submissions from the funder. Make the written feedback available to the grant writing team

19 When The Grant Opportunity Is Announced:  Read the guidelines and supporting materials several times – ensure you’re eligible to apply. Proceed if eligible, and:  Subscribe to updates – submission deadlines and requirements can change  Monitor the funder's website for new FAQs and announcements  Ask questions of the funder: send emails versus phone calls - sets up a documentation trail

20 Assess Your Competitiveness You’re eligible to apply for a grant – what next?  Conduct a “Competitiveness Screening” o How much funding is available and how many grant awards will be made? o Who is your likely competition and how do they stack up against you? o Can you demonstrate a strong need for your project? Is it unique/innovative? Do you have the necessary capacity, experience and expertise to carry out the project?

21 Project Management  Develop a timeline for completing the proposal with roles, responsibilities and due dates clearly detailed o Take into consideration the submission process – do you need to create multiple copies, submit original signatures or create.pdf files? Delivery process? o Assign a team member to monitor the timeline and send reminders  Be realistic about assignments, timelines, capacity of team member(s)  Troubleshoot early and often; consider the “ripple effect” of delays and other issues

22 Team Availability and Communications  Ensure proposal team will be available during preparation period  Collect contact information (cell, alternate email, home, business, other)  For each entity on the grant preparation team, agree on one point of contact  Agree on preferred communications modes, especially for after normal office hours

23 Team Roles Define roles before working on the proposal. Examples:  Grant project manager or “lead” - highest authority for decisions  Project administrative assistant - tracks deliverables and timelines, reports issues, communicates with team members for efficiency  Writer(s) and budget developers (often the same person)  Liaison with funder, if any  Liaison with key stakeholders

24 Team Electronic Capacity  Confirm the team’s electronic and document preparation capabilities (fax, versions of Word, Excel, Adobe; ability to “zip” files, create images, etc.)  Determine how to share large files

25 Writing and Editing The Proposal  Set up a “template” for the grant narrative with an outline of the required sections. Insert the guidelines and scoring criteria  Refer to the guidelines and scoring criteria frequently while writing  The grant template can include a “style sheet” to prevent time- consuming consistency edits later (font type and size to be used, style of headers, acronyms, spacing between sections)  Develop an agreed-upon method of version control and plan on at least 3 full drafts  Plan carefully regarding review/feedback on drafts  Who will be providing feedback and how?  Use of “track changes” in Word

26 Common Trouble Spots in Preparing Grant Applications  Not creating a timeline or specifically identifying roles/responsibilities for completing the proposal…or ignoring the timeline  Making unsubstantiated claims in key areas. Provide evidence. Support your statements with data, especially need statements  Creating project deliverables or activities that do not directly address the identified need

27 Common Trouble Spots, Continued  Proposal sections that do not correlate or match up o Common issues: staff titles different on the budget, budget narrative and project narrative; budget doesn’t include line items for something described in the narrative; numbers inconsistent throughout the proposal o Do an overall edit/check of the completed proposal to make sure all items and sections match. This includes budget, budget narrative, project narrative and all forms

28 General Grant Writing Tips  Develop a strong need statement – find and integrate data to make a good case for your proposal  Find a “hook” or theme that makes your project stand out  Directly address the requirements or questions without using vague or ambiguous language. Try to be as concise as possible  Make sure your project activities are realistic, can be accomplished within the timeframe identified and by the staff described in the application

29 Questions/Feedback

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