Presentation on theme: "Hop Into Grant Writing 101 NAI Region IV Conference March 27, 2012 Mary Beth Hudson, CIG."— Presentation transcript:
Hop Into Grant Writing 101 NAI Region IV Conference March 27, 2012 Mary Beth Hudson, CIG
Grants 101 Some Basics Grants are typically provided for new project ideas or for new ideas for existing projects/problems, land acquisition or equipment purchases. Grants are project specific. Some grants will require cost share expenses, others will not. Remember grants are contractual agreements not just free sources of money!
Take that First Leap. -What is stopping you? FEAR!!!!! Reality: Only one proposal in 5 usually gets turned down for poor ideas. Reality: A rejected proposal is not a failure, but rather just another lily pad to step on! Keep it and keep trying! Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither should your idea! Reality: Success rates increase with each resubmission. Rates of acceptance for third submission proposals is almost 1:1.
The Process Determine your project or idea. Research your idea, is it a brand new project or a different take on an existing project? Determine your project budget. Contact the sponsor/foundation. Remember to play by the rules! Get, read and follow the guidelines!
Hopping your Idea is a Good One! Does your project meet the guidelines? Is there a conflict of interest? Does your idea think outside of the box for the problem addressed? Is there a need for the project, not a want? Is your agency capable of handling not only the design and implementation of the project but future maintenance of the project? Does your staff fulfill any professional requirements for the grant?
Plan plan plan Do not wait until the week before a major grant is due and decide you want the funding. DO YOUR HOMEWORK!!! Get all your frogs in a row. Gather your tools. Include any key players who may not be part of your staff but whose presence will increase your chances of getting funding. Research your budget. Are you purchasing specialized equipment? Shop around and get the best prices and keep this research, you will use it later. Community support. Does your project fill a void or need for something in the community. Contract services. Will there be building, purchasing of land or other needs. Does it have significance beyond your local area? Why has this not been done before? What will the impacts be if you obtain the funding versus not getting the funding? Are you able to fulfill the project in the time proposed? DO YOUR HOMEWORK and DO NOT WAIT until the WEEK before a grant is due to peruse it.
What Not to Do Wait until the week before a grant is due and decide to pursue the funding. Attempt to fit a square peg in a round hole Not follow all guidelines and rules laid out by the grantor Not have a concrete budget with proof Write in first person Fail to proof read your grant application Turn your application in early Fail to complete all parts of the application Give up! If at first you do not succeed try try again!
Tricks to get your grant noticed Do your homework and research research research! Attention is in the detail. Gather as much community support as possible. Follow the guidelines, rules and application process down to the font used. Prove your budget and show them they are getting their monies worth! Proof read, three times or more by OUTSIDE people! Keep the verbiage simple. Make sure you have all the pieces to the puzzle. Pictures speak a thousand words. COST SHARE! The more you can contribute the better! Keep your funding sources local, if possible. Prove you have the capability to continue the project in the future. Have an evaluation plan in place to measure success or failure. Contact the grantor!!! Research as shown that 85% of applicants who contact the grantor, even with a simple question, have had successful rates of acceptance. They want to help you succeed. Use them!
14 Reasons Why Proposals Fail Deadline was not met Guidelines not followed Project was not intriguing Project did not meet priorities Incomplete application Failed to be proofread Appeared beyond the capacity of the requesting agency Methodology was weak Unrealistic budget Cost greater than the benefit Highly partisan Poorly written Mechanical defects
So Many Frogs So Few Lilypads Or is there? Look for smaller foundations that focus on your general area region. Look to big box stores, the marts, gets, or home improvement stores Utility companies Banks Pepsi or Maxwell House State grants Federal grants Organizational grants Something about a Region IV Interpretive project grant or something And remember you do not need to purchase memberships to directory's. Many local libraries already have memberships and will share the listings with organizations such as your self! See where other people have obtained funding. Do not reinvent the wheel! Google search google search google search
Questions, Comments My grant writing experiences do date are over $900,000. This includes federal, state, local and private funding for various parks and not for profit agencies. I am a self taught grant writer who has used her experiences both successful and not in her approach to grant funding. My mantra, it doesn’t hurt to try! HOP TO IT!!! What are you waiting for?