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How To Find Grants And Write Winning Proposals By Research Works

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An introduction on where to find FREE funding for nonprofits, individuals and businesses, tips for writing winning proposals and where to find help if you need it. Originally presented 4/1/2010 by Mariam Williams of Research Works

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How To Find Grants And Write Winning Proposals By Research Works

  1. 1. Getting Free Money How to Receive Grants: An Introduction Presented 4/1/2010 to Kentucky Networking Group by Mariam Williams Writing & Communications Consultant Research Works
  2. 2. Getting Free Money <ul><li>Why grants? </li></ul><ul><li>Looking for grant opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>I found an opportunity. Should I apply? </li></ul><ul><li>Writing a winning grant proposal </li></ul><ul><li>Fiscal responsibility </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why Grants? <ul><li>Free money! </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunities for businesses, non-profits and individuals </li></ul>
  4. 4. Why Grants? <ul><li>Grant funds are awarded to support: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Arts, humanities and cultural affairs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Business, commerce and economic development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Community development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Education </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Employment </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Why Grants? <ul><li>Grant funds are awarded to support: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Energy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Environment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Health </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Housing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Law, justice and legal services </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Why Grants? <ul><li>Grant funds are awarded to support: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Organizational Improvement </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Science and technology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Targeted populations (by gender, race, age, veteran status) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Transportation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>And more! </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Looking for grant opportunities <ul><li>Grants.gov </li></ul><ul><li>Grantstation.com </li></ul><ul><li>Local or state representatives’ websites </li></ul>
  8. 8. Should I apply? <ul><li>Look at the request for proposals (RFP) or funding opportunities announcement (FOA) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Eligibility - Do you meet eligibility criteria? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Required forms - Do you have all the required forms? Can you get them by the deadline if you don’t? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Does the maximum amount you can request make sense for your budget? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deadline </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Should I apply? <ul><li>The RFP or FOA: </li></ul><ul><li>Federal Example </li></ul><ul><li>Please see link in blog post if viewing online. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Should I apply? <ul><li>The RFP or FOA: </li></ul><ul><li>Individual </li></ul><ul><li>Example </li></ul><ul><li>Please see link in blog post if viewing online. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Writing a Winning Proposal <ul><li>MEET THE REQUIREMENTS </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Follow page setup guidelines </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>See federal RFP example, page 14 </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Include all required documents </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>See individual RFP example, pages 3-4 </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t ask for more money than the maximum allowed! </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Writing a Winning Proposal <ul><li>Be specific and concise </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Page limit = no rambling! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use charts and graphs if they tell the story better, or in less space, than words </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use exact dollar amounts in your budget instead of rounding </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Writing a Winning Proposal <ul><li>State FACTS </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Say it well, but back it up with numbers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoid generalizations and assumptions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Assumption: American children eat too much and don’t exercise. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Acceptable: It is well-documented that obesity is at epidemic levels among American children. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Generalization: There’s a liquor store on every corner in West Louisville. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Acceptable: There are 3 liquor stores per square kilometer in the 40210 zip code. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Writing a Winning Proposal <ul><li>Make your organization stand out: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Color </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Include your logo where appropriate </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use your organization’s colors as budget headings </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Strong project title </li></ul></ul><ul><li>For individuals, use only your best work </li></ul>
  15. 15. Writing a Winning Proposal <ul><li>Correct all misspellings, grammatical errors and commonly confused words </li></ul><ul><li>Make sure the numbers in the budget, budget narrative, abstract/summary/cover letter and proposal narrative MATCH </li></ul>
  16. 16. Writing a Winning Proposal <ul><li>Review what the narrative MUST include </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Found in scoring matrix, priority considerations or guidelines </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>See pages 11-12 (pages 9-10 printed) of federal RFP </li></ul></ul></ul>
  17. 17. Writing a Winning Proposal <ul><li>LEAVE TIME TO REVIEW, REVISE AND REWRITE!!! </li></ul>
  18. 18. Writing a Winning Proposal: Should I hire a professional? <ul><li>Expense </li></ul><ul><li>Benefits: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Saves you time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provides knowledge and expertise you may lack </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. Writing a Winning Proposal: Should I hire a professional? <ul><li>Research Works offers several levels of consultation: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Evaluation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Is my idea, company or organization strong enough to win this grant? </li></ul></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Writing a Winning Proposal: Should I hire a professional? <ul><li>Levels of consultation: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Research </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Where do I find facts that help me avoid generalizations? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>I found tons of information. How do I organize it? How do I know what’s important? </li></ul></ul></ul>
  21. 21. Writing a Winning Proposal: Should I hire a professional? <ul><li>Levels of consultation: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Writing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>I have the research organized and know what’s important. I need help turning these numbers into a convincing proposal. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>I say my ideas well, but they never come out the same way on paper. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  22. 22. Writing a Winning Proposal: Should I hire a professional? <ul><li>Levels of consultation: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Idea/Program/Curriculum Development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>I meet all the requirements for the grant, but my idea is vague. I need someone to develop the guidelines and/or specifications for a program that would fit this proposal. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>BEWARE OF UNDERESTIMATING PROGRAM COSTS! </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  23. 23. Writing a Winning Proposal: Should I hire a professional? <ul><li>Levels of consultation: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reviewing, Editing, Revising, Rewriting & Proofreading </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>I’m so proud of myself for writing the proposal on my own! Now I need someone to: </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Review the document against a scoring matrix </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Make sure I matched all the RFP’s requirements </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  24. 24. Writing a Winning Proposal: Should I hire a professional? <ul><li>Levels of consultation: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reviewing, Editing, Revising, Rewriting & Proofreading </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Tell me where the wording just doesn’t make any sense (and/or rewrite those passages) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Correct misspellings, improper punctuation, commonly confused words and grammatical errors </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  25. 25. Fiscal Responsibility (after you receive funding) <ul><li>Don’t lose your money or cheat yourself out of future funding opportunities! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Accountants are friends </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Accurate record-keeping </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Plan for achieving non-monetary goals </li></ul><ul><li>Be able to show direct results of funding </li></ul>
  26. 26. Thank you for your attention! <ul><li>www.LetResearchWork4You.net </li></ul>

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