How to write a grant proposal

Grant proposals are to be treated as a project with a defined deliverable or end result for the money sought. Projects must show tangible results or funding will not be granted. A successful grant proposal is one that is carefully prepared, planned, and packaged.

How to write an effective grant proposal:

  1. Write a strong cover letter
  2. Start with a short executive summary
  3. Introduce your organization
  4. Write a direct problem statement
  5. State your goals and objectives
  6. Project design: methods and strategies
  7. The evaluation section: tracking success
  8. Other funding sources and sustainability
  9. Outline a project budget

So what is a grant proposal?

In short, it’s a request for an investment in a non-profit or for-profit project. At first glance, grant proposals bear benefits only to the organization or individual entrepreneur who needs the money. But that’s not exactly true.

For Grantees (A Grantee is an individual or organization giving you the money), it’s not an investment in some random project but an investment in positive change. Thus, they can have a huge impact on issues that concern a company’s morals, values, or culture.

A bit of stats:

  • The Department of Health & Human Services offers more than 100 different types of federal grants that nonprofits may apply for. Federal Grant A8201 is one such example — this program focuses on prevention efforts like reducing tobacco use among youth or providing education about healthy eating habits across America.
  • The average nonprofit spend up to 200 hours writing a single federal grant application. That’s an enormous time investment for any organization, but you can save up to 30 hours with the ready-to-go PandaDoc grant proposal template. The payoff can be huge too: The US government provides $3 billion in grants every year and has promised never-before-seen funding rates of over 50 percent this budget cycle!
  • If you’re looking for a way to make your nonprofit more successful, then this statistic is the answer. 75% of grant seekers who submitted an application won an award while 94% percent of those with three to five grants received at least one! Of applicants that had six or ten applications on hand — 98%.

Writing an effective grant proposal: the key steps

Before you start, you need to prepare. If we are talking about how to write a grant proposal for a non-profit organization, this document should be only a small part of your fundraising plan.

First, you need to define your fundraising goals, estimate the cost, develop the timeline of your project, and find prospective grants.

Almost the same applies to the process of “how to write a grant proposal for a small business”. In the United States, the new business should register in a federal grant program before they can ask for a grant.

It makes sense to submit a short grant letter before writing a full grant proposal to save you time.

If your Grantee approves your letter and sends you a request for a formal grant proposal, you can proceed with writing a detailed RFP response to this prospective investor.

To save even more time, you can use our document management software to assist you in this difficult task. Besides grant proposals, it can handle your quotes, agreements, contracts, and proposals.

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