from the files of Barbara Jean Hicks
Providing information to schools and PTA/PTO’s about companies and organizations that provide grant funding for “extras” like author visits (see Focus on Funding) is a great start to helping schools be able to afford your expenses and speaking fees. But writing grant proposals is an art that many people don’t feel comfortable with. How can an author help?
As promised last week, here’s a place to start:
TEN TIPS FOR WRITING WINNING GRANT PROPOSALS
1. Before you start writing your grant proposal, know the answers to these three questions:
• How will your proposed project benefit the students and/or families in your school?
• How will your proposed project benefit your school as a whole?
• How will your proposed project benefit the funding organization?
2. Clearly define the need for your proposed project. Use examples. Grantors love a good story!
3. When possible, use statistics or cite research to support the need for your project.
4. Write your proposal in positive terms. Focus on opportunities and positive outcomes.
5. Use the same terminology in your proposal that the foundation or company uses in its grant description.
6. Include the evaluation process you will use to gauge your proposed project's success. Grantors want to fund projects that will show measurable progress.
7. Use an easy-to-read 12 point font and standard margins. Don’t use formatting “tricks” to force information into limited space. Your proposal will be more difficult to read, potentially annoying the reviewer—something you don’t want to do!
8. Make a memorable first impression with a catchy name that is also descriptive of your proposed project.
9. Keep your proposal short and to the point.
10. Choose funding agencies whose priorities match up with your proposed program's objectives.
Follow the link to a printable file of TEN TIPS FOR WRITING WINNING GRANT PROPOSALS
TO THINK ABOUT:
Have you ever written a grant proposal? Consider approaching a teacher, school principal or PTA/PTO president, pitching your school visit program, and volunteering to write the proposal to fund it if they are interested and willing to submit it. (In general, grants are available only to not-for-profit organizations, so you won’t be able to access the funds on your own.) Here are some additional resources that make the grant writing process more approachable: