The Writing Successful Grants KnowledgeBase is an online resource aiding education professionals in their pursuit of public and private grants to support local programs. Its five elements contain information and resources that assist the grant seeker with developing their project, writing the grant proposal and managing the grant upon its award.
Purpose: Writing a successful grant application begins with understanding the reason for seeking grant funding from a governmental agency or private foundation. If the grant seeker is a school, the organizational assessment undertaken for improvement planning may provide useful reasons for the desired funding.
The grant seekers organizational assessment must address the subject area the funding organization has an interest in supporting. In regards to a governmental grant proposal, the assessment must address the request for proposal's focus.
Element 1 outlines the tasks involved in creating an organizational assessment.
Guideline: Each project team member brings their ideas and perceptions to the discussion. Brainstorming is a helpful tool to explore ideas in a non-threatening way to develop group consensus. Using such a techniques offers an abundant list of ideas to consider. When considering brainstormed ideas, organizations must be aware of the requirements and focus of the funding source.
This checklist offers a list of helpful questions when considering project ideas.
Individual group members often have divergent viewpoints. Edward de Bono's Six Thinking Hats is a system fostering collaboration, increased productivity, creativity, and innovation. The concept enables participants in a discussion to move from the traditional argumentative approach to a collaborative process and fosters a more productive dialog. The document provides an overview of the tool and additional resources about it.
This process is adapted from the Pennsylvania Workforce Investment Act website Grant Proposal Worksheet. The nine steps listed here with supporting worksheets may help project teams define broad problems, identify the underlying causes, and develop a project idea to address those causes.
Purpose: Prior to writing the grant application, the project lead should pre-plan how the application will be developed, a timeline for completing it, and an internal review process for the application. Element 3 outlines the steps in creating a road map for the application process.
Purpose: The grant proposal brings life to the project idea. It is the vehicle the grant seeker uses to sell their idea to the prospective funding sources. Element 4 outlines the steps to develop and submit a successful grant application. Once the application has been submitted, follow-up with the funder is essential.