Grant Proposal Writing Checklist
- Books are published every year with lists of grants. Go to the reference section at your library, or check a reliable website.
- Before you put all the time and work into a proposal, contact the grant giver to confirm the deadline and to find out whether the grant is still available.
- Every grant will have a list of rules that your project has to fall inside if it's going to be eligible.
- Before applying for a grant, you need to know your project inside and out. If you can't quote figures and explain it in plain language, you need to do more research.
- It's important that you do the math and figure out exactly how much money you need to complete your project. If a grant is too big, you'll need to explain what you'll do with the rest of the money; if it's too small, you should explain where you plan on getting the rest of the cash you need.
- Make sure you can offer a prediction as to how soon your project can be completed once you have the grant money.
- It doesn't matter if you're looking to finance your college education, get money to write a novel or to expand your business, but you need to have a clear goal in mind.
- Collect data about your project. Get the facts about similar endeavors and their chances for success.
- It needs to include your mission statement, your goals, how many resources you need and the research to show you can get started.
- Every proposal begins with an introduction, moves to several paragraphs of body and ends with a closing. Assign the order and main topic of the paragraphs before you even think about opening your word processor.
- No matter how technical your project, spell it out in plain, easy-to-understand language. If you absolutely must use technical terms, be sure they're defined.
- There is no faster way to shoot yourself in the foot than to ignore your spell check on a grant proposal. Check the basics and make sure there aren't flaws that will get you denied.
- Read and re-read the guidelines. No matter how well-written or brilliant your proposal is, if it breaks the rules, you won't be eligible for the grant.
- Add pictures and schematics if they bring your point home.
- Proofread your proposal at least twice, making sure you bring a fresh set of eyes to the document each time. Once you're sure it works, give the proposal to someone else to read it over and give you an outside perspective.
- Save your grant proposal as either a Microsoft Word document, or as a document in Rich Text Format. Other types of files may be hard to read, and if your proposal can't be read it will be rejected.
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Want free money to go to school, start a business or do any of a hundred other things? Then what you need is a grant from the government or a non-profit organization. If you want to stand out from the competition, you need a professional and detailed grant proposal, which is easier to write than you may think. With a little planning and proper research, your proposal will win over the selection committee and have you at work on your project in no time.
- Check those figures. Before including any numbers, make sure to double-check your sources and your math.
- Watch the deadline. Work at a steady pace and have your proposal ready to be turned in before the due date so you have a cushion for fixing last-minute problems.
- Think about your environment. Write your grant proposal in a place that's free from outside distractions, where all of your research materials are on hand.