Did you know that there are over 65,000 privatized foundations along with hundreds of corporations and government agencies that are ready to give away billions of dollars in the form of different types of grants? Before you run out to try your luck, you should get some basic information on how to apply for grant money. Here are some key steps:
Spot your favorite funders. You can join any of the online foundation directories. For instance, Foundation Search can be a good place to look. The same goes for The Foundation Center.
The only negative side of these sites is that they are a bit pricey. But these directories provide you with ready access to the latest info on thousands of grantors in the US. So the price is worth the value you get, since it gives you some starting point that you can apply for grant money!
If you think that joining those online directories is too expensive for you, you can buy an annual printed directory they publish. But you must understand that these printed directories need to be supplemented by further research. Keeping your information up-to-date is important!
Sit with your colleagues and try to define what your organization or project is all about. There’s a lot of tough competition for government or private grants out there. So you’ve no choice but to give it your best shot!
You should still be honest while trying to convince the prospective funders. Try to get clear ideas on how that grant money you’re applying for would be utilized or how it’ll bring long and/or short-term benefits to the community.
Build your action plan. Once you’ve jotted down your goals that you want to achieve with the grant, your next step would be to develop a solid step-by-step work plan to apply for grant money. Generally, your funders are interested in knowing whether you already have the knowledge, experience and competence it takes to achieve your goals and to use that grant money wisely.
Get started with the ‘letter of intent’ for applying. It should describe your profile in brief, along with your project’s goals, objectives and mission. In this document you’ll clearly mention the amount of money you’re asking for.
Theoretically, this ‘letter of intent’ is supposed to get the funders familiarized with your organization or project. Therefore, it should showcase the project in a compelling way to grab the interest of the readers. You want to ensure that the readers feel inclined to learn more and eventually ask you to submit the application officially when you apply for grant money.Â
Did you know that the U.S. government gives out billions in grants to over 18 million people annually? Well I do, since I received over ,000 to start-up my new business.