Where to Begin?

Writing a grant on your own? Where to begin? You must clearly follow the application directions and respond to every single question with appropriate data, details and research.  

When you conceptualizing your program – think in terms of the whole being equal to the sum of all these parts:  

  1. Executive Summary
  2. Organizational Background and Description
  3. Existing Resources
    1. Board of Directors 
    2. Staff
    3. Financial Management
    4. Facilities
    5. Licenses
    6. Equipment 
  4. Needs
  5. Program Narrative – Program Description
    1. Goals
    2. Objectives
    3. Activities
    4. Timeline
    5. Program Evaluation
  6. Budget
    1. Proposed Budget
    2. In-Kind Budget
    3. Budget Narrative 
Although the Budget comes last, Libby Hikind, CEO and Founder of GrantWatch.com and GrantWriterTeam.com, recommends the following:
"Start with the proposed budget. Be very clear how you will use the funds to address the programmatic needs.
 
Will the award of the grant combined with your existing resources (in-kind support) be enough to successfully run the proposed program? Only include allowable items in the proposed budget (read the RFP – grant application – very carefully). Perhaps you will need to scale down or scale up your ideas or seek additional funding from other sources.
 
 The budget will become the blueprint for the entire proposal."

Within the budget section, you will list all expenditures so that the funding source may see where and how the grant money will be applied. You will then describe in narrative format the details of why the funds are needed and how they will be spent. Every section of the budget narrative is an individual short paragraph.

Libby Hikind reminds grant writers,

"Throughout the grant, be sure to reference the items in budget.  When the funder reviews the budget and narrative, they will recognize the need for each budget item and its importance and relation to the proposed project."

About the Author: This article was written by Sabeen Faquir, MPH, in collaboration with Libby Hikind, CEO and Founder of GrantWriterTeam.com.

Grant Writing Bid Etiquette

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There is table etiquette. And there is etiquette for grant writers when bidding on projects

Once your profile at GrantWriterTeam.com is complete with professional references and a resume highlighting your grant accomplishments – and you have accepted your contract with us, you will be able to bid on current, live grant writer requests.  

How to Bid:

  1. Read the writer request to see if it matches your expertise.
  2. Click Bid Now.
  3. Do not include your hourly charge in the first sentences of the bid paragraphs.
  4. Highlight your specific writing skill-set.
  5. Submit your bid!

First, read the writer request. There maybe a veteran’s shelter, a women’s’ support organization, an athletic program or a wide variety of nonprofits and small businesses that are looking for funding. What in your experience prepares you to write for them? It could be your job to not only write a grant or multiple grants for them but to help them search for grants. It’s important to understand with what they are seeking assistance.

If the request asks for help to fund a free health clinic but you have experience writing grants for low-income housing nonprofits, then highlight your experience with writing for low-income area projects. We are looking for highly skilled writers with specialties. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When you’ve determined a job is appropriate for you, click Bid Now. This will send you to a screen which asks about your pricing structure and abilities plus your expertise. DON’T talk about your pricing structure in the first sentence here. Emphasize your skills.

In the first sentence of each of the bid paragraphs, you should take the opportunity to really highlight your talents and experience. The first time we submit your bid the client will get your single bid. Every day, the client will get a cumulative email with all the bids – until they decide upon a grant writer.  In the chart, they will see your first sentence of each paragraph.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, submit your bid. Then, wait for the client to choose you. You are allowed unlimited bidding for the time that you are a paid member. 

At GrantWriterTeam, we have two types of membership: One-week and one-month. Each comes with free membership to GrantWatch for the same time period. You can choose when your membership at GrantWatch should begin – most likely you will want to start it when you have a client. 

About the Author: Sabeen is an MPH and currently writing for GrantWatch.com and its affiliated websites.

What Goes Into a Business Plan?

A major difference between grants for nonprofits and grants for small business is that grants for small business almost always require a business plan. A grant writer from GrantWriterTeam.com can help you develop a business plan. Here, I am going to summarize a couple sections of the business plan. A good business plan has the following sub-documents:

  • executive summary
  • company description
  • market analysis
  • organization and management
  • service or product line
  • marketing and sales
  • funding request
  • financial projections, and
  • appendix.

Executive Summary

The Executive Summary is considered the most important section of a business plan. It is where you explain yourself. What makes you think you will be successful? This summary should be comprised of the following section titles: Mission statement, Information, Highlights, Products/Services, Financial and Future Plans.

Our grant writers are skilled communicators and can help you come up with a clear and decisive Mission statement. 

The Information section should include when your business was founded, by who, and the number of employees you have plus your locations.

Highlights should include information about growth, especially financial. Here, you should write about profit margins.

The Products/Services section obviously explains your product or service.

The Financial section should include your bank and the identities of any lenders. 

Finally, in Future Plans, expound upon where you want to see your company in 10-20 years.

Market Analysis

According to the Small Business Association, (SBA), the following are section titles for the market analysis: Industry Description and Outlook, Information About Your Target Market, Pricing and Gross Margin Targets, Competitive Analysis and Regulatory Restrictions.

In the Industry Description and Outlook, include information about the size and growth rate of your industry. Get into the history of your industry and include major customer groups.

Within Information About Your Target Market, include who is your target market. Remember to have a narrowed market because casting a wider net may not bring in a bigger yield but instead, waste resources. Know your market’s distinguishing characteristics, size, and how much market share you can potentially accumulate.

The Market Analysis also has other sections such as Pricing and Gross Margin Targets where you include your pricing structure.

The Competitive Analysis is where you evaluate your competition.

Finally, Regulatory Restrictions is where you include any laws or regulations affecting your business, and how you plan to follow them.

GrantWriterTeam

A grant writer from GrantWriterTeam.com can help you write all the sections of a business plan to include as part of your grant proposal. Remember to give them the complete and correct information so that he/she may write accurately. Fill out a request for a writer here and call (561) 249-4129. 

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