Proposal Planning and Writing

Proposal Planning and Writing

Proposal Planning and Writing

Proposal Planning and Writing

Synopsis

Writing proposals to win grant funding can be daunting, difficult, and time-consuming. This clearly written, reassuring book offers specific examples, models, and step-by-step instructions to guide readers through the maze of grantseeking for all kinds of grants, from local and federal government programs, to grants from private foundations and corporations. Particular attention is paid to using the computer and the Internet to help in applying for grants.

Excerpt

He from whose lips divine persuasion flows.

Alexander Pope

For most organizations, today’s reality presents a gap between what they want to do and the resources available to do it. To close this gap, many are seeking outside sources of financial support through grants.

Normally, people don’t just give money away. They do, however, invest in causes in which they deeply believe. Sponsors will invest in your cause when you can persuade them that you actually share the same values. Persuasion is a key element to successful grantseeking.

Grantwriting is a form of persuasive writing. Beginning grantwriters sometimes assemble a collection of facts and present that information to grantmakers, hoping to receive support. Successful grantseekers know that persuasion, not information, attracts funding. They know that winning proposals must systematically respond to the needs of the sponsor.

This book helps you successfully traverse the grants gauntlet in an era of increased competition by suggesting many persuasive writing techniques. It begins with a list of questions frequently asked by both inexperienced and experienced grantseekers and then offers answers to these questions as directly as possible to provide efficient and effective strategies for successful grantseeking. The book guides you through a systematic, step-by-step approach to developing persuasive and successful grant proposals.

The content of this book is based, in part, on our grantseeking experiences over the past three decades in writing successful proposals, conducting grant workshops nationwide, and reviewing proposals and critiquing application guidelines for government agencies and private foundations. The ideas and procedures described in these eighteen chapters are applied on a daily basis in our grants offices and at thousands of schools, colleges, universities, hospitals, clinics, agencies, research institutes, and foundations. The book is heavily sprinkled with examples taken directly from successful proposals that have generated more than $25 million in grant funding.

Your successful grant proposal should show the uniqueness, underlying resources, and potential benefits of your proposed idea—benefits that match closely with the interests of potential funding sources. This book presents specific guidelines and examples designed to maximize the likelihood of a match between the two.

COMPUTERIZED GRANTSEEKING

Computers play a significant role in today’s society, and the grants arena is no exception. This book shows how computers can simplify the grant development process. And you don’t have to be a computer guru to take advantage of electronic information sources that will help you to quickly identify appropriate funding sources. Many of the existing computer programs are “user-friendly” and “idiot-proof.” By using computers to develop your grant proposals, you will be able to submit more proposals in less time, thereby increasing your chances of getting funded.

If you have not had much computer experience, particularly on the Internet, details concerning Web site addresses or search engines can be almost blinding. Fortunately, if you can point and click your mouse, you will comfortably manage the electronic grantseeking information offered in this book. Chapters 2 and 3 identify a number of Web addresses that will help you find funding sources for your projects; Chapter 17 describes how to use search engines to de-

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