grant writing needs statement

Using credible sources in a grant’s need statement

Every grant has a need statement and every winning grant has a great need statement. This part of the grant proposal is one of the most important. It describes the problem the grant will address in great detail, setting up the argument for the grant award.


Without firm legs to stand on in the grant’s need statement, the rest of the grant application is worthless. A weak need statement will likely lead to a funder throwing the grant in the rejection pile.


When setting up the argument in the grant’s need statement, it’s imperative to find credible sources to back up your assertions. You need research to help your assessment of the problem at hand the need of the population you’re serving  stand up.


This research may include demographics, poverty statistics, or health and disease information. It may also include quotes from experts or citing conclusions from reports and presentations.


You’ll want to cite your sources in a footnote or in-text citation, rather than in your grant’s need statement. Find the original source if possible for example, don’t quote a website that quotes a World Health Organization report. Find the WHO report and link directly to that source material.


The internet is a great place to start looking. From there, you might also call experts in your subject area or visit your local library, where a research librarian might be able to lend a hand. Program staff at the nonprofit you’re writing for might also be good sources; they’re typically dialed in to the latest research in their field.


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  • Avatar for Dan Podobnik

    Dan Podobnik

    10.01.2020 at 07:37 Reply

    My partner and I have started a private practice couple years ago and now we want to get involved in a nonprofit or rather found 1 probably wouldn’t hurt for me to have a degree in social work, when writing Grants correct? like my partner who a licensed clinical social worker.
    Even though I don’t want to counsel and only be administrator then we may need some help already grants as well

    Your input please?

    • Avatar for PGWAdmin


      10.01.2020 at 08:23 Reply

      Hi Dan, I do not think you need a degree in social work to write or administrate grants.

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