How to plan and design a grant proposal

Grant proposals are increasingly accepted through online forms, but we don’t think paper proposals are going away any time soon. A significant percentage of foundations still request paper applications, and many of them don’t give many guidelines for putting one together. That means you’re all on your own, staring at a blank Word document. What’s a grant writer to do?

Without guidelines, you should break your proposal down into sections, including:

Overview: Summarizing all parts of your proposal in one or two short paragraphs

Organization introduction: Who are you, and why are you the right organization for the job? What are your past accomplishments?

Need statement: Demonstrating a strong need within your community for you organization’s assistance.

Goals and objectives: Outlining what your program will achieve (it should fill the holes presented in the need statement)

Program activities: What exactly your organization will do to achieve these goals. Be as specific as possible.

Evaluation: Demonstrating how you will measure whether you’ve made progress towards your objectives or fallen short.

Personnel: Who will be doing the work at hand and what are their qualifications?

Budget: What will it cost to run the program you’re proposing, and where will this foundation’s money go?

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