1. Reason and Emotion in Grant Preparation & 2. Exporting The U.S. Style of Fundraising

Sections of this topic

    1. Using Both Reason and Emotion in Grant Proposals – Part I: Reason
    by Lynn deLearie

    Successful grant proposals are often carefully crafted using both reason and emotion. This week I’ll address…The Use Of Reason.

    Grants are NOT no-strings-attached gifts. Grants are contracts between grantors, who provide the funds, and grantees, who perform the tasks and deliver the outcomes described in the proposals. Proposals must, therefore, logically show how non-profits will use grant funds to effectively deliver the outcomes that grantors are hoping, and expect to see achieved.

    In Using Reason:
    Follow the guidelines, follow the guidelines, follow the guidelines – ‘nuff said!

    Use credible research in your needs section, to help make the case for support. This demonstrates that you clearly understand the needs of your target population within the broader context of your community. Citing credible research also adds to the credibility of your organization. Check with your program staff – they are the experts on what your organization does and will have the most relevant and up-to-date research related to their programs. Ask them for data and statistics to use to make a strong case for supporting what they do.

    Use demographic data to describe your target audience. Include all relevant statistics: race, age, gender, income, etc.

    • Indicate that your program model is rooted in research-based best practices. Reference the studies from leading institutions that your organization used to develop your program model.

    Include quantitative metrics in your evaluation section. Quantitative metrics are measurable, and grant reviewers are increasingly asking for more meaningful data. Programs are intended to change behaviors and/or attitudes. Measuring how many people showed up is no longer good enough. Measuring knowledge before and after a particular program activity (pre- and post-testing) would be a viable quantitative metric.

    Indicate that you use your evaluation findings to modify program design. This will demonstrate that your organization takes program evaluation seriously. You are evaluating your programs to improve their effectiveness, not just because grant applications require that you do so.

    Financials – definitely need to be reasonable here… and follow the guidelines! Many foundations define reasonable as spending at least 75% of your annual operating expense on programs and services.

    Next Wednesday I’ll take a look at the Emotion side of proposal preparation.

    Lynn deLearie Consulting, LLC, helps nonprofit organizations develop,
    enhance and expand grants programs, and helps them
    secure funding from foundations and corporations.
    Contact Lynn deLearie

    Look for Lynn’s ebook on Grants & Grantsmanship.
    It’s part of
    The Fundraising Series of ebooks
    They’re easy to read, to the point, and inexpensive ($1.99 – $4.99)

    2. The U.S.-Style of Fundraising Can Work in Other Countries
    by Tony Poderis

    Understanding the Concept and Asking The Hard Questions
    The United States, Canada and the United Kingdom share a long tradition of people helping others through their support of nonprofit/nongovernmental organizations.

    Fundraising for charitable organizations that promote human welfare—as well as for arts and cultural entities, and for NGOs that do good works—is not just accepted, but is encouraged in our societies.

    While the U.S. and some other countries enjoy a long heritage of private support for charitable organizations, individuals in other countries are just as caring and supportive as Americans, Canadians and Britons.

    The philanthropic process of raising money, however, has been entirely unknown to folks in countries other than those three or, at best, only introduced in recent decades.

    The fundraising process should be the same no matter where it is practiced. What’s missing in countries with young or newly emerging nonprofit and NGO charities is the philanthropic system itself, and the habit of fundraising/giving. These are, of course, formidable challenges. But I know from experience that they can be overcome.

    Where Do You Stand?
    First, let’s determine exactly what challenges you may face by reviewing the following questions:

    — Is there little or no tradition or habit of fundraising in your country?

    — Are there few, if any, favorable tax provisions or other incentives in place to encourage charitable giving by individuals and businesses?

    — Is there a long-standing tradition of parents bequeathing all, or most, of their assets to their children?

    — When government funding of nonprofit organizations and NGOs is cut, do nonprofit organizations in your country turn first to the international community for support, rather than developing fundraising capabilities at home?

    — Regarding the seeking of funds from the international community, on the other hand, does your government inhibit foreign funding from coming into your country?

    — Do some in your government discourage the work of charities for selfish gain? Do they themselves secure funding that they directly apply to the public’s needs so they can make their constituents beholden to them, thus helping those officials retain their positions in the government?

    — Are your government’s laws, regulations, and its general oversight of charities operated through a maze of bureaucracy whose red tape makes it harder for charitable organizations to be established in the first place and to freely function later?

    This posting continues on July 9, addressing the Steps Needed to Make It Work.

    Have a question or comment about the above posting?
    You can Ask Tony.
    There is also a lot of good fundraising information on his website:
    Have you seen
    The Fundraising Series of ebooks ??

    They’re easy to read, to the point, and inexpensive ($1.99 – $4.99)

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