Grant Proposal Development

  • Once the appropriate department head has cleared the project and you have decided on a potential funding source, the Director of Grants and Foundations (DGF) will work closely with you to shape the proposal into application form. To facilitate this process, keep in mind that a successful application has a clearly defined project and normally includes the following components:

    A proposal summary (outline of the project’s goals)

    Introduction of the organization (presenting a credible applicant)

    A problem statement or needs assessment (state the purpose at hand)

    Project objectives (goals and desired outcomes)

    Project methods or designs (the plan of action)

    Project evaluation (objective evaluation & process analysis)

    The project budget (planning the budget using realistic numbers)

    Future funding (long-term planning beyond the grant period)

    Tips for designing a successful application:

    Follow the grant makers prescribed format.

    Brevity and clarity should be your goal when writing an effective application. Include enough information to describe the project, but be sure to communicate it in a clear and persuasive manner.

    Rational planning is also critical to avoiding the trap of circular logic (i.e. allowing your project’s solution to drive the problem instead of vice versa.) A problem statement should incorporate something that is too small, too much, too low, too high, etc. and the goal should be to alleviate that problem.

    The project’s objectives should be measurable by the degree of alleviation of the problem.

    By designing your proposal in this manner, you can keep your implementation strategy (plan of action) removed from the problem and goals statements. This structure will allow you the freedom to rationalize why your implementation strategy is the best for the circumstances over other alternatives.

    Please contact the DGF for assistance in developing your grant proposal.