There’s a grant due when?
According to Giving USA, foundations gave charitable organizations in the US nearly $67 billion last year, and corporations gave nearly $21 billion. That’s a lot of grant writing, and that doesn’t even include government grants and contracts.
Most nonprofits rely heavily on grants for funding operations and programs. With so much riding on the skills and diligence of your grant writer, how much support do you give them?
Is your grant writer part of a grants team or do they work in isolation? Ideally, a grants team is a mixture of finance, program, and development staff that are thinking strategically about program development, budget projections, and relationships.
This team should have a grants calendar and meet monthly to review the next quarter’s deadlines. How do the funding opportunities in the next 90 days align with the programmatic and financial needs of the organization?
A big grant writing myth is that “it’s a numbers game” — submit as many grants as possible with the hope of getting 10% funded. “The more we submit, the more we win” mentality. Well, not so much.
Grant writing should be as relationship-based as major gift fundraising. How well does the foundation program officer know your organization, its mission and impact, and its leadership?
Part of that relationship building is ensuring that the right ask is being made at the right time with the right materials. No one person can do that alone.
Your grant writer needs access to people and information to successfully write, submit, and manage the grant. When leadership views grants strategically, rather than a numbers game, the community wins because your critical programs and services are funded.
To learn more about grants planning, I’ll be speaking at the GPA Central Ohio Chapter on Thursday, May 9 at noon. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Article by: Kerri Laubenthal Mollard, Founder & CEO