Writing a grant proposal to a donor is the process of applying for funds to support your non-profit organization’s activities. The process may be vague to you but you don’t have to worry, with some guidance and helpful tips, you’ll be able to write an effective grant proposal of your own.
For many non-profit organizations, the process of securing a grant is not an easy one. They may be at a disadvantage if they aren’t familiar with the basics of submitting grant proposals. It’s important to take into account certain steps in which you must clarify the amount of funding needed and the goals you want to achieve. The crucial part is your grant proposals must be precise and personalized, each donor is different so you must know how to appeal to them by understanding their funding interests.
Saudi Arabia is known for the generosity of its people and the government’s assistance in many fronts. You can find many entities that are able to provide grants for your non-profit organization. The non-profit sector itself enjoys a pivotal role in the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, and hopes are pinned on its development and economic contribution, as the sector is expected to grow and contribute to a total of 5% of the Kingdom's GDP in 2030.
Tips to write an impactful grant proposal
The process of writing a grant proposal may seem daunting, but it doesn't have to be. You’ll be able to make an impact as long as you’re working towards a noble cause and have a clear vision and mission. Here are some practical steps to help you write a grant proposal that will help put you on the path of success and development:
1- Research grant opportunities thoughtfully
Searching for grant opportunities can be complex, but you can start by trying to search the databases of entities that have received funding and see what they offer. Keep in mind that most of these databases focus on non-profit foundations or family businesses, and often don’t include opportunities by government entities or large corporations.
2- Determine the right criteria
Donors develop specific, clear criteria to guide their decision-making process, and this is an excellent way to determine if your non-profit organization would be a good fit. Consider creating a spreadsheet that shows all the criteria requirements donors usually look for to assess a non-profit organization to measure where you stand. You can gather your team in a session to define your activities and clearly ask:
What does the non-profit organization offer?
How will the non-profit organization address the problem at hand?
Who will be on the program delivery team?
How will the non-profit organization integrate diversity, equity and inclusion into its programs?
How much does it all cost and how will it change people's lives?
3- Feel free to contact donors
It’s best to contact donors directly if you’re not sure that your non-profit's program is a perfect fit for the grant. Explain to them how interested you are in participating in the opportunity and ask if your organization is a good fit for them. You can call them directly if their phone number is available or contact them via email. Try not to think of it as intrusive but rather treat it as relationship building. Familiarize yourself with all the details related to your non-profit's history, mission, budget, team, as well as project breakdown, potential partnerships, and project outcomes.
4- Create an impact management strategy
Clearly explain how your activities will change communities and beneficiaries and how you will keep track of your progress. When measuring impact you should not only include the number of people you serve, but also qualitative data about how much change your organization creates. Highlight potential barriers to your project and discuss how you will address them. You can also talk about the sustainability and scalability of your project or program.
5- Your details have to be convincing
Donors will make decisions to provide funding solely based on your proposal, so be sure that the grant proposal uses compelling, accurate, and clear language. An important part of the proposal is the budget and how detailed it is. It should be clear in numbers and matches the content detailed in the rest of your proposal. If your offer is unclear, donors will not contact you with questions and their decisions will be based on the information available to them. Your budget should be clearly defined and easy to understand. Also, don't forget to attach any required documents or extra information.
Have faith and confidence in the work of your non-profit organization and you will surely find a suitable donor to help you grow and develop your programs. However, you have to keep in mind the realities of the current funding environment. The pandemic has changed grant policies, as many donors are now moving towards more transparent processes and supporting more diversity, equity and inclusion. Writing a grant proposal may take some effort, but it’s all worth it when aiming to achieve the noble goals of your non-profit organization.
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