You have probably heard of funding opportunities that promise to give out a certain amount of money ranging from as low as $1000 to as high as $100,000. The question is how do you get such amazing opportunities?
Grant, if you are not familiar with term means a certain amount of money given by either a government, organization or person for a particular purpose without the requirements of ever paying back.
This article serves as a guide to help you do two things:
- Guide you on the decision to make regarding applying for a grant
- If you do apply, it provides you tips that increases your chances of winning
To carefully make the decision regarding applying for a grant, you should ask yourself these questions:
Am I eligible for the Grant?
Knowing the status of your eligibility for a grant is important. This would reduce your chances of experiencing disappointments. It also helps you decide whether the grant is worth your time and effort to apply.
Your eligibility status should answer the following status:
- Are you legal citizen of the country hosting such grants?
- Are there exceptions made for immigrants to partake in the grants?
- Do you have a back account?
- Can you apply in the language required for the grant?
- Are you the type of organization/person the grant is suited for?
Bottom line is, if you are not eligible, don’t apply. If you are, the organization/donor would then go ahead to review your application.
The next tip is to evaluate the grant. You do this by asking yourself this question:
Is the Grant a good fit for me?
You must carefully review the goals and objectives of the grant. If the grant is a agricultural-based organization, giving grants to small agro-business entrepreneurs. The question is now is are you into such field, or do you have knowledge of such field?
Knowing if the grant is a good fit for you saves you a lot of time and effort. This is because most times, the organization or individual would require you to provide evidence of your involvement in such area/field.
Other important criteria’s to look at is:
Your geographical location. Some organizations offer grant to a specific location or country, while those who claim to award grants to anywhere in the world, in reality don’t.
The goal of some donors is to support certain beneficiaries through the grants they are offering you. For example, an organization is giving out grants of $10,000 to individuals to start their own Agro-business. Their goal of doing this is to increase food production is such area or country.
The question now is, are you helping their beneficiaries as they want you to?
Do I have a chance of success?
There are more and more funding opportunities been published online, this is why you should consider applying to those you feel you stand a chance of winning following the above rules listed above.
Now for tips on how to increase your chances of winning a grant up to $100,000 follow as seen below:
1. Focus on their mission
Don’t align your business mission or goal to the grant’s mission or goal, apply only if the grant was specifically written for you. Most donors or organization offering grants denies an application with the slightest hint of unfitness.
2. Do Extensive Research
Identifying organizations, private foundations and individuals offering grants to small businesses, NGO’s, or individuals requires a lot of research and leg work.
This part is unavoidable. Places you can visit for such information are “The small Business Administration”, Foundation.org, Business.gov which is a U.S. government official website for small businesses.
3. Strategies your approach
Once you have identified your potential funders, strategize how you want to approach them. You can decide to make personal contacts, send an email, telephone call, etc.
There are certain things to take note of when approaching a donor for a grant.
4. Follow the rules/guidelines for the grant application
You can do this by requesting for a copy of the grant guidelines. Follow all the requirements of the grant to the letter.
Include all information/ documents needed for the grant into your application and more. Give the donor exactly what they asked for, no more no less.
5. Make you objectives clear and precise
During the course of writing our your proposal or application, let your objectives be clearly stated alongside other information requested for.
Your proposal should describe immediate short-term and long-term results, proposed implementation, personnel, expenses, methodology, etc.
6. State in details how you intend to spend the money
The grant donor needs to know how you intend to spend the money that would be given to you. Break down all expenses in details, leaving not out. All amount must be accounted for. Most grant donors get irritated when you over estimate (Trying to skim from them) or underestimate (Not enough knowledge on what you intend to do) costs.
Now that you have all this figured out, follow each step to increase your chances of winning a grant.