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It should describe each step of your plan and organize your thinking. The outline is the plan you'll follow as you draft your proposal. Use the grantor's request for proposals RFP or criteria as the basis. The outline should follow, painstakingly, the sequence and terms prescribed by the grantor. Determine if your proposal is the type of project the grantor actually funds. Don't assume that just because there is a significant amount of money available, that they will fund just anything. You may have the very best purple widget in the world, but if the grant is only for the producers of red widgets, you won't get the grant.

How to write a research grant proposal step by step

Write the first draft. It doesn't have to look good, just get your ideas down on paper—you can polish them later. If you get stuck on one question, work on another one for a while. For example, if they're partial to environmental responsibility, and part of your project is using renewable resources for energy, make that stand out. Where appropriate, highlight your organization's partnerships with other groups. This builds credibility and legitimacy.

Some Essential Grant Writing Tips

Clearly lay out specific goals. Your grant proposal should describe what the money will be used for, and the clearer you are in describing your goals, the more likely the outcome of your proposal will be positive. Make it shine. Make sure the ideas are clear and the delivery concise.

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Read it out loud to see how it flows. You will probably need to rewrite a lot, and possibly will need to do so several times. Review your original summary. Make sure it exactly reflects the proposal you've actually written—your ideas might have changed! Review the proposal and the requirements. Before you proofread, read and re-read the requirements instructions carefully.

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Every grant has rules and procedures that must be followed exactly as written. Make sure your proposal has followed all the rules. Unlike employment applications, in which it sometimes pays to be original, grant committees have rules in place for a specific reason, and they expect them to be followed to the letter.

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To do otherwise may mean that your application will be disqualified before it ever gets read. Proofread carefully. Show the funding committee that you take the proposal seriously by carefully proofing your proposal for spelling, typing, and grammatical errors. Do a reality check. Have at least two other people outside of your organization or discipline read the proposal, and then ask them questions about your concept.


Define the project's budget. Don't guess about the numbers. Instead, take the time to research and evaluate the actual expenses you've got to manage.

Don't estimate. Use real numbers, not amounts that end in If a grant reviewer suspects that your financial sheet is not accurate, they don't have either the time or the inclination to do the research—you just lost the grant. Find out exactly what kind of equipment, labor, and anything else you are going to need, and exactly what the cost will be so you can spell it out in the proposal. Produce a budget summary. A budget summary is a document that summarizes personnel expenses by category such as salary and fringes, purchased services, supplies, occupancy related expenses, communications, travel, equipment, printing, capital, indirect costs, etc.

Grantors are more likely to consider proposals that show the applicant is also has a stake in the outcome. Do not use a line called "other expenses" unless you fully explain it. Create a budget justification.

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A budget justification provides numerical detail explaining how you arrived at the amounts in the summary. Show that your participation matters. Letters of support and newspaper articles document your success and your partnerships with other organizations, and go a long way toward establishing your validity. Add other documents as required. For example, a c 3 letter of tax-exemption; an audit or financial report, and a list of the board of directors.

Make a file with several copies of each, so you have them ready whenever you write a proposal. Add a cover letter. This should include a summary of your request, including the purpose of your project and the amount of money you are requesting. It should also list the contents of your proposal i. You should invest as much time and care in the cover letter as the other parts of the document.

Proofread everything—again. You may think the document has been thoroughly proofread, but do it again anyway. It's not unusual for a word to be misspelled and have nobody catch it. Keep a look out for small details, such as a "there" that should be "their," an "it's" that should be "its," or a word that is commonly misspelled. Double check everything. Make sure you answered all the questions and are sending all the required materials. Make a copy for your files. Grant writing for dummies by Beverly A. The grantseeker's guide to winning proposals edited by Judith Margolin and Elan K.

Grant proposal makeover : transform your request from no to yes by Cheryl A. Clarke and Susan P. Geever; traducido por Silvia R. The Foundation Center's guide to proposal writing by Jane C. Proposals that work : a guide for planning dissertations and grant proposals by Lawrence F.

How to Write a Grant Proposal

Like many grantmaking foundations, the Grants Department receives many more applications than it can fund. But there are a few things grant writers can do to ensure that their proposals make it to the top of the stack. Whether you are applying for grant funding from NEEF, or elsewhere, these tips will ensure that your proposal is in top shape.

The sage wisdom of your grade school teacher still applies--especially when crafting a grant application. At the W. Kellogg Foundation, eighty percent of the grant applications that come through the door are immediately rejected Dickey To avoid having your project proposal tossed aside, read the parameters of the grant carefully. Review the Request for Proposals. Are there geographic limits? Does your organization meet eligibility requirements? Does the timing make sense for your organization?