Ten Hints for Grant Proposals

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Used with the approval of Brazos Transit Systems, 504 East 27th St., Bryan, TX 77803

Grants for meeting the needs of in-school populations are made available through a variety of local, state, and federal governmental sources. Private sector funds are often made available for special populations. This is a list of suggestions to guide you in developing a proposal.

  1. Read the Request for Proposal (RFP) thoroughly.
    This permits you to determine if you are eligible, if you can make all required assurances, and if it is worth your effort.
  2. Complete ALL parts of the RFP.
    The funding agency needs all information requested and you may be disqualified for failure to comply.
  3. Sell your project.
    You have a good idea but you must convince the funding agency of this.  Often you are in competition with other organizations for these dollars.  Don’t leave essential parts of your project unexplained.
  4. Be as brief as you can be.
    It is not necessary to build great mounds of documentation for the essential points of your project.  Clarify all major aspects of the project and eliminate unnecessary explanations.
  5. Establish worthwhile evaluation procedures.
    You must be able to define measurable results from your project.  The funding agency will insist that you effectively evaluate the worth of the venture upon completion.
  6. Be reasonable in your request.
    It is poor practice to encumber funds that will not be used.  Determine realistic needs and request funding sufficient to carry out the project.  Explain unusual requests.
  7. Establish a plan by which to amend budgets.
    Usually, you will be able to determine the need for amendment by the time the project time span is 25% to 50% complete.  Plan well in order to keep amendment requests at a minimum.
  8. Be prepared to do what you say you will do.
    Compliance monitors will evaluate you and your project on the basis of your commitment to performance in your proposal.  Be prepared to meet those commitments.
  9. Have a plan for project record keeping.
    Be sure that your organization has a system that will track performance in all aspects of the project.  Records are important to show that you have done the things which you promised and have spent grant dollars in an approved manner.
  10. Be prepared to send reports in a timely manner.
    The funding agency may require reports on a periodic basis or may need only a final report.  As you prepare your request for funding you must determine your process for reporting when the project is funded.

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