Nonprofit Services -

Introduction to Grants

Steps for Grant Seekers:

  1. Is a Grant Right for your organization? First, decide if your organization is ready for a grant and learn more about the grant making process:

    Foundation Center: Guide to Funding Research
    Learn about the grant making process, who gives to Nonprofits, what is their selection criteria, and how to create a prospecting list. Also learn more about Foundation Center's publications, many of which the library owns.
    http://fdncenter.org/getstarted/tutorials/gfr/initial.html

    Tucson-Pima Public Library (Arizona): "Fit-Funding Match" http://www.library.pima.gov/grants/grantsfitfunding.php

  2. Decide on the approach:
    The next step is to decide where you should go to get the funding, for what programs, and how to find out about funding opportunities. There are many different types of grants: Federal, State, Foundation, and Corporate: follow the links below to explore the similarities, differences between them and where to go to search for the funding opportunities.  

  3. Do your Homework!:
    In order to approach grant makers you need to develop your case to show your need for funding. If you need help on finding statistics and research information, try the links in the community analysis section.
    -- see Community Information
    Then develop a list of possible funders by searching business and grant making databases.
    -- see Business & Nonprofit Databases
    Finally, when you compile a list of funders that match your organization's criteria, continue with further research on your prospect to make sure your organization and theirs is a match.
    -- see Prospecting

  4. Writing the Grant Proposal:
    There are many sites and books that show how to write a grant proposal. If you have already developed your case, then putting a proposal together is much easier. Just a note, writing and sending a proposal will still not guarantee a grant. Successful grant writers network to connect with their intended funders, so pick up the phone and call them!

Book Resources:

Browning, Beverly A. Perfect phrases for writing grant proposals : hundreds of ready-to-use phrases to presentyour organization, explain your cause, and get the funding you need.
-- NP 658.15224 Browning

Carlson, Mim. Winning grants step by step : the complete workbook for planning, developing, writing, successful proposals.
-- 658.15224 Carlson (MK)

Foundation Center. The Foundation Center's guide to winning proposals.
-- NP 658.15224 Foundation

Foundation Center. The Foundation Center's guide to proposal writing.
-- NP 658.15224 Foundation

Smith, Nancy Burke. The everything grant writing book : create the perfect proposal to raise the funds you need.
-- NP 658.15224 Smith

Web Resources:

Foundation Center: (Course on Proposal Writing)
http://foundationcenter.org/getstarted/tutorials/shortcourse/index.html

Economic Research Institute: (990 access)
http://www.eri-nonprofit-salaries.com

Environmental Protection Agency:
http://www.epa.gov/epahome/grants.htm

National Institutes of Health and Extramural Research:
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/grant_tips.htm

Nonprofit Guides:
http://www.npguides.org/