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How do I Choose the Best for Not-For-Profit Grants?

Jess Rhodes
Jess Rhodes

Choosing the best not-for-profit grants is an organizationally specific process that requires knowing what the grant money will be used for and why it is necessary. An understanding of organizational needs and offerings can help target the grant search amongst various grant-giving entities. Finding the most appropriate grant for your organization’s needs also requires an understanding of the grant’s intended purpose. Non-for-profit grants can be sought out from corporations and governmental entities as well as charities and foundations.

The first step in finding the best not-for-profit grants is understanding organizational need. Knowing how much money is needed and for what purpose that money is being used will help formulate a basic grant proposal. Some organizations work to write a grant proposal tailored specifically to the grant institution; this method has its benefits, but it is important to know the basic desires and goals of the project before beginning the application to be sure these goals can be realized.

Businesswoman talking on a mobile phone
Businesswoman talking on a mobile phone

The search for not-for-profit grants can be long and can involve various types of organizations or governmental groups. There are some databases that include various funding options, but there isn’t a single comprehensive database for all grant monies. In order to choose the best options, search for not-for-profit grants or supporting organizations that support your mission or project goals. For example if the grant money will be used to support youth education, search for grants that work to support youth education.

Once you have found a subset of grant opportunities that fit your mission and your goals, it can help to take the time to understand the grant-giving organizations and their requirements. Some grant givers do so with very few additional requirements besides the submission of a grant proposal. Others involve frequent updates, measurable progress, or adherence to certain rules and regulations. Ensure that the grant acceptance requirements fit your organization’s abilities and that the grant proposal includes the resources needed to complete these tasks.

Once the list of not-for-profit grants has been limited with these suggestions, the remaining grants should represent some of the best not-for-profit grant options for your purposes. Usually, the closer the missions and goals of the two parties intertwine, the more suited they are for each other. The next steps involve submitting a grant proposal and any additional items requested by the grant-giving organization.

Despite the various sources of grant money available to non-profits, the biggest source of funding comes from individual donations. Organizations might find it useful, therefore, to couple their grant applications with active efforts in individual grant solicitations. Individual givers may also have connections to other granting institutions, which can help your organization with the grant writing process.

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