Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Finding the Balance Between Need and Showing Competence

When writing a grant, you usually need to devote a section to making the case for your need for the grant. Most people really go overboard with this. They write about all the things they need to serve their clients well. They write about how needy their clients are. They produce all sorts of statistics to document just how much they need help.

The problem with going overboard in documenting your need for the grant is that you run the risk of looking incompetent. Your readers might start asking questions like this: If the situation is really that pathetic, how did you let it get this way? If you haven't solved it by now (in your organization's 30 years of business), why should anyone think you'll solve it with the addition of a three-year grant?

The trick is to accurately demonstrate your need for the grant while also demonstrating your capacity to manage the funds well and use the funds to make a real difference and improve the situation. It also helps to highlight some strengths on which you can build. Ideally, you'll be able to show how the funds you are requesting will enable you to leverage other resources to really make a difference.

It's a balancing act. Don't go too far in the direction of showing too much need, or you may end up without the funds to help you work toward a solution.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Absolute Genius...

About Creative Resources & Research

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Woodland, CA, United States
Creative Resources and Research is a consulting firm specializing in grant writing, grant seeking, program evaluation and professional development training. We have worked with hundreds of clients including public and private schools, school districts, universities, non-profit organizations, and social service agencies throughout California, securing over $155 million from federal, state and private foundation funding sources over the past decade. Our primary grant writers and program evaluators have over 50 years of combined experience in the education and social services fields. At CRR we prefer a personal approach to the clients we work with; by developing long term relationships, we are better suited to match client’s needs with available funding sources. We provide a variety of services to help assist you, including grant writing, evaluation consulting, professional development opportunities, and workshops.