Nothing beats a noble passion for helping and improving your community. You have found a community problem that needs a solution, and you found a potential person, can be a private or government organization, to support your project financially. A grant proposal is the first step you need to write. There are a number of grant proposal formats. Here are some of the steps to start grant proposal writing:
1. Why Your Project Is Important
Why does your project plan need funding? How will your project positively affect your community? These questions are very important so that the grantors can be convinced about your objectives for the community. Be clear and direct about the importance of your project.
2. Emphasize the Impacts of Your Project
What are the effects of your community project? Set a realistic project outcome. Make them specific. For example, your project is for helping children to learn to read, so the positive impact will be that the children will improve with their reading and comprehension skills.
3. Describe Solution
How will the problem be solved? List down the solutions to solving the problem. Keep them specific. For instance, your solution would be buying computers, buying other reading assistance software, and providing books.
4. Look for the Grantors or Know Your Potential Donors
You can research about the capabilities of your grantors. Research about their funding range and check if they could handle your budget. Is your budget enough or it is more than their range funding. Look for their mission and vision, and reflect them to yours, do you have the same vision and mission? Are you qualified for your grantors' requirements? According to the University of Wisconsin–Madison, "if an organization is submitting applications to already-established funders who know them well, they can expect for existing programs, high success rates, up to 90 percent."
5. Budget Estimation
Now that you know the needs of your project, it is important to start to estimate the budget. Only include the basic necessities for your project. Highlight the important expenses. The grantors will know if your budget is authentic; they have their own access to their research.
6. Edit Your Proposal
You should proofread everything you wrote in your professional proposal. You wouldn't want to have a number of errors in the proposal to keep it formal.
Make sure to be grateful for your grants, whether you received funds or not. Show gratitude to the grantors for giving you a chance to apply. You can review their comments in order for you to make a better grant proposal next time.