How to prepare strong grant
proposals to compete effectively.
           Workshop Goals

To provide general tips for preparing strong application packages.

To provide an overview of general elements for successful proposals.

  To provide and discuss examples of strong and weak proposals.
   Do You Need to
       Write a
   Grant Proposal?

• Do you have the talent and materials within your partnership to
  complete the project?

• Could your problem be addressed by having local vendors
  provide materials or make other contributions?

• Could a community fundraiser fulfill your needs?

   If you answered yes to any of these questions …
   then you may NOT need to write a proposal. 
 Yes, I do need to write a grant
1. Begin researching funding sources
2. Collect materials to write your proposal

•Your mission/purpose
•Letters of support
•Budget estimates
•Project support
•IRS documentation

References and resources
to find external funding

                       How to work with funders
    External Funding Sources
•   State/Territory fish and wildlife agency
•   Federal government grants
•   Friends associations
•   Local businesses
•   Universities
•   Local conservation organizations
 Grant Funding Resource

• Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance

• Federal Register

• Grants.gov
          What is Grants.gov?
• A one-stop online shopping source to find and
  apply for Federal government-wide competitive
  grant opportunities
• Houses 900+ grant programs from 26 grant-
  making agencies
• Fund opportunities for more than 20 diverse grant
• Over 1,100 active grant opportunities posted
• Nearly 9000 grant applications submitted through
  the electronic system
Dummy bullet for transition
            Find and Apply
• “Find” feature allows users to:
   – Search for available grant opportunities
   – Register to receive notification of grant
• “Apply” feature allows users to:
   – Search for and download application packages
   – Complete application packages offline
   – Submit completed application packages online
   – Track the status of submitted applications
          Getting Started – Register
               with Grants.gov:
•   A multi-step process with time required between steps for
    verification, authentication and confirmation
     Grants.gov registration/authentication processes—allow 7-14 days!
    – Register with Central Contractor Registry (CCR) -
    – Register with the Credential Provider to receive
      username and password - Individuals
    – Register with Grants.gov to be designated as an
      Authorized Organization Representative - Individuals
    – Log in to Grants.gov to verify successful registration -
    – Download PureEdge viewer to be able to access and
      submit application materials - Individuals
         Help is available…
• Grants.gov provides numerous sources of help to
  guide you through the process
   – Online tutorials and training demos
   – Checklists and worksheets
   – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
   – User Guide
   – Help line – telephone and e-mail support
   Grant Funding Resources –
      Agency Information

• U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
  www.fws.gov (see “Grants at a Glance”)

• National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

• USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service
National Fish and Wildlife

            • www.nfwf.org
Other Types of Grants


          Foundations and
      Corporations $213 Billion
    Where the money comes from:         Where it goes:
                                        7% environmental
                                        and animal

                                        3% science and
 4% Corporations
12% Foundations
                                        25% education
                      76% Individuals
     8% Bequests
                                        65% other
Foundations and Corporations

        •   Give locally
        •   Don’t normally have applications
        •   Personal contact is required
        •   Fund very specific projects
        •   Give to non-profits
How Do we Find Foundations
    and Corporations?

         • Internet
           – Foundation Center Online
           – Conservation Grants
           – Environmental Grantmaking
             Foundations Directory

         • Libraries
           – Foundation Center Collections
           – Foundation searches, 990s
           – Chronicle of Philanthropy
         Does the Grant Opportunity
                Work for Me?

• Does your project meet the funder’s interest?
• Are you an eligible applicant?
• Does it support projects in your area?
• Does the funder support all project needs?
• What size grants are given?
• What is involved in the application process?
• What are the grant criteria?
• Does the timing of funding meet your needs?
          Budget Your Time

Solid partnerships               Communicate

Innovative                        Define your
  project                           budget

80% planning the project   20% writing the proposal
    Get the award for a strong
                 Pre-writing Phase

•   Do your homework
•   Know the big picture
•   Coordinate, establish partnerships
•   Communicate
•   Know the funder’s budget cycle
•   Determine how you will meet match
       Basic Grant Application
For a more competitive application be sure to

  – Detailed methodology/description of activity
  – Detailed Budget include how match funds are will be
  – Demonstrated partnerships with local communities
    and resource agencies
  – Relevant Principle investigator experience and
  – Description of how information from project will be
    used to improve management.
  – Realistic description timeline with benchmarks for
      Get the award for a strong
           proposal (cont)
                     Writing Phase
•   Follow grant application instructions
•   Be succinct, well organized, on time
•   Specify your piece of the pie
•   Target funding agency’s priorities
•   Set a realistic budget
•   Provide real, legitimate match
•   Be innovative
•   Work with a proofreader
        Grant Writing Tools –
        Agency Information

•   Updated Agency Websites
•   FWS/NCTC Grant Writing for Conservation Course
•   EPA Grant Writing Tutorial
•   NFWF Pre-proposal Form
•   NOAA Coastal Services Center
•   NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service
•   NOAA Grants Management Division
         Weak proposals
• Do not follow directions in the
• Are not proof read, have lots of
• Have incorrect or insufficient match
• Lack coordination and had
  duplication of activities.
• Are submitted after the deadline.
    Weak proposals (cont)

• Do not provide adequate
  description of PI’s relevant past
  experience or performance

• Demonstrate that work begins
  or is completed before the grant
  is to be awarded.
         Remember, Funders
           Are Partners!

•   Build a relationship
•   Be courteous
•   Respect their time
•   Know their interests
•   Discuss opportunities
•   Follow up
          What if You Don’t
           Get the Grant?

Follow up – ask:
   – Any hints to increase success next time?
   – Any other funders recommended?
You got the Grant!!!

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