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Sample Fundraising Introduction Letters

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					ABCs of Proposal Writing



        GOODCITY
      August 31, 2010
         6 to 8 pm
                                   Dr. Ileen E. Kelly
                        ikelly@goodcitychicago.org
                             773-473-4790, ext. 316
                               First Let’s Recap
                           Last Weeks – Session #1

                       First Question – Is Your House in order ??

                  STEPS TO TAKE WHEN STARTING A NON-PROFIT

Step 1:

 Vision
 Mission
 Name of organization
 Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN)
 Board of Directors
 Articles of Incorporation
 Register with State Attorney General as a Public Charity

Step 1 (a)
 Bylaws

Step 2

 Internal Revenue Service Application for Tax Exemption (501(c)(3))
The Sustainability Cycle


     Evaluating   Planning




     Reporting    Tracking
Step 1: Planning
                             • Setting service goals
                             • Grants calendar
   Evaluating   Planning
                             • Annual Fund
                             • Program planning
                             • Special events plans
                             • Technology Expansion


   Reporting
                  Tracking   The BUDGET is an
                             essential planning source
Step 1: Planning (con’t)

   Evaluating   Planning     • Strategic Plan
                             • Administrative Plan
                             • Communications Plan
                             • Marketing Plan
                             • Program planning

                  Tracking
   Reporting
                             The BUDGET is an
                             essential planning source
Step 2: Tracking
                           • Recording expenses
   Evaluating   Planning
                           • Recording donations
                           • People served
                           • Volunteers engaged
                           • Programs presented
                           • Proposals submitted
                           • Fundraising events
   Reporting    Tracking
                           Comparing all of these to
                           the BUDGET allows you
                           to keep score
Step 3: Reporting
                            • Monthly P&L
                            • Project reporting
   Evaluating   Planning
                            • Required reports to funders
                            • Newsletters
                            • Appeals
                            • Board presentations
                            • Dashboard reports on
                            progress
                 Tracking
  Reporting
                            The BUDGET provides a
                            frame for all of these and
                            more
The Sustainability Cycle


     Evaluating   Planning




     Reporting    Tracking
Step 4: Evaluating
                            • Did we meet our goals?

                            • A surplus or a deficit?
   Evaluating   Planning


                            • What changes are needed?

                            • Should we continue Program A?

                            • How should we plan for next
                            year?
                 Tracking
    Reporting
                            The BUDGET is the essential tool
                            to calculate
                            ROI!
The Sustainability Cycle

     Evaluating   Planning




     Reporting    Tracking




      Now Begins Your
     Search for Funding !!!
Current Funding Source(s)
         Budget Revenues


    Membership/Services     Board/Pledge




         Grants           Individual/Appeals




          Now Begins Your
        Search for Funding !!!
(Let’s Look at the Budget Template )
Current Funding Source(s)
        Budget - Expenses


       Transportation   Salaries/Benefits




         Supplies       Program Expenses




Review the Sample Fundraising Worksheet
Current Funding Source(s)
        Budget - Expenses


       Transportation   Salaries/Benefits




         Supplies       Program Expenses




Review the Sample Fundraising Worksheet
Funding Search




Cast the Net Work Sheet
ABCs of Proposal Writing

      GOODCITY
        LEARNING OBJECTIVES
       Participants will learn how to:
________________________________________
  • Understand what corporate and foundation
    funders are looking for in “partner” agencies.

  • Learn how to present an effective “case for
    support” to potential funders.

  • Recognize the importance of stating clear goals
    and objectives for their program or agency.
       WHAT FUNDERS LOOK FOR IN
       PROPOSAL CONSIDERATION:
________________________________________
  •   Is applicant a 501 (c)3               •   Many, not all, are paying attention
      organization?                             to diversity in terms of composition
                                                of staff and board.
  •   Is proposal within their giving
      priorities?                           •   Plans for continuation of project
                                                after termination of grant.
  •   Is the need statement compelling,
      clearly thought through, well-        •   Realistic objectives.
      documented with objective
      evidence?                             •   Appropriate budget.

  •   Organizational credibility in terms   •   Any unusually original
      of quality of service, caliber of         methodology – a decided plus!
      staff, financial management,
      reputation in the community,
      board involvement.                    •   Possibility of replication by others.
           THE BOTTOM LINE
________________________________________
  • Funders are looking for a good investment
    – they are buying social change.

  • Which agency, which program will get
    them the most social change for their
    money?
     FOUR TYPES OF PROPOSAL
________________________________________
    – Good Idea, Good Proposal


    – Good Idea, Bad Proposal


    – Bad Idea, Good Proposal


    – Bad Idea, Bad Proposal
                  FUNDAMENTALS
________________________________________
 1. All requests should be fundamentally founded in
   YOUR ORGANIZATION’S PRIORITIES, not
 those of a potential funder.

2. Grant Writing requires ETHICAL behavior:
  • You must be open and honest in all dealings with
  donors.
  • Your organization must use gifts for the purpose (s)
  the grantor intended.
  • You must provide accurate information to the donor
  about your organization.
   WHY PROPOSALS ARE DECLINED:
________________________________________

  1. The foundation simply cannot afford it.

   2. The proposal does not fit the funder’s guidelines
      or interests.

  3. The project/idea is of inferior quality.


  4. The proposal fits, but is not as promising as some of the
     competing applicants.

________________________________________
             THE PROCESS
_______________________________________
    1. Conduct preliminary research.
    2. Prioritize your prospects:
       • Lapsed Donors
       • Prospects with whom you have a connection
       • “Cold” prospects
       • Existing Donors
    3. Conduct in-depth research, (including calling
          for guidelines and application forms)

    4. Try to talk with the prospect before submitting
        the proposal or letter of inquiry.
    5. Follow the guidelines!!
          PROPOSAL OUTLINE
________________________________________
  •    Introduction – Request (the   • Evaluation
       ask) and organizational
       information
                                     • Cost/Itemized Budget
  •    Problem or Needs Statement

  •     Proposed Project             • Proposal Summary and
      –    Goals and Objectives        Grant Request
      –    Methodology
      –    Time Frame
                                     • Appendices
           INTRODUCTION
________________________________________
 States purpose of proposal (what you’re asking for)
 and establishes credibility and image of a well-
 managed organization which meets critical needs of
 its constituency.

 • The “Ask” – “This proposal requests a grant of
     $10,000 from the XYZ Foundation in support of
     the ABC agency’s 2010 Annual Fund.”
 • Who is the applicant organization.

 • Its history.
          INTRODUCTION (CONT.)
________________________________________
  • Significant events/track record.
  • Affiliations/accreditations/linkages.
  • Expertise in area of problem/need to be
    addressed through the grant.
  • Organizational structure.
  • Major sources of support.
  • Any uniqueness.
             STATEMENT OF
           PROBLEM OR NEED:
________________________________________
  • Reason for writing the       • Reasonable and
    proposal.                      achievable dimensions.
  • Condition or situation you   • Consequences of
    wish to change: scope          inaction.
    and magnitude,               • Stated with focus on
    demographic and                people to be served.
    geographic.                  • May be an opportunity to
  • Related to purposes and        be seized rather than a
    goals of the organization.     problem to be addressed.
  • Objective evidence of
    problem/need.
         PROJECT OVERVIEW
________________________________________
  Starts with a brief summary of how you
  propose to address the problem or need you
  have identified, then covers:

     • Goals and Objectives

     • Methodology
       GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
_______________________________________
      GOALS are global statements of long
      range benefits and tied to overall mission
      of the organization.

    EXAMPLE:
     • Reduce smoking among 6-8 graders at Welbourne School.

     • Increase literacy in the children of Humboldt Park.


     • Reduce incidence of domestic violence in South Shore.
    GOALS AND OBJECTIVES (CONT.)
________________________________________
 OBJECTIVES arise out of goals and provide a basis
 for evaluation.
   They are:


          • Measurable indicators of achievements or
            quantifiable outcome of the project.

         • Specific – define the target population to be served
           and when.

        • Specific – define the target population to be served
           and when.
    GOALS AND OBJECTIVES (CONT.)
________________________________________
  To define your objectives, ask questions as:
 • What will our target population learn/do/achieve as a
    result of this project?
  • What percentage success rate can we expect

  • What changes will occur in client attitudes and/or behaviors?

  •How will our services change?

  • How many or what percentage of our clients will participate in the activity?
     GOALS AND OBJECTIVES (CONT.)
________________________________________
      EXAMPLES OF OBJECTIVES:

 • By June 1, 2010, 70% of 8th graders at Welbourne School will
 state an intention not to smoke in the future.


 • After the project, 90% of law enforcement participants will be
 able to identify the signs of domestic violence.

 • Within 6 months of purchase of the new eye surgery
 equipment, mean time in surgery will be reduced by ½ hour.
       GOALS AND OBJECTIVES (CONT.)
________________________________________
Objectives may be:
 Short-term – for the immediate period; generally the end
  of the grant or project period.
   Example: 60% of nursing home residents who participated in the Tai Chi
   program will state an intention to continue with daily exercise program.

  Long-term – results achieved after the specified time frame and may
  require follow-up interventions and additional resources to achieve.

Example: Over the following year, there will be at least a 20% reduction in fall
incidence among nursing home residents who participate in a Tai Chi program.


                                           DO NOT CONFUSE OBJECTIVES WITH METHODOLOGY.
                         METHODOLOGY
________________________________________
  •   Includes specific activities which    • Includes only those activities
      must be performed to accomplish          critical to interpreting
      objectives.                              achievement of objectives.
  •   Indicates how objectives will be       Example:
      accomplished.
  •   Step-by-Step plan of action: who      • By December 1, 2010, the
      will do what, how, where and             community referral manual will
      when.                                    be completed.
  •   Includes credentials of key staff,    • Within 6 months after
      special qualifications or job            completion of the Stop
      description.                             Smoking program, the
  •   Any special rational for selection       instructor will have called all
      of unique methodology- has it            participants to ascertain
      been tested or will it be pioneered      smoking status.
      in this project?
                                            • In Month 3 of the project, a
                                               coordinator will be hired.
         METHODOLOGY (CONT.)
________________________________________
    Consider issues of ACCESS in your
    methodology section. For example:
    • From where will you recruit your clients?
    • How will your clients get to your program?
    • Will they be able to afford your program?
    • Is your location fully accessible?
    • Is it safe?

    • Is there transportation?

    • Is the program offered in all appropriate languages?
  ANNUAL FUND REQUEST PROJECT
              OVERVIEW
________________________________________

  •  Goals for the year.
  •  Brief program descriptions
  •  Include sample objectives
  •  Organizational issues such as change in
    leadership, new location, structural
    changes
  • General highlights
  • No methodology section
         PROJECT EVALUATION
________________________________________

  • How will you measure your objectives?

  • How will you measure your methodology?

  • Who will measure it?

  • May include instruments to be used
    (actual or projected).
            COST OF THE PROJECT
________________________________________
  • Summarizes itemized budget given on separate sheet.

  • States total cost of the project, amount to be contributed
    by applicant, amount and sources of funds already
    obtained, and amount to be raised.


  ITEMIZED BUDGET (attached separately)
    Includes:
              Expenses
              Income/Revenue
              In-kind contributions
         PROJECT SUMMARY AND
               REQUEST
_______________________________________

Reiterate ask amount.
 • Identify what the funder gets in return for its
   investments:
              Recognition
              Benefits (tangible and intangible)
              Partnership
 • “Thank you for your consideration of this request”
        OVERRIDING PRINCIPLES
________________________________________

  • Your proposal should be neat, clean and
    easy to read.
  • Do not use jargon.
  • Make it brief.
  • Be positive.
  • Avoid unsupported assumptions.
  • Have your grandmother read it!
            COVER LETTER
________________________________________
    • Provides opportunity for personalization.
    • Written on organization’s stationery.
    • Probably signed by top official.
    • Addressed to a specific person in the foundation or
      corporation.
    • Tells who is making the request, for what purpose and
      for what amount.
    • Gives name, title and telephone number of contact
      person.
    • May list enclosures.
                           Sample Opening:
“ Per our discussion, I am pleased to present the enclosed proposal requesting
a grant of $10,000 from the XYZ Foundation in support of the youth outreach
project of the ABC agency.”
                   PROPOSAL PACKAGE
________________________________________
  •   Cover Letter
  •   Full Proposal
  •   Requested Attachments:
       –   501 C 3 Letter from IRS
       –   Financial Statement
       –   Annual Report
       –   List of Board of Directors
       –   List of Major Donors
       –   List of grants for this project
       –   Brochures & Publications
       –   Newspaper clippings
       –   Letters of Support
       –   Other
          LETTER OF INQUIRY
________________________________________
  • Should be no more than 2 pages.
  • Is NOT a request for money, but a request for
    the opportunity to submit a proposal. However, it
    may include a dollar amount.
  • Should include
    –   Brief description of organization.
    –   Brief problem/needs statement.
    –   Brief summary of project.
    –   Overview of financial need.
    –   Recognition opportunities if significant.
           MANAGING THE PROCESS
________________________________________
  6. Set regular meetings with          1.   Start with a phone call or
      program staff to get internal          letter of inquiry.
      updates and prepare for grant     2.   Submit the proposal on time
      reports.                               with all appropriate
  7. Invite funder to key events,            materials.
      activities, performances,         3.   Follow-up in a polite and
      programs, etc., if appropriate.        reasonable manner!
  8. Submit reports on time and         4.   Acknowledge the gift
      provide promised recognition           immediately.
      and benefits.                     5.   Keep a “tickler” file for when
  9. Call funder immediately if              all grant reports are due.
      anything changes.
  10. Start talking about next
      request before this grant cycle
      is complete.
          HELPFUL “SYSTEMS”
________________________________________

  • Keep a proposal binder.
  • Establish a “tickler” file with grant reporting
    and application dates.
  • Maintain a “making the case” file.
  • Have all proposal inserts in one place and
    keep them up-to-date.
    IF THE ANSWER IS NO….
  What to do if a proposal is declined
1. Try to talk to your contact and determine.
  –  What are the specific reasons the proposal was
     declined?
  – What were the foundation/corporation’s reactions to
     the proposal and how could it be improved?
  – What is the process and timeline for reapplication to
     the prospect?
  – When would it be appropriate to reapply?
  – Are there other foundations or corporations that
     might be interested in your project or organization?
  2.Be tenacious
              Home Work
• Prepare Your Organizations Boiler Plate
• E-mail Your draft to me by Monday,
  September 6, 2010 – by 12 Noon

• ikelly@goodcitychicago.org
• If you already have a boiler plate,send me
  a draft.

				
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