Grant Writing Advice and Tips: The Grant Helpers Blog

Ask the Grant Helpers

Posted by Michelle Hansen on Thu, Oct 23, 2014 @ 09:10 AM

Every day that we have interactions with our clients and readers there arequestion new questions about grant funding. Below are some questions that have been posed to us lately, with responses. We hope this information will give you some insight on the grant world as well as our company.

Don’t see your question below? Our Grant Helpers, including experts in municipalities, non-profits, and education, are always available to answer your questions. Contact us today. Remember, the first consultation is always free.

Why is it advantageous to hire a professional grant writer?

Where do we start? Our staff has years of experience working in the grant world, including finding appropriate grants, helping build strong funding strategies and efforts over time, writing grants, developing programs designed to be funded by grants, creating budgets, connecting partners, proofing and editing grants, and doing everything in between. We have built relationships with funders, and have experience navigating complicated grant applications so you don’t have to. Additionally, we subscribe to numerous grant services which constantly update us with upcoming grant opportunities.

Do you offer presentations to help our employees with grants?

Yes! We presented at the Siemens ITS National Distributor Sales Meeting, with strategies and approaches for funding Intelligent Traffic Systems through various grant channels. In addition, TheGrantHelpers.com founder Roland Garton presented a live webinar sponsored by Siemens, especially for those interested in grant funding and Intelligent Traffic Systems titled “Grant Resources for Funding your Next Traffic Project: Initial Strategies and Tactics.” Roland and our municipal specialist Rebecca Motley also recently presented at the Illinois Municipal League Conference. "Grants for Municipalities: Find, Align, and Get ’Em to Sign” helped attendees identify resources, develop fundable programming, and identify ways to increase the chances for funding. Materials from these presentations are available on request.

What do we do if our first grant application doesn’t get funded?

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Many times successful funding requires multiple submissions. The best odds for funding rise from a long-term, well-considered, systematic effort over time. You can learn a lot from reviewers’ comments to build stronger proposals over all.  Also, you can build up a body of support materials and tools to reduce time spent working on any individual proposal.  We can help organize these types of long-term efforts.

Do you guarantee funding?

With proposals, there are no guarantees.  We can help put you in the best situation to find grant money; we can’t guarantee that a given funding agency will consider your proposed project a match for its top funding priorities.

Can for-profit businesses receive grants?

Grants for for-profit companies are rare except in a few sectors such as research and development for technology innovation, education, environment, and certain social causes. There are, however, programs that provide low interest loans, etc. for businesses. We have collected information on these programs and published them on our website http://www.thegranthelpers.com/business-grants/

Is there money available for operational costs?

In the past, most grant money was slated for programming costs. Grant foundations are now sometimes including operational costs as part of their funding areas. This is a welcome switch for organizations that have received grants to build up their programs only to have trouble supporting their overhead costs.

What’s the best place to get started?

Give us a call or send an email. Schedule a consult. Tell us about your priorities. We can advise on which directions might be best, at no charge.

Our grant opportunity search is another good place for those just starting the grant search. It’s a low-cost, low-risk way to find out if your programs or projects are fundable. We'll perform an initial Fundability Evaluation at no charge to ensure there are grants available for your organization and get to know your organization and its funding needs. We'll then search for grants and produce a Grant Opportunity Review with at least three different grant opportunities for which your organization can apply. Interested? Contact us for more information and pricing.

 

Photo Credit: cesar bojorquez

Topics: Siemens ITS, grant services, grant writing hints, grant writing help, ask a granthelper, grant readiness, grant strategy, grant tips, grant hints, questions and answers