Government grants are awards of financial assistance to an individual and/or organization. Grants are used to carry out a government authorized purpose, and are not provided as personal benefits or assistance.
That is money awarded to finance a particular activity or facility. Federal agencies and other organizations sponsor grant programs for various reasons. Most grants are the result of an identified need. A public or private entity often appropriates funds to develop resources, conduct research or support existing services or projects.
Grantors usually distribute funds through solicitations such as Request for Proposals (RFP), concept papers, or grant announcements and bidding processes. Review committees read, score, and make recommendations for funding. In allocating funds, grant makers or grantors base their approval on the applicant’s ability to fit its proposed activities within the grant maker's interest areas.
Most grants fall into these categories.
- Federal and state agencies make government grants through legislative appropriations.
- Private grants generally come from foundations and private organizations and businesses.
- Businesses make corporate grants that serve the general community, such as banks that offer grants to enhance the community in some way.
- Individuals submit a grant on their behalf, and not on behalf of a company, organization, institution, or government. Individuals sign the grant application and its associated certifications and assurances that are necessary to fulfill the requirements of the application process. So, if you register as an Individual, you will only be able to apply to grant opportunities that are open to individuals. An individual cannot submit a grant application to a grant opportunity that is just open to organizations.
GRANT APPLICATION STRATEGEMS
Each type of grant has different grant processes, different requirements and different review processes. There is also a different focus or purpose depending on the funding agency. Corporations give money for a variety of reasons ranging from tax shields to public relations. Since grant making is optional for these businesses, it helps to show how your organization will be beneficial to them when developing your grant proposal. Foundations and government agencies, on the other hand, are mandated to give. A foundation must donate a percentage of its assets every year to avoid tax complications. It is best to read a foundation’s annual report and observe the pattern of giving before tailoring a proposal that enhances or compliments the foundation's special areas of interest. Government agencies, from local to federal levels, are designed with rigid guidelines, deadlines, and restrictions.
These grant applications are often very detailed and complicated, so you must pay close attention to all instructions to increase your chances of being approved. It is also a good idea to study the language of the legislation that organized the proposal and then mirror the terminology when you draft the proposal.