Sam Ashe-Edmunds reports:
"Grant writing is part art, part science. Therefore, it is very important that you know how to write a letter requesting funding from a foundation. You'll need to tug the [heartstrings] of potential funders, but you'll also need to prove your company or program deserves their money and will use it wisely. Savvy proposal writers know that talking about the potential donor is almost as important as talking about yourself. Research potential donors before you begin writing a grant letter...Visit the website of a potential donor. Look for their mission statement. The mission statement will tell you exactly why a company, foundation or association was founded. If you are...looking to fund a teen anti-drug program, you will be more likely to receive funds from an organization with a mission that includes helping youths than you will from one that focuses on a particular disease, an environmental cause or homeless animals. Search for any grant programs a potential donor has in place. Many for-profit corporations have general and/or specific grant programs. Look for forms or applications that need to be filled out in order for you to apply for a grant from this donor. Call the potential donor and ask the receptionist the name of the person who reviews requests for charitable donations so you can specifically address your letter to that person. You may find this information on the company's or organization's website...Format your letter using a business style, with the date, a space, the name of [the] person to whom you are writing, his title, the name of the entity and the address. Skip a line, then begin with the salutation, usually something like, 'Dear Mr. Smith.' Begin the letter with a question that relates to the potential donor's mission or grant purpose. Choose a question that makes the reader answer, 'Yes,' or 'No,' depending on what you want to accomplish with your question...Relate your organization's work to your question...Request specific funding for your program. Include the name of the program, the dates the funding will cover, the number of people the donation will affect and the amount you are seeking. Tell what the program is, rather than how you will manage it. Save the 'how' for an accompanying document, such as a more detailed budget. Include general data about the organization running the program, including a brief history to show stability or success, any media coverage you've received and a general budget. Include your [501(c)] status if you are a tax-exempt organization. Show any successes from your program...Mention other sources of funding for the program, or name other organizations who have donated funds to your organization in the past. Many donors want to see that others have found you worthy of receiving charitable funds...Close the letter by restating your reason for requesting the donation and relating it to the donor's goals...Finish by thanking the reader for considering your request. Use an ending such as, 'Best Regards,' or 'Sincerely Yours,' followed by several spaces, then your first and last name and title. Add a P.S. Many people read the P.S. of a one-page letter first, so put an important piece of information there to interest the potential donor in reading the letter. If your letter is more than one page, including a piece of information that will make the reader want more information may encourage him [to] visit your website or contact you."
Writing and editing can be pretty rigorous processes if you want to do them well, but that's what this page is here for. Check out the latest tips here.