Grant application tips

Before applying for program

  • Check the closing date – do you have enough time to write your application and gather all the information needed.
  • Check the grant program’s eligibility criteria and guidelines to ensure that your organisation and your project are eligible.  If you are not sure, always give the organisation a call.
  • Make sure the grant covers the items that you want funded and only include items that are eligible for funding.
  • Be clear on what you want to achieve with the funds, how are you going to do it and why.

Writing your application

  • Don’t assume that the grantor knows anything about your organisation or your project, describe them well.
  • Always include who, what, where, when, why and enough information to give the assessor a really good idea of what your project is about.
  • Make sure you answer all the questions.
  • Try to choose a good name for your project – something that captures the assessor’s imagination is good.
  • The grant assessor will have many applications to read through – try to make yours interesting and include all the critical facts.
  • Use plain English and steer clear of jargon.
  • Always include any relevant statistics you have for your project and community.
  • Include any letters of support you have for your project.
  • Give your draft application to a colleague or someone who knows your project to read through and give feedback.
  • Include any plans for continuing your project after the grant, if applicable.

The budget

  • Check carefully what is required for the budget and ensure you include all information.  If you are not sure – ask.
  • Always check the requirements for quotes and include more than one if requested.
  • Include details of funding that you are applying for from other sources, or that you have already sourced.
  • Usually budget amounts are excluding GST but check the grant guidelines or application form.
  • Include the cost of a financial audit of the project expenditure if required and only if it is an eligible item for funding (usually this is only for larger grants – ask the grantor if you are not sure).

Before submitting your grant application 

  • Proofread your whole application.
  • Get a colleague or someone who doesn’t know your project well to read through your application so they can provide constructive feedback.
  • Always ensure that you have included all documentation required – many application forms have a checklist, make sure you have a tick against each item (or provide information as to why you haven’t).

And lastly

  • If you are not sure of anything, phone the funding organisation and talk to them – they will always help.