In our April blog series, we are focusing on “Helping Hands.” Last week, my colleague, Jennifer, perfectly explained how to track volunteer time and efforts and how to include these figures in grant budgets (click to read Jennifer's blog). Volunteers can add significant value to your project budgets and your agency’s bottom line, but did you know they can also leverage additional grant dollars for your organization? Let’s explore some of the strategies you can use to successfully in pursue volunteer grants.

Whew! That was quite the introductory period for this year’s ‘life’ subscription (i.e., January). I don’t know about everyone else, but I could use a quick moment to hit the metaphorical reset button. So, here are a few strategies you can use to help readjust, reset, and get ready to tackle February 2021 and beyond.

It’s January. Are you ready for a reset? Better yet, is your grant strategy ready for a reset? I am just hunching here but with a year like 2020, I think the answer may be “yes” (and probably in many more ways than just grants)!  There are many different tools and tactics to reset your grant strategy.

As grant professionals, many of us know that our workload tends to ease up a bit during the last month or two of the year. Yes, yes, the holidays are here as well, but this is no ordinary year (e.g., pandemic, racial tensions, etc.). What has felt to some people like a decade’s-long timespan (i.e. 2020), is FINALLY coming to an end. (Ok, ok. ‘Some people’ is me. I am ‘some people.’) But if you’re like me, you’re determined to remain cautiously optimistic about the upcoming year; having faith that things will ultimately be ok in the end. So, this is an ideal time to seize the moment and maximize your efficiency by preparing for the year to come. While there are many things a grant professional should do to be ready for an upcoming year, we’ll talk briefly about a few of the key ones.

Part 1- Accessing existing information The big question: What do you do when you identify a grant opportunity that requires discussion of how the project fits into the agency’s larger mission and/or existing needs assessments? This may initially cause concern and prevent an organization from pursuing the opportunity. The truth is there are likely existing documents within your organization and the community that may provide you with what you need.

There are lots of activities that can help a nonprofit organization become grant ready, and one of them is their internal roadmap of tasks that define their grants program. The purpose of these practices is to help ensure staff have a documented process that covers the A to Zs of a comprehensive grant program. Determining if a funder is right for your program If you happen to be in the dating “scene” in this highly digital age, it can be hard to determine from just an online profile whether you and a potential mate are going to be compatible. Or perhaps a friend or acquaintance has someone they want you to meet and claims they’d be perfect for you. As a grant writer, you might find yourself in a similar situation when you’ve found a funder online who seems to be a perfect match for the services at your nonprofit organization.