; Writing a funding application

 Writing a funding  application

Most funders operate an application process for their grants. Some give very clear guidance about what they fund and who is eligible to apply. Other may not be so clear or may run several grant schemes so you will need to check which of their schemes if the most suitable for you. Below are some general rules to remember when writing a funding application but always read any additional guidance provided by the funder.

If the funder requires you to write a letter rather than an application form and gives no further guidance, you can use the checklist in the Planning your bid section to structure your headings.

Finally, remember to make sure that you keep a copy of your application and any supporting documents. Also make sure that everyone named on your application and other key people in your group know about the project, as funders may wish to call or follow up on the application.

General Rules

  •   Give the funder what they are looking for - read the application from start to finish before starting to fill it in and be sure to follow the instructions carefully
  • Assume nothing and avoid jargon - assume the funder has no prior knowledge of your group, organisation or local area. Don't use acronyms and abbreviations.
  • Answer all questions asked - never ever leave a blank question on the form. If a question does not apply to your organisation, write 'N/A'.
  • Use the funder's language and be positive - use key 'buzzwords' from the guidelines in the application where you can but make sure they make sense.
  •  Be outcome focussed and use words like: 'increase', improve, reduce when describing the difference you want make with your project, as well as describing the activities you are going to deliver
  •  Keep focused - stay focused on your aims and your outcomes and make sure what you say is clear, concise and convincing.
  •  Get your application read - ask someone not associated with the project to read the application or letter when it's finished.
  • Type and do not hand write your applications, even if the rules allow it. It will always look more professional when typed neatly.
  •  Send all supporting documentation required (if asked). Funding applications can be immediately rejected if supporting documents are missing or incomplete.


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