Federal grants for women have generously been given
out to ensure that the many women, not only in the U.S but around the
world, are empowered in various fields. It is important to note,
however, that the grants have many specific requirements; you will not
get a grant just by virtue of being a woman, and it is unlikely that
you will get a grant that goes directly to you. Most grants go to
non-profit organizations that have services for the benefit of women.
Thousands of free federal grants are provided in a wide range of categories each year. These include education and training, mental health, housing and business development. To apply for a federal grant, it is important that a woman founded business or community organization is at least 3 to 5 years old with a track record of successful community partnerships. Once this exists, some important grant writing considerations need to be followed:
Think It Through
Applying for a grant and being a grantee are two different things. While the first may hold to be promising, the latter entails stiff monitoring of the federal government. This is especially true to grantees in the business category. Having been awarded a business grant, the grantees are expected to strictly adhere to federal requirements. This includes an annual federal audit and quarterly reports, among others. So before you rush on your application, think it through and ask yourself if you are ready to be subjected to the additional responsibilities that come with the grant.
Know the Grant Requirements
Requirements of federal grants vary from one to another. It is therefore important to know the requirements needed to be considered for a particular grant; such things may include geographic requirements, the number of people to be served, and experience needed.
Information about a particular grant will most likely include the instructions for application too. Read each instruction thoroughly and take note of important matters such as deadlines, word limits, or page numbers. Remember to carefully follow the instructions as the federal government is usually unforgiving to applications that do not conform to guidelines.
Research and Write Your Grant Application
Research is essential to strengthen your application. A well-researched and well-thought application gives a positive impression on the commitment and interest you have. If you stress the need for food pantries in your area, back it up with reliable information. Always be sure to include the expressed benefits to women in particular.
When solid facts have been gathered, start writing your grant application. You can either pay for a grant writer or do the writing yourself. Whichever way, remember to include all the essential information that will give your application an edge. If possible, use graphs, tables, or pie charts to visually demonstrate your points. These help in making your application more interesting as it breaks long narratives and present the information in a manner that may offer further clarification. Do not use unnecessary or overly descriptive language. Rather, be direct.
Edit and Proofread
Some federal grant applications can be as long as 30 to 40 pages.
Thus, careful editing is needed to make sure that your message is not
lost and that it looks and sounds professional. Check the spelling,
grammar, figures, even the font and font size you used. It will also
help to have someone else read through your grant application.
Finally, upon completion, submit your application either
electronically or personally. Take note that the feds are strict when
it comes to deadlines, so be sure to submit yours on time.
Women are continuing to stand up and break gender stereotypes. The federal government has been generous enough in providing opportunities for growth and development for the Eves out there. Since there are hundreds of Federal Grant Agencies, it is worth investigating whether an appropriate grant exists for your endeavor to further women's causes.