Government grants can be used for a variety of activities and projects. All business types, including nonprofit and faith-based organizations, as well as individuals are eligible for some type of government grant. The first step in applying for government grants is to find grant opportunities.
Federal government agencies and departments publish Notices of Funding Availability (NOFAs) in the Federal Register and on Grants.gov, the government’s online grant management portal. Most notices are also posted on the respective department’s websites. Once you locate appropriate grant opportunities, the next step is to make sure you meet the grant program’s eligibility requirements. To determine your eligibility, simple review the grant notice. It will clearly define eligible entities.
Government grants require high quality grant writing to be deemed responsive. Low quality grant submissions may not be reviewed because they do not meet required standards. Grant reviewers can give grant proposals that have grammatical errors and typos low scores causing them to receive insufficient points for funding approval.
Businesses are eligible for many types of government grants from research to development grants. These grants provide funding for the research design and prototype phases of projects. They can prove critical in meeting business expansion goals.
Individuals can also apply for government grants from several federal agencies and departments. These are primarily academic and research opportunities for instructors with formal research design and implementation experience. They are basically conducting research for the government since they have to meet address pre-established research topics to obtain the grants.
Nonprofit and faith-based organizations are encouraged to apply for many of the grant programs sponsored by the government. Generally, faith-based organizations cannot include religious education or activities in their program design if they want to receive federal grants. There are a few exceptions, but those tend to focus on religious research topics rather than service programs.
Many of the federal grant opportunities require strategic partnerships between applicants and community groups. This provides more expertise and reduces duplication in projects. Because government grant programs offer larger award amounts, the expectation is that more people will be served by the grant. Local organizations may not be prepared to serve larger client bases or geographic areas without the benefit of collaborating partners.
Grants from the government require significant monitoring and reporting during implementation. It is not unusual for government department staff to provide ongoing consultation to you during the implementation phase. In fact, depending on the program, government employees can be integrally involved in your project and its evaluation.