Has a matching fund requirement ever prevented you from applying for a grant?
I was recently asked to help a nonprofit organization that was located in an affluent city and that was continually rejected by grantors when it sought funding to supplement its other revenues. The organization’s staff figured that potential funders had perceived the nonprofit as being as well off as the high-median-income city in which it was situated.
I recently met with a local foundation currently redesigning their community programs to include capacity building grants (also known as organizational effectiveness grants) to enhance the overall effectiveness of area nonprofits. The funder’s goal is to invest in the mission of local nonprofits to help ensure successful delivery of services to local communities and long-term sustainability of organizations. Through capacity building grants, the foundation is leveraging the impact of their philanthropic resources.
Economic challenges and increased competition for dwindling resources is motivating many nonprofits and public agencies to take a closer look at collaboration as a means of ensuring sustainability. Organizations are increasingly leveraging resources by forming partnerships with other agencies. Funders welcome strong collaborative efforts that include joint grant seeking that will result in strengthening organizational effectiveness, expanding reach, and implementing best practices in a cost-effective manner.
Small private foundation endowments grew by 10 percent in 2012
A Foundation Source study of 732 small U.S. private foundations (those with less than $50 million in assets) found that total assets grew from $1.9 billion in 2011 to $2.1 billion in 2012. Foundation giving grew by 9.2 percent. The $200 million increase in assets is attributed to a recovery in financial markets that allowed donors to increase contributions. The study’s data is considered reflective of the 98% of foundations with assets under $50 million. (The largest 2 percent of U.S. foundations hold nearly 70 percent of all foundation wealth.)
The players in the grants world include not only donors and recipients, but also collaborators. A couple weeks ago, eCivis contributor David Rappoport wrote about how private, public, and nonprofit/social sectors are blurring and how partnerships among sectors are increasingly expected by grant makers to make funding stretch further.
Top 10 lists are next to impossible not to click on. As a nutrition enthusiast, I can generally predict the items on a “Top 10 Superfoods” list before reading that type of article. But I’ll read anyhow, just to see if I agree with the author’s choices. (This can be a day-long debate if reading through Rolling Stone’s “Top 500 Songs of All Time.”) Inevitably these articles spur dialogue about whether and why certain items should or should not make the list. And that’s the purpose of these articles—to stir discussion.
So we encourage that kind of dialogue with our “10 Winning Tactics for Grant Writing.” It comes in the spirit of my article on the 5 Habits of Effective Grant Seekers, and we welcome feedback among new and returning visitors alike. Do you agree or disagree with our choices? What would you add or modify?