How to Have Your Grant Proposal Not Funded

Don’t ask for a specific amount of money.

Don’t have a board of directors that consists of a diverse group of professionals.

Don’t have a current budget in a generally accepted format.

Don’t have staff members with appropriate qualifications.

Don’t have measurable objectives.

Don’t collaborate with other organizations.

Don’t have recent, accurate financial statements in a generally accepted format.

Don’t complete a Form 990 for the previous year.

Don’t diversify your funding sources.

Don’t explain how your organization is sustainable.

Don’t give contact information for your organization.

Don’t have current and complete information on your website.

Don’t use clear and concise wording in your proposal.

Don’t adhere to funder’s guidelines.

Don’t require that all board members give dollars to your organization.

Don’t explain why your organization’s services are needed.

Don’t explain how your organization is going to try to resolve the issue you’re trying to address.

Don’t send a thank-you letter for a previous grant received.

Don’t track demographics of your clients – gender, ethnicity, and socio-economic classification.

Don’t have more than three board members.

Don’t ask for funding before the project or program has ended.

Don’t submit your proposal before the deadline.

Don’t submit any required report of spending for a previous grant received.


Recent grants received by our clients include:

$37,000 for an organization that provides gifts and wishes for children who are terminally ill with cancer – for general operating expenses

$30,000 for an agency with a mission to prevent homelessness and to stabilize those at risk in decent, affordable, and permanent housing, and to empower them to solve their own housing problems in the future - for general operating expenses

$25,000 for a clinic that provides medical, dental, and behavioral health services to low-income families - for health services to children

$20,000 for an educational and residential program for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities - for general operating expenses

$15,000 for a day school for severely developmentally disabled children and adults - for therapy and scholarships

$10,000 for an organization that meets the critical needs of homeless children - to purchase products for homeless children

$10,000 for an agency dedicated to the well-being and education of children from low-income families - $5,000 for a summer reading program and $5,000 for general operating expenses


Murray Covens, Principal

North Texas Nonprofit Resources