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.

This blog is a re-post from January, 2014.


Recent grants received by our clients include:

$30,000 for an agency that serves abused and neglected children – for a program that provides critically needed items for children who just that day have been removed from homes because of abuse or neglect

$25,000 for an alternative high school for youth who have struggled in a traditional high school - for a program for youth with learning disabilities

Murray Covens, Principal

North Texas Nonprofit Resources