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:

$58,000 for a food pantry - for general operating expenses

$25,500 for a mental health advocacy organization - for a program that teaches children how to avoid victimization

$25,000 for a domestic violence agency - for their emergency care program

$20,000 for an organization that provides program for children who are terminally ill with cancer - $14,500 for last wishes, and $5,500 for general operating expenses

$20,000 for an organization that offers a summer life skills camp for children with diabetes - for financial assistance for children from low-income families

Murray Covens, Principal

North Texas Nonprofit Resources