This is the pitfall of many grant applications. Question marks over your budget can be the difference between your application getting over the line and ending up in the bin. Assessment panels tend to go over budgets with a fine-tooth comb to ensure everything adds up and that they’re getting value for money.
Make sure you provide detail. For things like wages provide a breakdown of your calculations, e.g. $2,700 = 3 artist/facilitators x $50/hr x 3hrs/week x 6 weeks. Try to cost out other expenditure items like equipment so that your figures are realistic.
Columns with a series of identically round numbers are a giveaway that you haven’t taken the time to roughly cost out items. You might also want to consider not going for the full amount on offer through the grant program. Asking for what the project actually costs will work in your favour.
Be sure your project timeline aligns with the grant program. In most instances, grant money won’t come on-stream for several months after the submission date (if you’re successful).
You’ll be amazed at the errors that slip through to the keeper (repetition, spelling, grammar). Be sure to proofread your application before hitting ‘submit’. Better yet, get someone to proof it for you.
PROVIDE COMPELLING SUPPORT MATERIAL
Support letters from prospective participants are a great way to put a human voice/face to your project. Support letters from prospective partners evidence the strength of your partnerships. You might want to prepare support letter templates/outlines for your participants and partners to then personalize, to ensure basic information about their role in the project is effectively conveyed.
That’s it folks, go well and may the funding gods (bureaucrats) look favourably upon your projects.
Words by Ziyad Springborg.
Photo by Julia Mendel.