• Rachel Niemczyk

Is It A Trick? Nope! These Details Will Bring Your Nonprofit Funding Treats!

Text reading "Trick or Treat? Details for a funded grant this Halloween" between 2 cobwebs.

Figuring out what details to put in the application about your program can be one of the trickiest parts of grant writing. Too much detail and you’ll go over word/character limits or bore your grant reviewer (possibly even put them to sleep). Too little detail and they’ll be left wondering what on earth you were trying to say, and try to fill in the gaps themselves which is never a good thing.

So what details should go into your program narrative?

Well, obviously any information the funder asks for. If they ask for due dates you expect to complete each step by, then you give them due dates for each step of the program. If they ask for the demographics of your audience, you give them details on the demographics of your audience. If they ask for the impact you are trying to achieve you write all you can on the impact you’re trying to achieve.

But beyond this, you need to give enough detail that the funder can imagine the program playing out before them like a commercial.


Yes. Like a commercial.

Think about it. Commercials have extremely limited time to make sure you take away all the relevant information you need. They have to keep your attention, sell you something that may be entirely new to you within that time, give you a good enough reason to pick up your smart phone to learn more, and ensure you’ll remember it long enough and well enough to buy it long after you’ve seen the commercial. The same principle applies in grant writing.

You need to keep your reviewers’ attention, make sure the program information is easily understood, and make sure it’s memorable enough to stick in your reviewers head even if they’ve read countless more applications before and after yours.

This is why you should have all the program details figured out before applying for the grant. If you do, you’ll be able to easily add in details like:

  • Program participant demographics

  • Community need for your program

  • Where you got your data from

  • Days/hours of operation

  • Staff titles & roles

  • Supplies needed to run the program

  • Supplies you are asking this specific funder for

  • What a day in the program looks like

  • Partner/Collaborator names

  • Each partner/collaborator’s contribution to the program

  • How your community will learn the program is available to them

  • How you will track the impact your program makes

  • And more.

Details like these not only make your nonprofit seem super competent, prepared, and ready to implement the program, but they give you the elements for an interesting story that you can weave together to tell funders.

And because many nonprofits forget to add some (or most) of these details, if you can add them in your application you will stand out from the crowd.

What details do you make sure to include in your grant applications? How do you guarantee that you don’t accidentally miss one? Share your thoughts in the comments below so we can all learn from each other and support each other in the crazy world of grant writing.

Thanks for reading and I’ll see you next week with another article!

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