Hot Tips On Finding Public Money For Your Non Profit Or For Profit Business
As a working business or non-profit you should always be on the lookout for opportunities to receive grants. This article will serve as a general overview on how to locate and take advantage of this public money.
Who is Eligible?
Not all business are eligible. For federal grants you must be in a business that is “promoting the public good.” Non profits certainly fit that criteria. State and local governments have a wider range of acceptance but non profits are still a main beneficiary. If you are not sure if you qualify call up the program officer on the announcement to find out. Lastly, remember that once you receive the money you are typically limited in how you can spend it.
Where Should You Look?
Government websites such as grants.gov push out notices of available funding. You could also sign up for various e-newsletters that will alert you of grant opportunities. In addition to federal grants, state and local governments give out money as well. Search for your state’s grants online. For example if in PA go to newpa.com . Look for the RSS orange symbol stand that stands for Really Simple Syndication. I love sites that offer this. If you have a reader like Google Reader, every time the site is updated it kicks the feed to your reader. The advantage being you go to one place to pick up new and alerts from all the different websites like this one that may have posted a new article. For grants, these are invaluable tools because you don’t have to troll to 20 different sites one at a time to see what’s new. The 20 sites you subscribe to send their updates to you. Try it with our site. To sign up look on the top right corner of our home page where it says subscribe.
How to apply?
Applying is usually very basic. Give the details about your business, your goals, what you would use the money for, and other sources of financing. Federal apps require more paperwork such as a copy of the previous years financial audit and a statement about your accounting practices.
We recommend that you be specific. Back up your argument with research. Explain the good that will come from the money and use numbers to support your argument. “This money will lead to ___ more beds for the elderly” etc. Facts are the most important part of the application.
Who can help you?
Grant writers are available to help you with your application. Some charge a flat fee and some charge by the hour. These writers can cost several thousand dollars and unfortunately still have to be paid if you do not win the grant.
Be aware that scammers exist. Never pay a writer that wants a commission if your grant is approved or one that is promoting free money. Go to a professional and remember there is no reason to pay for information about the grants themselves because it is all obtainable online.
At Metropolitan Risk Advisory we can help you as well. We specialize in non profit insurance and risk management techniques that will lower your costs. Have an insurance question, or want a second opinion on how cost efficient your insurance program is? Call us for a free consultation and let us help you save thousands.