- The one tip on winning a grant revealed
- Many grant agencies will actually review your application
- AMAZING: Grant staffer will be at Southern Alberta grant writing course in August – register now for an amazing opportunity!! https://albertabusinessgrants.ca/grant-writing/
As I’m writing this post and staring outside of a coffee shop, I imagine all the grant agency staff and Albertans on vacation.
While all this well-deserved vacation is going on, I’m sure a tiny little voice speaks in most of their brains: money.
Don’t Wait! Download our "Three Steps to Winning a Government Grants" PDF here - http://albertabusinessgrants.ca/
And they should be aware of this fact: grant deadlines are closing like a freight train.
September and October are MASSIVE grant deadlines. The spring and fall are huge opportunities for winning a government grant.
Back to everyone on vacation.
While everyone is splishing and splashing in the water pool, people need to pay their bills for the remainder of the year. I’m speaking directly to business owners and non-profit executive directors right now.
#1 GRANT TIP: You need to start early to win grants – at least six weeks, but preferably eight.
Let me explain.
When you were in high school or university, you had a “deadline.”
Most people – sadly me included for my early years of university – waited until the last minute.
Check out my first-year grades: 1.6 GPA!!!
But this old dog can learn new tricks, and you can too.
GRANT TIP: You cannot write 98% of grants at the last minute because you usually need “attachments.”
Attachments can be letters of support or documents (i.e. quotes) from third parties. Trust me, few people want to deal with your grant crisis at 10pm the night before the application is due.
IF I CAN CHANGE, YOU CAN TOO
After completing second year with a 2.1 GPA (I needed a 2.0 or I “failed out”), I decided to take a semester off. I was working for minimum wage at the time, and I saved up all summer for third year university.
I remember going back to UNBSJ and walking around the halls.
I couldn’t study anymore. I just needed a break. I had taken FOUR years to get a THREE-year high school diploma, and I was struggling in school. I couldn’t write.
I remember the day like it was yesterday.
I picked up the pay phone in the gym building, and I called Travel Cuts – a student travel agency.
It was 1998.
“I need a break, where can I go,” I asked the guy on the phone.
“Ireland is booming, you should go there,” he said.
The trip was booked right there, and I was on a plane to Dublin with 400 pounds (about a thousand dollars) in my money belt. During that trip I worked security at an Irish Microsoft building, and I said “wow you have a lot of spare time in security. I am going to get a similar job in university and do my homework while I get paid.”
When I returned to school in December, I was a security guard at the Baxter Dairy’s milk plant. I worked 12pm to 12am every Saturday and Sunday for two years. My mother brought me meals, and I drank approximately 300 litres of chocolate milk. Delicious. It’s still the best chocolate milk on the planet.
But something happened. I started my essays and work EARLY! Look at the grade difference: My last 17 courses were all A- or higher!
I learned the discipline of writing: start early and get help.
Well turns out my career in grants IS THAT EXACT SAME THING!
MASSIVE GRANT TIP: Many grant agencies will review your grant application in advance if you have a relationship and get it to them EARLY! I have several clients who have had that happen, and you can too!
AUGUST GRANT WRITING CLASSES
As you can see in the images above, I found my passion in politics in government – the people responsible for giving out the grants (technically the grant agencies, but their masters are the politicians as it should be).
I told one of my mentors that I needed to have two grant writing courses in August: one in Edmonton and one in Calgary area.
He said, “are you crazy, most people are on vacation or tuned out.”
I said, “I know but the deadlines are in September and October. September is too late for starting grants!” If you’re going to win a grant in the fall, you need to start in August.”
CHECK THIS OUT.
I met with the awesome Chair of Volunteer Airdrie (VA), Dave Maffitt. Volunteer Airdrie is a great organization with a mission to empower Airdrie residents to invest in themselves and their community through volunteerism: http://www.volunteerairdrie.ca/index.htm.
VA is the grant writing event sponsor providing coffee and lunch. Dave also arranged for a grant agency staffer from Alberta Culture & Tourism CIP Grants to be guest grant judge! How amazing is that?!?! We’re going to try and get another two guest celebrity judges; I want someone from the business grant side as well.
If you read my blog regularly, you know that “meeting the grant agency” is a critical step in winning the grant. WOW! I’m blown away students will get this opportunity.
You’re going to get my feedback and a grant agency’s feedback during this event! That’s amazing! I’m so pumped!!!
ATTENTION ALL SOUTHERN ALBERTA GRANT SEEKERS. IF YOU WANT TO WIN A GRANT THIS FALL, YOU NEED TO REGISTER FOR THE ONE-DAY LIVE GRANT WRITING CLASS ON AUGUST 14. SIGN UP HERE: https://albertabusinessgrants.ca/grant-writing/ Tiny class so don’t wait another second!!!
Back to where we started. I know many people might not want to think about grants right now, but you should. Be prepared and start early to win a grant. My mission is to “demystify government grants for businesses and non-profit organizations.” You will be well on your way to winning a grant this fall if you start in August.
Have an awesome week!