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The sustainable nonprofit: Writing a grant proposal for community members

July 08, 2022

Diverse_women_GettyImagesDid you know that today, more grantmakers are bringing in local community members to review proposals with the aim of making the grant review process more equitable and inclusive? A 2021 study by the Center for Effective Philanthropy noted that in the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, 94 percent of funders simplified applications and reporting requirements and provided unrestricted and multiyear grants. And 75 percent maintained those changes in 2021. As trust-based philanthropy takes root, the process will not only become more streamlined  but also emphasize “listening to the community.”

Here are some tips for writing a grant proposal for a diverse, community-based audience—in other words, how to write a proposal for readers who may know nothing about your organization or project. The answer is in the six Cs of communication–clarity, cohesiveness, completeness, conciseness, concreteness, and context....

Read the full column article by Allison Shirk, a grantwriting professor at Western Washington University and Seattle Central College and founder of Spark the Fire Grantwriting Classes 

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