Understanding your project
The first step to when considering a grant application is to ensure that you know exactly what project or proposal involves. The acronym SMART can is a useful tool to be able to identify and communicate projects and proposals:
S – Specific
Make sure you know exactly what you want to achieve and why.
Specific details could include:
- Who will deliver the project?
- What will the project cost?
- Where will the project be delivered?
- Why is the project important and who will benefit?
M – Measurable
Define exactly what the outcome will be once the project is delivered.
It may be an economic, environmental, social or cultural outcome.
A – Achievable/Actionable
This is how the project will be undertaken, and who will be involved at what point in time. Developing a project plan will often assist in understanding this component, as will ensuring all parties involved are capable of delivering the project (eg capacity, skill set, availability).
R – Relevant
Identifying how the project meets a demonstrated need, or aligns with a strategy, of the funder.
T – Time Bound
This requires you to be clear about the timeframe over which the project will be delivered.
Getting your project ready for grants
- Identify the grant funding source.
- Determine your eligibility.
- Consider how the project aligns with the funder’s goals and objectives.
- Be able to succinctly communicate your project.
- Uniqueness – know what makes your project stand-out.
- Know what supporting documentation is required to submit the grant application, and planning ahead if documents are needed from other parties. This may include obtaining letters of support, in-kind contributions, quotes or cost estimates or concept designs/plans.
- Prepare a project plan, risk management plan and project budget.