Five top tips to create a successful grant application

06 May 2021

Grant applications can be a great source of fundraising income for your church – and often provide the largest size of donation towards your project.

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Your application will need to be persuasive and show how the financial support will make a difference. Follow the five key principles below to create a strong application.

1. Be prepared

Before you starting applying for grants, it's important to be prepared and ensure the basics of your project are covered. Use our checklist for grant applications to make sure your church has considered the fundamentals, before you sit down to write any applications.

2. Well-thought-through proposals

Think through these points when pulling together a proposal:

  • Data

Data and statistics are key to highlight the need of your church’s project. There are lots of sources of potential data including your diocese, the Church Urban Fund or government deprivation statistics.

  • Partnerships

Funders like to see churches working in partnership with other organisations, and working with others can bring additional resource and expertise.

  • Community consultation

Community consultation events, focus groups and questionnaires are a great way to find out what local needs are. This is great evidence when applying for a grant as to why your project is needed.

3. Well written applications

The funder is unlikely to know your church and will make a judgment on what is written, so first impressions are important. Make the application easy to read and set out in a succinct and logical format. Be careful to avoid jargon – it can be extremely helpful to get someone unrelated to the project to proofread.

4. Well-rounded applications that include all the key information

Make sure your proposal has covered the key points including the need for the project, the solution your church is offering and what the outcomes will be. Our checklist for grant applications will help make sure you have the key information required ready.

5. Remain positive

Even if you receive a ‘no’ to your application, it may not mean ‘no’ forever. It's normal to get many ‘nos’ before you get a ‘yes’, so remain positive. An application to a well-researched grant funder is never wasted, especially if you receive feedback from the funder.

For more guidance on grant applications, watch our digital webinar where a fundraising expert shares their top tips for success