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Some top tips in crafting a  Project (grant) proposal

Cover letter 

People need to be inspired by a vision.


Write this at the end – repeat your best content

About the applicant

Don’t assume that the funder will have any knowledge of your initiative

Problem definition-justification

The power of evidence of need. it is not sufficient to say: “we  know … we think….” back   it up with relevant research

Target group/beneficiaries

Who benefits most from the project?  Align to funder target groups – research and repeat.

Typical Project (grant) proposal elements


Focus on impact – see example to follow

Activities and Methodology- Time Plan

Important to show your capacity to deliver

Evaluation (success measuring)

Shows you are serious about tracking your progress and achieving success


Important to show the funder investment in you will have a lasting legacy


A balance between getting enough resources to deliver the project and showing great value for money


Letters of support, the evidence of need report, financial info

Focus on Problem Solving. How will this grant tackle a challenge?

Problem statement – why is your project important? Justified? What problem does it solve?

How did you find out about the problem, what’s the research, statistics?

Multiple problems? Prioritize and choose!

What are the causes, solutions?  Final solution.  Evidence is the difference in success and failure

Objectives, Expected Results

Overall objective:

long-term changes

Specific objectives:

reachable, specific, clear

Services or products

that will become available to beneficiaries

Even more specific

than the specific objectives


materials printed, people educated, outputs created, events attended

Budget: know your finances

  • Prepare your budget
  • Quotations and tender process
  • Know your people costs
  • Know your overhead costs
  • Calculate volunteer contributions
  • Have your last year’s accounts ready?
  • Financial projections – if needed, get a financial mentor or a volunteer to help

Sustainability – an opportunity to shine

  • How will impact continue?
  • Risks (internal, external)


  • monitoring
  • evaluation
  • reporting

TIP – Usually applicants do not give this section enough attention

Whatever format funding, there is a moment when you will need to present your idea and ask for support. The better your presentation, your pitch, the better the chances are to be granted the funding and get the support you need.

Pitch deck is a set of free templates easily accessible on, easily adaptable. They can be adapted to anyone’s needs, to pitch a business idea/project for potential funders.

Some Top Tips: Try a Pitch Deck

A pitch deck is a brief presentation, often created using PowerPoint, Keynote or Prezi, and this time we chose Canva, used to provide your audience with a quick overview of your business plan. You will usually use your pitch deck during face-to-face or online meetings with potential investors, customers, partners, and co-founders.

Some top tips

  • Don’t assume that the funder will have any knowledge of your mediation initiative/advocacy, or background. Describe your project truthfully and fully
  • Break down the requirements of the application into bite-sized pieces
  • Think carefully about presentation; most funders will read many applications and if an application is easy to read and well presented it makes their lives easier
  • Do not over-promise – you will one day have to deliver
  • It always takes a lot longer to put an application for funds together than you think!
  • Remember it is competitive – your best foot forward
  • Write in an interesting way that captures the energy & spirit of your project (journalist style)
  • The power of evidence of need. It is not sufficient to say: “we know … we think….” back it up with relevant research
  • Show that your project is additional – not competing with others
  • And last, but not least, definitely talk to the funding agency before you apply