After the tedious processes of grant proposal writing and submitting, here comes the part when you have to sit back and wait for the decisive moment. You patiently wait hoping that your project will earn the favors of the funding officer. Then all of a sudden, the truth hit you: the funding officers just rejected your proposal.
Enough of the sour grapping as it will do you no good. As the number of nonprofits and causes are sprouting every minute, it also increases the competition among grant seekers. While you might have a good one at hand, there is a chance that someone out there has a better proposal than yours.
What can I Do?
Now, don’t be upset. Instead of sulking and crying over your rejected proposal, you can always try to submit your grant proposal to the same foundation on their next grant cycle (that is, if they allow re-applying). Here are some things that you can think about while waiting for the next funding cycle:
1. Be optimistic.
When your proposal is rejected, it doesn’t mean that you may no longer apply or your work is pure rubbish. Many factors can affect the decision of a funding officer. For instance, they have pledges prior to your application that need to be funded or their treasury is low and needs to be replenished before granting new proposals.
But if you know that the firm is in good status and as far as you know, they have no pending pledges, you can always ask. Yes, it’s fine to do that as long as you are courteous when asking. Try to note down their reasons and consider them as you revise your work.
2. Be realistic.
Research whether the grants donors whom you have submitted your grant proposal accepts project like yours. If they don’t give to your cause or they are at the verge of a being financially strained, then most likely they won’t fund grants right now.
3. Learn to prioritize.
After being rejected, you have to again start looking for grant donors that will support your cause. Now, while researching for funders, select donors that have higher chances of giving to your cause. You can base your selection whether that donor gives to non-profits in your state/geographic area; the cause that you are working on; and if their grant range fits with your need or funding. Focus first on your priority list before submitting a request to other funders.
4. Apply to as many grant donors as you can.
When applying for grants, do not “assume” that you will get the funding that you need. Yes, there are instances wherein you can receive funding. But it may be somehow less than the amount requested. By submitting your proposal to a number of grant donors, there are higher chances that you will get enough the funds for your cause.
5. You’re not alone.
When you are rejected, don’t act as if you’re the only one who’s suffering from proposal rejection. Take it easy. Grant donors can’t give to all nonprofits that come knocking at their doors, there is really a huge possibility that you will get your proposal rejected.
7. Contact colleagues and ask for leads.
Do communicate with your colleagues who are working for other agencies and organizations and ask for leads on associations and donors that give grants now. Share info about funders that will be interested in their causes. By creating a two-way communication, both parties benefit from one another. This is a good way of gathering info on prospective funders, not to mention establishing rapport and professional network among organizations.
8. Open up, listen, and communicate.
Applying for a grant is a continuous process of application and funding, you are given the chance to learn new things, improve your proposal, and get higher grant money for the coming years. The key here is constant communication with your donor and with other funding organizations and nonprofits.
Just continue applying for funding and modifying your grant proposal to serve its purpose of reaching donors and proving that your firm is able to handle such project. Never give up because although there is a concept of “failure,” it is just the first step preparing you to succeed in your coming endeavors. AlliedGrantWriters is just here to help you with grant writing.