Yesterday we had Tyler Chandler, the state director of After School All Stars, visit us as a guest speaker.
I learned about three different areas in writing in the non-profit world, that one can get into. The first area is, of course, writing grant proposals, which can be for programming grants (money that would come in to an organization to fund “hands on” work) or for capital grants (money that would come in for a new building or playground, etc.). The second area is in public relations and advertising, according to Tyler Chandler, non-profits are 50% what they do and 50% perception, which is why it’s critical that they look good in order to grow and continuously get funded. The third area is more technical writing for the organizations, such as programming and curriculum, to put in print exactly what and how they do.
Two things that I believe I can put into practice from what he said are to try to get grants that are for 3-5 years, in order to get sustainability, and to keep track of every single dime that would come from a grant proposal that I have written, because you and your organization will be held accountable by funders. Also, he mentioned how important it is for a grant writer to get involved and learn how their non-profit works so that they know exactly what they are talking about when writing a grant. I believe that was the most important take away from everything that he said. Knowing exactly what your organization does and needs makes for an efficient grant.