New Career, Grant Writing

What kind of a person gets into grant writing? A friendly, well organized, personable writer. A person with a computer and access to high speed Internet. A detail oriented person. You can do this! And the fun of it is there is more than one way to do it! You can either get on staff of a non-profit (501 c 3) organization and write grants exclusively for them, or you can free lance it.

The pros of working with one company, are you can really get passionate about their particular cause. Over the years you can get more and more fine turned and detailed about where you submit for funding. You will have the security of a regular paycheck, probably a nice workspace, and some great co-workers. Sometimes it's lonely to free-lance it at home. The down side is, these positions are harder to find. Especially with out a resume showing funded grants it may be a hard business to break into. You won't make as much as if you go free lance.

The pros of working for yourself are, you can take off that "home office" on your taxes, along with printer ink and Internet connection, and all other business related expense. You will probably make more money. You can make your own hours, you don't have to necessarily get dressed up every morning. You can get passionate about any number of causes that touch your heart or pay you well.

Probably the easiest part of the job is finding the grants. Sign up for or register with websites such as and to receive daily e-mails of available money. From there you can use search engines as well as embedded links from those two sites to find more and more sites. I also recommend books from on grant writing, to keep around as references.

The harder part would be finding acceptable clients. I'm everyone would love to have free money, but not every organization is entitled to it. Grass roots organizations, loose co-ops, parent groups, and volunteer committees usually are not eligible for grants. Most grant money goes to established 501 (c) 3 organizations, although some is given to individuals.

Not all non-profits are alike. The ones who are the most successful in receiving money are the established, well organized, passionate ones with hard data on their budgets and programs, well defined mission statements. IF you can prove for example, how many adults were taught to read in the last year by your organization and include that data in your submission, you have a better chance of winning money – than if you abruptly decide to start remedial reading classes in the hopes of qualifying for stimulus package funds.

So find yourself good clients. Trust me, the bad ones will blame you for not submitting correctly, in a timely manner or some other non-sense. No matter how broke you are, you don't have time to waste on a proposal that will not get funded because the organization is junk.