What is grant fundraising like from the grant makers perspective?
Updated: Aug 11
Grant-making can feel a bit like a black hole. You spend time researching a funder, carefully crafting an application, then you send it off, and after three to six months, you either get a grant or a rejection slip.
But what happens to your application in between?
This month I had the privilege of interviewing Robin Peake from The Child's Charitable Trust.
Robin has a unique perspective because he is a highly accomplished fundraiser who recently became a grant-making trustee. Robin has seen both sides of the process and shares with us what makes a great application as well as lots of helpful insights.
You can watch this interview above or listen to it on Spotify (click here).
Some key insights that came from our interview with Robin:
Relationships matter - while grant writing is often a heavily written form of fundraising, trustees are human and more likely to favour applicants they know or have heard about before. Therefore, it is worth making an introductory call or citing in your application organisations or individuals linked to your project that the trustees might be more familiar with.
Clarity is key - do not assume any prior knowledge. Explain your organisation and project in simple, jargon-free, and easy-to-understand language.
Funders are on your side - we are all on the same page. We all want to make a difference in our society. Fundraisers and grant makers are two sides of the same coin. Show the funder how partnering with you can help them achieve their mission.
Cheesy tactics come across...well, cheesy - remember, whatever you write will be read by an actual human. Don't do anything that would make you roll your eyes if you were on the other side.
Don't bypass their processes - grant fundraising can be frustrating, and it can be tempting to find some backdoor into the funder. However, it does not come off well and risks alienating them. If a funder states a preferred way to receive applications, stick to it.
Robin's interview was packed with many helpful tips, so do check it out!