Grants Explained - Demystifying Grants

In this section:

  • What is a grant?
  • What does this mean for your project?
  • What types of grants are available
  • A grant or a donation?
  • Looking for inspiration?
  • Where to look for a grant
  • Grants as investments in results

Welcome to Grants Basics. This section is for you if you are wondering what grants are and where to start looking. This overview explains what grants are and what types of grants are available. If you have a grant in mind and looking for support in putting your application together go to DIY Grant Writing or Grant Writer Services or arrange an Ideas Discovery Call.

Before we start, here are some things you should know about:

Imagine you are a government department, and you have a 3-5 year plan. There are some things you want to achieve. You have the money, but you do not have the grass roots expertise on the ground. You put a proposition out to a targeted range of organisation types that you will fund some new activities that help you to deliver those achievements. In simple terms, you are offering grants to deliver project ideas that have the potential to get the results you are looking for.

Likewise you are a charitable foundation, and you have some priority social justice goals. You have funds to disperse for the purpose of achieving those goals. Sound familiar?

This means that when you apply, your pitch must focus on how what you want to do will help the funder achieve the results they are looking for.

The article “Grants are not the only way” explores what kinds of activities are likely to get funded and identifies
an alternative need which people confuse with wanting a grant – to improve their marketing to generate income.

Are you really looking for a grant or need marketing support?
Not sure, then read this.

There are some activities that don’t fall into the category of a grant. Grants are normally based on project plans with a start, middle and an end outcome. Many charities, for example, are looking for generic support or resources. These could be classified as ‘donations’ and many funders do not consider these eligible for grant funding. Activities such as camps and holidays may be difficult to get funded  when they are not seen as innovative projects that lead to positive change for participants.

Most of the time, a grant is for a specific project. Even if it is for a piece of equipment, it is still considered a project. The process must have a beginning, middle and an end. If you are looking for funding for general activities that cannot be packaged into a project, most of the time, there are no grants. However, sometimes there are grants available to support administration activities to keep the doors open, mostly for small not-for-profits.

For more information about grants and how they work, watch Grants Demystified, which covers:

  • What types of grants are available
  • Where to look
  • What’s coming next
  • What you should know

What types of grants are available?

There are grants available for a lot of business and community activities, including:

For businesses

For not-for-profits

✓  Start-up (warning –some funders prefer to contract mentors as the value-for-money risk is high – many businesses do not make the three-year mark)

✓  Capacity building

✓  Infrastructure

✓  Research and development

✓  Commercialisation

✓  Innovation, especially in targeted growth industries

✓  Jobs

Including sports clubs, arts organisations, environmental groups, charities, community groups, associations:

✓  Capacity building

✓  Infrastructure

✓  Innovation

✓  Programs (social, cultural, environmental)

✓  Volunteer support

✓  Sector specific

Looking for inspiration?

View or download          

World of grants summary with examples. You would be surprised at how many grants there are out there for even the more obscure activities.

The million dollar project

Imagine a seed of an idea that attracts funding for a start up activity that then leads to a bigger project and consequently a much larger concept and it keeps on growing. Watch this story of how one client attracted over $1,000,000 in funding over 3-4 years. If they can do it, so can you.

Grants as investments in results

Instead of looking at grants as a means to filling gaps in your budget. Come at a grant as an investment to help you achieve results. After all, this is what the funder is doing.

Where to look for a grant

Ready to explore suitable grants?  Follow the link to Exploring Grants.

Ideas Discovery Call

Got a great idea and wondering whether it would fit a grant? To discuss your idea with us, book an appointment for a free 30 minute discovery call.