I wrote an earlier blog post about the relationship between a grant writer and a nonprofit. This time I’m writing about the relationship between a nonprofit and a foundation.
Whenever money is involved, relationships become more important than the money. Foundations want confidence nonprofits can spend money efficiently and effectively. Nonprofits need money to do this. Both sides should talk.
The nonprofit’s managers should take the first step and start a conversation by calling the foundation’s leadership. This should be done before any written grant request is submitted.
Starting a dialogue is not a problem when a nonprofit has stories to tell. Such as how they improved someone’s life. They can talk about documented results and plans for the future. Things stated in a written request, anyway.
This is what it’s about: people talking to each other. Many nonprofits write grant requests without ever talking to the foundation, hiding behind the submission process. Having a dialogue is a substantial bonus.
It gives the nonprofit’s managers a more personal way of telling who they are, what they are about, and why they want to help people. However, at this time they should not talk about the money.
That is only for the written grant request. Conversations are about building a relationship, which should lead eventually to a visit between the two organizations.
Whether the nonprofit’s managers talk to the foundation’s leadership or not, I always try to talk to the foundation’s staff before applying for a grant. I have had some great conversations that were very helpful in writing the grant request.
Nonprofits and foundations should talk to each other to get a better understanding of each other’s needs. This so they can continue succeeding.
P.S. which cow is the nonprofit and which is the foundation?