I’m applying for a grant that the nonprofit received last year.* I wrote last year’s grant, too. The easy thing would be to copy and paste last year’s information into this year’s application since little has changed in the foundation’s guidelines. Also, last year’s application worked, so why change it? This is the wrong thing to do.
A year has passed and progress has been made. (If no progress, then there are other issues to be fixed before asking for more money.) Also, the foundation members are likely to be the same people from last year reading the current application. If they read the same words, they could assume no progress had been made.
Each grant application should be treated as new and not a presentation of the same information. Not only has progress been made with the project, the world has changed economically and socially.
The one item to add in the current application is how the relationship between the nonprofit and foundation has developed positively since the previous funding was provided. Hint: The nonprofit should have taken the opportunity and developed a dialogue and relationship with the foundation.
There are some things that can be repeated in the application, such as the project title. Changing the title to make it seem new is never good. Some nonprofits do this since foundations may not fund the same project again. Be honest.
Also repeat the nonprofit’s mission statement. This provides a sense of consistency and sameness, along with assurance that the nonprofit is stable.
For this grant application, I’m using last year’s only as a guide. Having made progress on the project helps.
*Note: A report on spending all of the previous funding must have already been sent to the foundation.