A donation or grant request should not be of pure hope; there should be some calculated science behind these requests. Prior to asking for money, you need to understand how much to ask for and how to make it happen; it’s all about effective preparation, which can be accomplished in three steps.
Step 1: Do Your Research
When Asking for a Donation…
- Gather names of individuals likely to donate.
- Estimate the amount they may be capable of donating and their interest level.
- Find people who are familiar with each prospective donor, and request an introduction.
When Asking for a Grant…
- Study the foundation or grant provider’s history of awarded grants to become familiar with what might be a reasonable request.
- Take time to ensure that the budget, forecast, and supportive materials you provide to the foundation or grant provider support the grant amount you are requesting.
- Ensure all communication with the grantor is consistent. Inconsistencies will create doubt, which is a cardinal sin when you are in the beginning stages of establishing creditability.
Step 2: Find the Right Person to Ask
Not all people feel comfortable asking others to give. Some are at ease selling raffle tickets to anybody, while others don’t want to bother people with such requests but will be completely at home asking a donor for $50,000. Find the right person who will best represent the amount being asked for.
Step 3: Be Confident in your Request
Don’t be afraid to ask for the amount you have ascertained. Your confidence will come from the research you have done and the passion you have for the project. Timidity comes across as uncertainty not only for you but the project itself. Good luck, and remember your dedication, research, conviction, and enthusiasm will create the reward.