Help with Grants

Grants are a great income source if you can ace the application process.
To help, we've collected tips and resources - plus a list of relevant grants.

See a list of grants for which P&Cs can apply.

Get your ‘story’ straight

Know your project well and believe in it. Working with your school on a shared project vision is crucial (see tips from one P&C).  You'll need to clearly state your proposal, its goals and activities and how you will evaluate the project.  Read the grant’s funding guidelines carefully and make sure your project is a good fit. Craft the story of your project to match the grant. Looking at previous projects supported by the grant can be useful. Be sure you’re ready to accept a grant and finish the project within the timeframe. See more on getting ready to apply, and these great sample answers for grant applications.

Dot your 'i's

Each grant has its own application format. Follow this exactly and provide all information needed. If you are not sure, most grants have a contact for questions. Check the due date (late applications are rarely accepted) and leave yourself plenty of time to gather all the information and fill in the paperwork.

Cross your ‘t’s

Prepare your budget carefully, get quotes and include enough detail to make the granting body confident about how the money will be spent. Check any exclusions (eg most won’t fund wages). Include in-kind contributions (such as volunteer time, donated goods), but don’t confuse in-kind and dollar funding and be clear what part of your project you are asking the grant maker to fund.

Tick the boxes

Make sure your application stands out - here's a great checklist for winning grant applications.

You’ve won? Well done!

Now you just need to run the project and keep track of spending! 
Most grants need to be acquitted at the end (where you show how the money was actually spent) so keep all receipts and records well organised. Government grants can be auditted several years after they are completed, so keep your records safe. See also See Section 15 of the Treasurer's Handbook.
If things go wrong contact the granting body and be frank. Most will allow a change of use of the funds. And send in your paper work on time – you may want to apply for another grant in future!

Resources to help with writing grants

The Funding Centre have excellent tools to help you write your grant application.

The Fundraising Directory also has tips on applying for grants; or check these School Grant writing tips from the US.

Samples of past successful grant applications by ACT P&Cs:

(personal details have been removed)

If you would like to share your successful applications to help other P&Cs, please contact us.