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grant writing philosophy

Grant writers don’t “get grants.”

This statement may surprise you. You might think that a fundraising consultant who is attempting to sell the grant development services of his company would promote the idea that grant writers do indeed go out and “get grants” for organizations like yours.

It just doesn’t happen to be true.

Securing grant dollars is a collective process that involves clarity of mission, organizational vitality, strategic thinking, creative program development, fiscal acumen, competent staff people, diligent research—and effective grant writing. (It’s also critical to hit those deadlines.) The role of a grant developer is to assemble and lead a team that can synthesize all those essential elements. The final product needs to make a compelling case for the grant request because the document is built on a solid foundation of organizational vision, accomplishment, capability, and practice.

So, I hate to admit it, but grant writers don’t get grants. Visionary ideas that are translated into well-conceived programs carried out by creative individuals working within strong, dynamic organizations get grants.

I learned the philosophic and mechanical principals of grant development through over twenty years of practical experience as an executive director of small social justice organizations and as a development specialist for larger non-profit social service agencies. I have helped those organizations to raise more than $10 million dollars in grant awards for a diversity of programs including community organizing, job development, mental health recovery, housing, public policy, voter empowerment, and a hundred more worthy causes. I have been responsible for managing a grant cycle from the inspirational moment of idea conceptualization, through planning and strategic analysis, program and budget development, researching funding sources, contacting potential funders, writing and submitting grant proposals, and reporting on the implementation of programs that received funding. I have helped organizations secure grants from small family foundations, community foundations, prestigious national foundations; and from local, state, and federal government sources.

The mission of my business is to forge partnerships with organizations that are making a fundamental difference in our community, nation, and world. If you think your organization fits that description, please contact me and we can discuss how to team up to collect the grant dollars that you and the people you are organizing, mobilizing, and serving truly deserve.

Remember, grant writers don’t “get grants,” but the grants they help your organization to get can fuel a better world.

Terry Rumsey

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Terry Rumsey, President of Green Seeds, is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) and complies with the AFP Code of Ethical Principles and Standards of Professional Practice.

AFP is the professional association of individuals responsible for generating philanthropic support for a wide variety of nonprofit, charitable organizations. Founded in 1960, AFP (formerly the National Society of Fund Raising Executives) advances philanthropy through its nearly 27,000 members in 176 chapters throughout the world.

For more information about the Association of Fundraising Professionals click here to visit their website

Terry is a member of the AFP Greater Philadelphia Chapter (AFP/GPC) and participates in the chapter’s continuing education and professional development programs.

For more information about the Greater Philadelphia Chapter of AFP click here to visit their website

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