Five costly mistakes people make when applying for grants.

Here in the UK since 2020 we’ve dealt with a pandemic, the biggest rise in inflation since the 1980s, a cost-of-living crisis and major political turmoil. These events have all had a big impact on grant distribution, how charities interact with grant givers and rapidly evolving expectations and demands.

One direct effect of this turmoil is an increase in demand for funding, often leaving grant makers inundated with applications and creating major competition for limited resources.

So, for those seeking grant funding, understanding how to put together a successful application that will increase your chances of being awarded the money you need is more important than ever. You must be able to clearly define your organisations needs, how the grant will help, what benefits it will help deliver and for whom.

We recently sat down with our grants team here at Localgiving to understand some of the typical reasons why grants aren’t successful:

  • Not answering the question. If you are unsure – contact the grant giver before putting in your application. Don’t write what you want to write, write what you need to.

  • Inconsistencies and errors. Whether its typos and language, or fonts and layout – check, check, and check again your application.

  • Not tailoring it to be specific to this grant. Don’t just copy and paste. A stray reference from a past application in a new one would reflect very badly on you.

  • Using difficult to understand language. Don’t get technical, use jargons or acronyms – remember, the person reviewing your application will be looking at lots of documents, and you don’t want to make them work hard.

  • Not providing proof. The funder will not just ‘take your word for it’ when it comes to your story – you need so show data, facts plus impact statements and testimonials.

For more on Localgiving's grant programme click here.