Crafting a winning grant proposal requires an investment of time, and the size of the award is not always commensurate with the complexity of the proposal package. This raises important strategic questions for grantseekers: If you’re going to commit the time to knock proposals out of the park, why would you want to pursue small grants? Is going after pocket change really worth it?
Holly Thompson, contributing editor for The Grantsmanship Center, in Los Angeles, Calif., said there are plenty of good reasons to pursue small grants — as long as it makes strategic sense to do so. “Time is money, but small grants of a couple thousand dollars or less can leverage powerful benefits for both small and large organizations.” Going small can help nonprofits to:
Thompson said it can be natural for nonprofits to want to use the limited resources to focus on large grants, but there are downsides to big money. “Large grants can be a long shot, and they can come with strings attached that can overwhelm the organization’s capacity,” Thompson said. “Small grants that are in the nonprofit’s sweet spot can accomplish a lot with a little.”
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