Education

Grant Writing Is A Journey! My First Case!

I have had the pleasure of knowing a fiercely talented poet, author, educator, and grad student. She started a humble non-profit organization in the fall of 2010. The organization is, The Backpack Foundation. TBPF is based on the premise of providing school supplies on a quarterly basis to elementary schools in the southern Dallas sector (the most impoverished area in the city). She began by holding school supply drives at the various Poetry Slams that she either hosted or even performed at around town. People donated school supplies in droves.
She has now relocated to the Oakland area in California to attend graduate school. However, the mission of TBPF is still alive and well. She is now preparing to introduce TBPF to the Oakland area and implement school based programs that will encourage, mentor, and foster the raw writing and performance talent of Oakland’s youth.
So, with knowing that, I offered to write a grant on the organization’s behalf to hopefully secure funding for this initiative. And let me tell you, writing this grant has been a challenge but so inspiring. I have discovered so many foundations that provide program funding for education and arts enrichment initiatives, and as a former teacher, that brings me such joy because it is so needed in our public schools. One can find grants by various categories such as; education, arts, civic, regional, medical, you name it, its out there and the information is readily available if your willing to roll up your sleeves and dig for it.
Grants need to be succinct but also vivid and thorough in order to be taken seriously and considered by foundation staff or panelists. That is not necessarily an easy feat, especially if you love to write from a strong narrative point of view, as I tend to do. However, I have learned while writing this grant that if you research heavily and create an air tight outline, then when the actual composing begins it becomes easier to craft and your risk of writing on and on aimlessly, diminishes.
I am at the tail end of writing this grant. I have found it to be such a great exercise to strengthen my writing. It will also be another sample that I can add to my writing portfolio for future clients to review. I aspire to offer grant writing as a part of my service offerings in the near future, and thankfully, The Backpack Foundation, is the perfect catalyst to jumpstart this journey.

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