How To Apply For Government Grants In 2015
Go to the Grants.gov Website to Start Your Search
Grants are typically listed according to the agency that administers them along with the deadlines that the applications should be received. There are a number of ways to search for a particular grant. You can perform a search without actually registering with the site, but you have to register prior to applying for a specific grant.
- Do a search by keyword.
- Do a search based on one of the federal agencies that are offering the grant. Refine the search according to sub-agency.
- Do a search based on opportunities by the Recovery Act.
- Do a search by category regarding funding activity.
Review the Grant's Outline
The general outline of the grant will enable you to assess whether it’s a good opportunity before you actually apply for it. When you finally find an appropriate opportunity that meets your specific needs, click on the button marked ‘Application’.
Download the Application Package
Every grant application package includes detailed instructions in PDF format about the specific government agency that’s offering the grant in addition to the application forms that need to be filled out and submitted offline. There are mandatory fields you’ll need to fill in.
- The latest version of Adobe Reader is required to properly manage the fill-in forms in order to complete your application. Grants.gov will analyze your current version of Adobe Reader to determine if it’s the latest version so you can update it along with a helpful video tutorial on how to correctly fill out your application. If more than one person in your organization is filling out an application, each computer needs an updated version of Adobe Reader.
- Some of the fields limit how many characters you can use. For instance, the AOR (Authorized Organization Representative) field is restricted to 30 characters on Form SF-424, while the R&R Senior/Key Individual Form’s organization name field only allows 60 characters in total. Exceeding the number of total characters allowed in any field can cause a delay regarding your application. However, Grants.gov will immediately let you know so you can fix the error.
- If necessary, you can copy and paste relevant data into the application fields from a basic text editor like Notepad. Note: Do not copy and paste from Microsoft Word or any other word processor since it may cause errors as a result of special characters or fonts contained within the text. In order to correctly copy a text from a word processor, save a copy of it first as a .txt (text file) before opening the text using text editor software.
Submit Your Entire Package
Once you’re online, go to the cover page of your application and click on ‘Save and Submit’ in order to submit your completed package to the Grants.gov site along with any necessary attachments. Make sure your attachments follow the guidelines of the agency that’s offering the grant. Your entire submission shouldn’t be any longer than 200 megabytes in all, even though some agencies allow applicants to surpass the limit.
- In order to speed up the process, the Grants.gov site won’t let 2 or more files share the same name. Rename your files before attaching them to your grant application or they won’t be accepted.
- According to the basic standards outlined in each government agency that’s offering the grant you’re seeking, all files including audio, graphic images, and video need to be compressed prior to attaching them to your application.
Be Sure to Follow Up on Your Application
Grants.gov will send you a notification twice via email during the following two business days upon submitting your application. They will first tell you that they’ve received your submission and then let you know it’s either confirmed or rejected due to technical mistakes. If it’s confirmed, you’ll get another email from Grants.gov to let you know that the administering agency received your submission, which will likely be followed by yet another email in order to inform you that the agency has officially assigned you a unique tracking number regarding your application.
Once the administering agency replies back to you, any requests concerning status updates have to be directed to that specific agency. If the grantor agency assigned you a unique tracking number, use that number when corresponding with the agency, whereby you can get from the Grants.gov website. 2015 government grants are available for virtually anyone to use for a variety of reasons.