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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Health Resources and Services Administration

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Write a Strong Application

Work Strong image.

Writing a grant application is a formidable task that can take 40 hours or more. Before you start, be sure you answer "yes" to the following questions:

Have I read the Funding Opportunity Announcement (also known as the Grant Guidance or Grant Instructions) completely and carefully? Do I understand it?

Is my organization eligible to apply, based on the eligibility criteria described in the Funding Opportunity Announcement?

Does my organization have the technical expertise, the personnel and the financial capacity to successfully implement the kind of project described in the Funding Opportunity Announcement?

Are all the stakeholders in my organization supportive of applying for this grant?

Is my organization prepared to do what it takes to successfully implement the project within the budget we're proposing?

Important Parts of the Application

Your application will be rated and scored by a team of independent, objective reviewers with expertise in the relevant disciplines. The Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) includes the criteria they will use in their review and  specific information to be included in your application – information the reviewers will be looking for.

Be concise (your application cannot be longer than 80 pages) and precise in describing:

  • Goals and objectives, which should be clearly defined and specific;
  • Need, which includes both the need for the service or activity that the grant will support and also your organization's track record in fulfilling that need;
  • Response and impact, which clearly shows how you plan to achieve the purpose of the grant program and includes supporting data whenever possible;
  • Resources and capabilities, which delineates the knowledge, staffing and fiscal stability that you have to carry out your proposal and meet the goals of the grant program;
  • Budget, which is a realistic plan that matches your goals and objectives and includes a narrative that justifies the costs.

Before You Submit

Your submission is final. You can't make edits after submission. Be thorough in your review, but do not wait until the last minute to submit. Late submissions are not accepted.

  • Check your proposal for spelling, correct calculations and adherence to page limits and font and file-type requirements.
  • Use the checklist provided in the FOA or create your own, but make sure all required documents are included and in the order specified in the FOA.
  • Review the content and be sure you have addressed all the criteria against which your proposal will be scored.



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Tips for Writing Good Grant Proposals

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