• · The Common Grant Application format is an outline of information that is essential for any successful grant application. The Common Grant Application was designed by representatives from Colorado foundations and nonprofit organizations in order to streamline and bring consistency to the grant-seeking process. The Common Grant Application format is based on a survey of guidelines used by many foundations. Although most Colorado foundations have agreed to accept the Common Grant Application, it is important to check the specific guidelines of each funding source. Most foundation guidelines will specifically state whether or not they accept the Common Grant Application and what they may require in addition.
    · Corporate donors may not require as much information, and State and Federal grants usually have their own very specific formatting guidelines.
    · The School Grants Sample Proposals website has many sample proposals available for viewing and printing:
    • A review of successful proposals is a great way to learn how to write a fundable proposal.
    • Remember: regardless of what helpful hints you may find; the most important thing to refer to is the funder's guidelines!
    • These samples will give you a feel for the variety of formats that can be used and for the universal elements that are contained in every good grant proposal.
    • Use these samples to learn what a good needs statement contains, to see what goals and objectives are and how the activities relate to those goals and objectives, and see how an evaluation plan is designed.
    • Use these samples to find ideas for using tables and graphs to relay information to the reader.
    • Reasons not to use these proposals as your own:
    • A successful proposal is one that has been locally planned and designed. You must meet the needs of your community and you must have local buy-in to the project.
    • The guidelines your proposal should follow may not be the same as the ones around which these proposals were written. You must match your proposal to the exact guidelines given by the funder for whom you are writing your proposal.
    • No proposal is perfect - not even those that are successful. You may inadvertently choose to copy something from one of the samples that was not quite as strong as it could have been.