The program description provides you with an opportunity to describe your program in detail to the prospective funder. It answers the question, “What are your going to do with the funding if it is received?” On many scoring rubrics, this section of the proposal is worth about 1/3 of the total available points. Clearly, if you don’t receive the available points in this section, you are not likely to receive the requested funding.
Include as many details about the program as possible, in the space allotted. This section is where you will provide information about the methods you will use in the program for which you are seeking funding. Describe, using action verbs, the activities that are included in the proposed program. Unless requested elsewhere in the proposal, it is a good idea to include a timeline of how you envision the program occurring. In many proposals, you will also be asked to provide detail about how the program will be staffed and the hiring criteria for staff.
Ultimately, the program description is your organization’s response to the needs that you have identified and described in the Needs Statement. The needs statement provided an opportunity for you to go into detail about the issues and challenges facing the community you serve, now you have an opportunity to describe how your organization is positioned to address those challenges. It may be difficult for someone who doesn’t know your organization to make the connection between the stated needs and your program—it is your job to “spell it out” for the reviewer to be certain the connection is made.
Writing a clear program description will increase the likelihood of grant funding success and increased funding for your organization.
A strong project description:
- Uses action verbs to help the reader visualize the work being done
- Is realistic in what can be accomplished with the funding requested.
- Outlines the time frame in which the work will be done
- Connects the work being done by the organization to the needs identified in the community.
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