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Guidelines for Proposal Writings

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When it comes to the human service field grant funding and the funding programs are both very important to the different organizations and agencies. In the paper it will provide the reader with the different definitions of a needs statement, grants or proposals and quantitative and qualitative data. It will also state what the purpose of a needs assessment is.

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Further along in the paper the basic format for writing a proposal or grant will be explained. There then will be steps explaining why each of the elements is important. How and where do you use quantitative and qualitative data in a proposal will conclude the paper.

A need statement sets the framework for the entire proposal, as it will describe a critical set of conditions or a social need affecting people or things in a specific place at a specific time (Carlson& O’Neal- McElrath, 2008). One of the main purposes of a need assessment is to help assist with some agencies planning. A need statement can be the turning point that will help the funder to give thought on a non- profit request. When it comes to developing a need statement the writer has to address the organization purpose and mission statement.

Within the need statement it should generally approach what type of clients their specific organization will or already serving. When there is a need for your specific organization you and the organization have to be well supported and have evidence to back it up. The facts can be on the views or trends found in the experience of doing the work (Carlson & O’Neal- McElrath, 2008). The statement should be easy to understand, by keeping it sweet and simple you can accomplish the goal of making sure the reader understand your true need. When stating your agency need the writer has to make sure there are true facts and good sources.

Also never assume and use documents that do not have those legitimate facts. Make sure you state who have spoken on your specific topic, also make sure all data are documented, use touching stories of different individuals for an example and give the funder a clear view of the urgency of your request (Carlson & O’ Neal- McElrath, 2008). When using people to provide the different touching stories within the grant, you have to make sure the agency and the specific individual have data to back up the story. By giving the funder a clear view of your need they will then see how urgent your request is for funds for your specific agency.

There is a difference between an assessment and a needs assessment in the examination of learning. A regular assessment will move you forward to academic or professional awards which normally will include measurement of the performance, adequacy by an accessor and information that has been gathered. As for the needs statement it may have some similarities but once again it is mainly based off of professional judgment and data. The need assessment methods are limited by the standards of the assessment but it will eventually fall into the trap of assessing only a narrow range of needs (Learning Needs Assessment, 2013).

After you have your need assessment and other things such as the mission and vision statement, you then go on to create the grant or proposal. A grant is an award made to an individual or an institution to support the specific costs of the project implementation or continuation (Grant Writing Guidelines, 2013). Every grant has to make a compelling case. The presentation of the grant must be well spoken on as well as the ideas of the organization. The grant should also be clearly organized, well planned and goal oriented. When the grant has these in order the chance of getting accepted is higher.

The basic format for writing a standard grant or proposal includes the following: cover letter, proposal summary or abstract, introduction describing the grant seeker or organization, problem statement or need statement, project objectives, methods or design project evaluation, the future funding and project budget (How to Develop and Write A Grant Proposal, 2007). To start the grant you have the cover letter. On the cover letter it will include who the letter will be addressed to at the funding source. The cover will have the mission of the agency and discuss in which ways their project can add asset to the current goals.

Also within the cover letter you should limit the paragraphs to no more than four. In a federal or state grant a cover letter is normally not needed unless they ask for one. The cover letter is important in the grant writing process due to it is your chance to let the funder know up front about the agency goals and to let them know the grant will fulfill the requirements. The introduction of the application will let the agency describe their organization and demonstrate that they are qualified for the project at hand (How to Develop and Write a Grant Proposal, 2007).

In this section the history of the organization, goals and mission, how significant it is and the accomplishments and any success stories will be inserted. If the agency have received any endorsements, press coverage or previous grants it should be used as a reference with supporting documents. You also will need to speak on the staff and the list of board directors. The summary part is important due to it is the part where the agency can establish their credibility and get their point across (How to Develop and Write a Grant Proposal, 2007). The next section of the proposal would be the need statement.

The need statement is important due to it states the problem that you are addressing and the main reason of your proposal. The need statement which was previously discussed covers the areas as follows: recipients, who they are and how they benefit and receive services, social economic cost, the problem at hand with facts to support, stress what gaps exist in addressing the problem that is talked about in the proposal (How to Develop and Write a Grant Proposal, 2007). Also at the end of the need statement you should explain the time frame of the program to the funder and why securing the funds is critical to your organization.

The goals and objective is important to the proposal because it states what your organization hope to achieve. It will also help when you use powerful language that will be persuasive to the reader. The agency should always make sure that all goals and objectives are measureable. Also make sure the objective explains who and what you will be serving. The next part of the grant is the program design. This section shows how the project will work and solve the current problem at hand (How to Develop and Write a Grant Proposal, 2007).

Within this section you will have to be explicit, and be able to explain why the methods that you have chosen are the best and how they will make your objectives reachable. Within the program design you will state the supplies such as the equipment services required and the resources for this project. An evaluation plan should be a consideration in every stage of the proposal development (How to Develop And Write a Grant Proposal, 2007). Sometimes the evaluation is where some organizations fall short. The evaluation is important to the proposal due to this is the main part where grant reviewers will look.

The evaluation states how you will measure your results for your project. You also as an organization have to make sure methods and the objectives are consistent and explain how you will use the findings. The project sustainability is where the grant funder has funded the agency and now wants to see the results through the project sustainability (How to Develop And Write A Grant Proposal, 2007). In the project sustainability section you and the agency should restate the goals or plans for the project that you are trying to promote.

You should also as an agency state how funds will continue to flow in the future for the program. Some of the plans for the agency future could be things such as blueprints of how the plans will work, and include the hiring staff and other contractors if needed. The budget section is very important due to this is where you ask for the money for your organization program. The format of the budget should be clear for the funder to understand. In the budget section it will include personal expenses and project expenses. The budget section should always start with a proposal statement.

Generally budgets are divided into two categories one being the personnel cost and the second being the non-personnel cost (How to Develop And Write A Grant Proposal, 2007). In the personnel cost this is where the salaries on the employees come in and the health care as well. The non-personnel section will include utilities, equipment and the rental or the cost of leasing you agency building. When writing a grant you will always use quantitative and qualitative data within your research. Quantitative methods will output hard numbers while qualitative methods use descriptive data (Quantitative and Qualitative Evaluation Methods, 2013).

Qualitative data can sometimes include audio recordings, photos and other data. Qualitative methods have been used in research to explain specific methods, but can also show examples of the different applications at the same time. Qualitative method can be used in many complex settings for different interactions. Some of the interactions can be among professional groups and different organizations. Qualitative data will help clarify values, language and meanings attributed to people who play different roles in organizations and communities (Qualitative Methods, 2013). Qualitative data are gathered by interviews and observations.

The qualitative involve small numbers and can use open ended questionnaires when needed. A strength that qualitative data has is it can gather multiple methods and provide information on more difficult issues. Some of the limitations could be the time it would take to collect the data. Another limitation is it can sometimes be difficult to analyze. As an organization you can collect qualitative data by observation, interviews and focus groups (Quantitative and Qualitative Evaluation Methods, 2013). Quantitative data can be analyzed by using statistical methods. Some census, government statistics can include quantitative evaluations.

Quantitative can have strengths and weakness as well as Qualitative did. A strength that it has is data that is usually collected is efficient and easy to analyze. One limitation that is has is sometimes the data can be too large to explain some of the complex that issues that will arise. Within the grant for the organization the quantitative can come in handy when it comes to surveys or questionnaires, post-test, existing databases and statistical analysis. Qualitative data will be used for observations, interviews and non- statistical focus groups (Quantitative and Qualitative Evaluation Methods, 2013).

In the paper it provided the reader with the different definitions of a needs statement, grants or proposals and quantitative and qualitative data. It also stated what the purpose of a needs assessment is. Further along in the paper the basic format for writing a proposal or grant was explained. There then were steps explaining why each of the elements of the grant is important. Then to conclude there was how and where you use quantitative and qualitative data in a proposal. With this information provided in the paper the reader would now be able to complete a successful proposal.

References
Carlson, M., & O’Neal- McElrath, T. (2008). Winning Grants. Step by Step (3rd ed.). San Francisco, California: Jossey- Bass. How to Develop and Write a Grant Proposal. (2007). Retrieved from http://www.mikulski.senate.gov Grant Writing Guidelines. (2013). Retrieved from http://www.web.riverdeep.net Qualitative Methods. (2013). Retrieved from http://www/ncbi.nlm.nih.gov Quantitative and Qualitative Evaluation Methods. (2013). Retrieved from http://www.civicpartnerships.org