Welcome to The Resourceful Community! This site is dedicated to strengthening communities by encouraging and equipping the schools, faith-based organizations, and nonprofits that serve those communities.
I remember writing my very first grant 12 years ago. It was a modest application for a community center in a small, somewhat isolated rural community in Northern California. The grant was unsuccessful, and when we received the decline letter, I was crestfallen. Though my client was encouraging, I was acutely aware in that moment just how much I didn’t know about grantwriting.
If you had told me then that I’d go on to help raise $34.5 million in grant funding, I’m not sure I would have believed you. But that’s what happened.
Over the last decade, I’ve been privileged to work alongside some amazing folks—passionate people who have dedicated themselves to the health and vitality of the communities they serve. I’ve written grants for schools (public and private), school districts, county offices of education, colleges and universities, social service agencies, arts organizations, nonprofits of all sizes and stripes, and churches and faith-based organizations. I’ve done other types of persuasive writing for nonprofits too—creating fundraising materials, newsletter copy, appeal letters, presentations, and even some speeches. It’s been a rewarding journey. A journey made possible by a few experienced guides and some talented traveling companions.
The Resourceful Community is my attempt to keep that legacy going.
I’ve had the opportunity to mentor several new grant writers. I discovered that I love teaching other people these skills.
Trust me, you have what it takes to write winning grant proposals and other persuasive pieces for your cause.
Whether you are a busy staff person wearing multiple hats at a small nonprofit, a dedicated volunteer at your local school or church, or a mid-career fundraising professional looking to hone your craft, I hope this space will equip you to identify, secure, and leverage the resources available for your organization. I hope you will see what I see: that there is abundant provision for your abundant community.
Here is what you can count on from me:
On this blog, I will curate conversations on topics related to grant writing, grants management, and persuasive writing for nonprofits, along with occasional forays into community development and neighborhood leadership. To make sure you don’t miss a thing, you can subscribe to the site via RSS. As the site grows, I also encourage you to use the search bar on the right to find posts on specific topics.
The Resources page above will be populated over time with book and tool recommendations, useful ebooks, examples, templates, and cheat-sheets.
The best way to stay up-to-date with what is happening here is by signing up for the weekly Resourceful Community Newsletter, the form for which can be found in the top right corner of the sidebar. Each newsletter includes a digest of the most recent blog entries, of course. But it also includes exclusive content—useful links, featured grant opportunities, a first-glance at upcoming topics, and more. We will also use the newsletter to troubleshoot real grants from community members. (Here’s where to submit your question.)
If you know me personally, or if you read my most recent book, you know how essential I believe conversation is. (We have an entire chapter about it in Slow Church.) It’s important to me that The Resourceful Community is a conversation not a monologue. I will be active in the comments section of every post. It would also mean the world to me if we could connect on social media. Here are a few of the places you can find me:
Your organization is doing important work, and your role is essential to that work. I’m going to do what I can to help you succeed. Thanks for letting me be a part of it.
Question: What are some some topics or questions you’d like to see addressed on this site?
Image Credit: Chris In Plymouth
The Grant Writing Process: 11 Basic Steps (PDF & Checklist)
Writing grants for your organization is an adventure.
You wouldn't set out on an epic hike without at least a general understanding of the terrain ahead. So why would you set out on your grantseeking journey without an overview of what lies in store?
This eight-page PDF and checklist are the perfect place to start.