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Proposal Budgeting Basics


When reviewing proposals, grantmakers often look at the budget first.

Jane Geever, author of The Foundation Center's Guide to Proposal Writing, conducted interviews with a number of grantmakers and found that many do, in fact, consider the budget to be the best way to get a feel for the project without a lot of verbiage and hype. When asked the question, "How do you usually read a grant request?" here's what some of the respondents had to say:

"I look at the budget. Over the years I've learned that narrative can be enriching, but the numbers are stark and straightforward. I want to see that the money is doing the job described in the proposal." Joel Orosz W.K. Kellogg Foundation

"I skip around the document in the following way: first the budget, to see if the request is appropriate and to see the agency's financials; then the project section, to see what they want to accomplish; then the board list." Lynn Pattillo The Pittulloch Foundation, Inc.

"I often look at the budget and then read the proposal backwards." Michael Gilligan The Henry Luce Foundation, Inc.
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