You will be asked for other information depending on the foundation’s format for submitting a proposal. Once again, think before responding. As succinctly and precisely as possible, give them what they ask and no more. Don’t waste their time.
The most important piece of required information is the budget: it must add up. I don’t mean that to be funny. Not only should the numbers be accurate, the budget must correspond exactly to the project narrative. It should be as compelling for the accountants as the narrative is for the readers.
Along with the budget, you must include a section on other funding sources. No one likes to be the only person rowing the boat, or funding a project. Whether it’s an individual donor or a foundation, funders have to have company or they won’t stick around. Besides, if your project is as important as you say it is, what happens if this foundation can’t fund it this year? What will happen to those who need the help?
One strategy you might consider is to show how the project will operate with existing funding, but how it will be stronger or more effective with the funding you seek. Maybe there’s a more efficient piece of equipment you can’t afford. A room might be renovated to make the project more accessible.
Unless a foundation is very familiar with your organization, requests for general operating funds can be a hard sell. Frequently, a specific ask, based on the foundation’s funding criteria, could make the difference in whether or not you get funded, especially if this is your first request to the foundation.
You must also indicate somewhere, even if the question isn’t asked in the application, how the project will be sustained in the future. Foundations are reluctant to fund something that will disappear after their money is gone. Even if they don’t want a long-term funding commitment, they want to see long-term viability.
Reiterate how the project fits into the long-term strategy of your organization and how you are committed to maintaining it. By starting a project, you assume a moral responsibility toward those you serve. By asking for funding, you create a fiduciary responsibility toward those who give.