Four surprising things we’ve learned



Working at a private foundation is interesting. We meet uplifting, passionate people. We see the success stories (and the ticks and fleas) of hundreds of nonprofits each year. We’ve learned a few things along the way:
1. It’s darkest before the dawn. Last week someone called about a grant extension because fundraising was lagging. This week they emailed to say they completed their capital campaign!
2. Grantseekers groan at setting project results. But love it when they exceed those very same goals. Human nature!
3. Even experienced grantseekers hesitate to ask questions. We think it’s the only way to get good work done. Please call 260-347-1278.
4. No one applies for grants in December. Maybe it’s all of the parties, Christmas programs, eating, shopping and wrapping…but no one sends grant apps in December. Look out January 2 though.

3 replies
  1. Dawn
    Dawn says:

    Your third comment about hesitating to ask questions made me think of my class. I use to think that I was the one with all the answers. In the last 2 years that we have implemented the Leader In Me program, I have set my ego aside and trusted in the ideas of my 7 year old’s
    …asking them questions and seeking answers from them. Instead of racking my brain for what kids need, maybe I need to ask them Monday morning, “What do you think we could write a grant for?”

    • Sharon Smith
      Sharon Smith says:

      We recently made a grant to support the community improvement idea of a 10-year-old girl in Minnesota! So, bring on those class ideas!

  2. Stephanie
    Stephanie says:

    I think it is in people’s nature to procrastinate. There are quite a few people out there that live by putting off things to do today because there will always be a tomorrow.


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