Grant Writing for LibrariesSouth Central Library System Denise Anton Wright New Glarus Public Library August 6, 2010
Our Purpose Today • Encourage you to write grants for your library • Identify grant opportunities that are “do-able” for even small libraries • Help you gather information that will help with any grant application / project • Advise you on what can be the “tough” areas on grants (budget & reports) • Offer tips to – hopefully - make the whole process easier
Why bother writing grants? • Extra funding is always needed – especially now • Grant writing forces you to “see” your library, services & community in a totally different light • Positive public relations • Builds partnerships that might not otherwise happen
Projects that will make a positive difference Projects that involve partnerships within the community Projects that are new – or at least new to the applicant Projects that will result in positive PR for them Applicants with a good track record Applicants that do what they say they will do and submit all the necessary paperwork on time Applicants that will give lots of credit to the granting organization Granting organizations arelooking for . . .
Before you start . . . . • Refer to your library’s long range plan – what projects fit into it? • Take a hard look at your library & your community – what will make a difference? • A “wish list” for possible grant projects is vital & it should be ongoing
More to think about . . . • Start small – “grants bring more grants” • “He who has the money sets the rules” –(Amy Kellertrass, formerly of the Illinois State Library) • Make sure your governing body – library board, etc – knows & approves of any grant application • Always give yourself plenty of time • Become familiar with all aspects of the grant application – especially final report requirements
Gathering information Gather together in one spot: • Information about your library (use statistics, patron count, service area, etc.) • Information about your community (history, demographics, economic info., etc.) • Information pertaining to the project / equipment / etc.
How to find out about grants • System newsletters / websites • Foundations in Wisconsinwww.wifoundations.org/ • RFP Bulletin (e-mail alerts from the Foundation Centerfoundationcenter.org/) • Library publications / websites (ALA has several ongoing grants – “We the People” for example) • Specialized publications / websites (AASLH for example – American Association for State and Local History )
Foundation Center • http://foundationcenter.org/newsletters • Online newsletters available • Five “Cooperating Collections” of their core publications located in WI (L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library in Eau Claire, LaCross Public Library, University of Wisconsin – Madison, Marquette University & University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point)
Local Community Foundations • Excellent grant opportunity • Great way to get started writing grants • Local overview – local emphasis • Wisconsin’s Certified Community Foundations website - www.wisconsingives.org/
The website for Wisconsin’s Certified Community Foundations has a searchable map of Wisconsin that allows you to find a local Community Foundation – super cool! Foundation Finder Choose the county where your client lives to find Certified Community Foundations serving your area. You can also find by name.
2005 – two new computers for the Circulation Desk 2006 – Spanish / English family learning games 2007 – furnishings (rug & bean bag chair) for revamped teen space 2008 - wireless Internet project (both wireless & new furniture appropriate to use with laptops) 2009 – German language children’s materials 2010 – planning to submit a grant to purchase an AWE children’s educational computer (Spanish / English version) Our New Glarus Community Foundation Projects
Connecting to Collections Bookshelf • www.aaslh.org/Bookshelf(IMLS partnering with American Association for State and Local History) – online application • NGPL received in Spring of 2008 • Bookshelf = 11 core collection titles & 5 non-living collection titles – items valued at over $700 • Most recent grant opportunity (October 19th to November 20th 2009) – focused on living collections (plants, animals, etc.)
Just a few of the “Connecting to Collections Bookshelf” New Glarus PL received
Picturing America • http://picturingamerica.neh.gov(National Endowment for the Humanities partnering with ALA) • Online grant application • NGPL received in summer of 2008 • Collection of marvelous posters of American art, craft & architecture and a very useful resource guide • Not currently being offered – grants to over 76,000 schools and public libraries across America were given in two cycles • Lots of great follow-up travel / training opportunities connected with receiving this grant
The Big Read • www.neabigread.org • Pilot program in 2006 – has grown to over 800 funded projects (National Endowment for the Arts partnering with IMLS & ArtsMidwest) • NGPL awarded for Fahrenheit 451 in the 2009-2010 cycle (268 non-profits funded) – our events took place the month of October (events included a kick-off, book discussions, a presentation by Bradbury’s biographer, and a teen movie night) • For 2010-2011 cycle only 75 projects were funded – very competitive – deadline was February 2, 2010
Folks who entered our Big Read “Red Hot Chili Cook-off (Kick-off Event – October 2009)
Other “do-able” grant opportunities • Ezra Jack Keats Foundation - offers annual mini-grants (maximum of $500) to school and public libraries www.ezra-jack-keats.org • Libri Foundation - offers matching grants up to $350 – three cycles per year - to rural public libraries with limited budgets for new children’s books (books appropriate for birth to age nine) www.librifoundation.org
Now it’s time to celebrate! • Publicize the grant when it’s announced that you’ve received it, during the project, and after the project • Send information to your local, state & national legislators – as appropriate