Advice nad Information on Grant Seeking and Proposal Writing
Sample of Inquiry to a Foundation

The Foundation Name
City, State Zip

Dear Dr. ______________:

The XYZ organization is a private nonprofit agency that has taken the lead in providing temporary shelter for young "street people" in ABC city. I am writing to see if you would consider a proposal to expand the employment and counseling services available to these youth.

Our organization currently operates four shelters serving 75 young people each night. This is an increase of 30 percent from last year. Our major goal is to convince these young people to seek some form of additional education, to become employed, and, where appropriate, to return home.

We believe our chances of accomplishing this would be improved by a person working among the shelters who could direct our residents to the alternative education, employment, health and mental health counseling services available throughout the city. Your foundation has expressed a special interest in the coordination of services to young people. We hope that you will give our project further consideration.

The other community services involved have pledged their cooperation. They agree that a major problem in reaching these young people is the "in-take" process and that this can best be initiated at our shelters. We estimate the cost of this project the first year at $ ____, of which $ _____ will be provided by the cooperating agencies. We would like you to consider a proposal for the remainder. If we can prove that our service is effective, we would qualify next year for some of the demonstration funds available through ___________ agency.

I will be calling shortly to seek an appointment to discuss this project. Ms. _____ of DEF agency, one of your past grantees, will be accompanying me. She is helping in the design of this project.

In the meantime, would you please mail me your application guidelines and any instructions for preparing a completed request. A copy of our 501(c)3 letter is attached.

Source: Getting Funded: A Complete Guide to Proposal Writing, by Mary Hall.

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