A Compelling Letter of Intent / Inquiry

Anyone can say they want something. It’s being convincing enough to get what you want that’s the hard part.

That’s half the battle when a nonprofit is seeking a grant. When crafting a Letter of Intent (LOI), it is important to clearly lay out your organization’s mission, vision, purpose, and goals. If all of this information is not easy to articulate and comprehend, you have little chance of getting the grant money you need.

In his book “Nonprofit Management 101,” Darian Rodriguez Heyman lays out four questions you need to answer in your LOI:

  • What was it that created the demand for your organization? Which parties benefit when you complete your mission — and why is that important?
  • Why should people care? What about your organization makes it stand apart from others providing similar services? Focus on the uniqueness of your organization, not the defects of another.
  • How do you accomplish your goals? Are you a direct service or technical assistance provider? Do you have specific expertise in an area, or do you recruit people from the community who are experts in that field?
  • How do you measure impact, and how will that impact be advanced if you were to receive the grant you requested?

About Gary Coiro

Nonprofit & Church Leader Nonprofit Leader and Consultant since 2004, following 15 years as a pastor. Competencies include board development, fundraising, staff development and management, strategic planning, church work, Bible teaching, and capital campaigns. Currently consulting and serving on the Church Ministries Management Team for a large multi-cultural evangelical church.
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