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Of course, your major goal will be to provide an AED for your community, but you'll also want to think about more specifics. For example, how might an AED be used to promote further awareness about cardiac arrest? Do you want to include funding for AED and CPR training in your proposal? How might you partner with other community AEDs around town? Making concrete goals before you begin to search for an appropriate grant will make the process much smoother.
We've done a bit of the work here in the next section of this guide with an index of available national funding for AEDs. While looking for state or local opportunities,we recommend checking out The Grantsmanship Center's website. They provide listings of foundations by state including rankings of top giving foundations. When browing a foundation's website, pay special attention to the funding goals or priorities they list. Some foundations focus on very narrow for almost anything that could benefit the local community. Also make sure your organization qualifies for funding.Searching for funding for AEDs may be a bit difficult as these devices are medical equipment; however, they are not directly tied to hospital or clinical care. You may find some foundations are only interested in funding healthcare costs that are directly tied to a formal system of care.However, many foundations are very concerned with improving healthcare disparities fo underpriviliged communities. So, if your organization serves a population with an overall lack of access to care you may be able to qualify for these type of grants.You may also want to consider how you might be able to partner with your local emergency services or hospital to improve the chain of care as some grant opportunities also focus on this. Don't forget that the AED will benefit your community and has potential to enhance education efforst, so keep your eye out for grants that focus on community devleopment.
Once you've narrowed potential grant sources down to five or fewer, you'll want to take the time to personally reach out to each foundation. Pick up the phone or send an e-mail to introduce yourself and your organization. Feel free to ask the foundation to evaluate if it seems like they could be a potential funding fit for your project
If you're able, consider setting up an in-person meeting with the foundation. Make sure to come prepared to chat about your goals and how you see those aligning with the foundation's priorities. This will help you get a better idea of which grant opportunity is the best match.
Once you've selected the best fit grant program for your organization, you can begin to complete the application or request for proposal. Every foundation has a different process for their application. Make sure to follow every direction to the letter. You may be asked to submit your nonprofit's financial reports as well as written statements about how you will use the grant. You will definitely want to include information about the lifesaving potential of AEDs in public spaces. Track and keep up with all deadlines for the grant application process. These deadlines are often hard and fast and you can easily be disqualified from receiving funds if you don't keep all deadlines and include all requested documents. Don't be afraid to let members of your community know about the grant application. Ask those around you to help compile any statements or documents as necessary.
Unfortunately, you may not receive a grant on your first try. If this is the case, make sure to politely ask the foundation's staff or point of contact how you might be able toimprove your proposal in the future. Hopefully, if you were in contact with the foundation prior to your application you were able to confirm that your project aligned with donation priorities. Therefore, you may just need to improve elements of the actual application in the future. If you were awarded a grant- congratulations! Make sure you thank the foundation for their support with a thoughtful note. Don't be shy promoting your newly grant-funded project in your community. Most foundations require grant recipients to keep them updated on a project's progress through reports on a set basis. Honoring these requests is absolutely essential to your future success in obtaining grants. Foundations use these measures to ensure their money is being used wisely and will be far more likely to offer further grants to your organization in the future if their wishes are respected.