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Before You Write Your Grant Proposal

If you are new to the grant writing field or if you work in another field and are called upon to assist in the development of a grant proposal, there are some things you need to know before you begin. Knowing these four things will help facilitate the whole grant proposal process. Before you ever turn on the computer, here are some of the things you should know and be able to address.

Assess

This is the opportunity for you to become fully aware of the capacity of your organization and just what you have to offer. You should know the mission and vision of the organization and be fully able to discuss the programs and services provided. You should have access to copies of all important documents. These documents include the organizational tax exemption letter from the IRS, your Dunn and Bradstreet Number, your tax id number, the article of incorporation, the organizational chart, the bylaws, the policy and procedure manual and any other document that illustrates the impact of the services you provide. It is best to have digital copies of these as many of these will have to be attached to each grant proposal you submit.

You will need to understand the structure of the organization and where the programs you are seeking funding fall within that structure. You should be able to address staff and responsibilities and be able to identify any gaps in capacity.

Define Need

Above all else, you will need to be able to articulate the needs within your community and your ability to address and meet those needs. Many new grant writers confuse the need for dollars with the need for your programs. When a funder asks you to describe your needs, your answer must include statistics that represent the community problem you are solving. That might include poverty statistics, income guidelines and area median income, unemployment rates, children living below the poverty level, high school drop out rates, children receiving free or reduced lunches. Information like this is what illustrates to the funder that there is an issue in your community that needs addressing. If you cannot describe and define your need, you will never be able to reach potential funders.

If you can accurately address the constraints of your community then you can relate your plans to solve those problems. That is a separate section in most applications and is often called program approach, services to the community or something similar. That is your way to address and solve those needs you have demonstrated. Find your data and check your sources. Be prepared to share both in an effort to prove that you have the pulse of your community.

Identify Collaborators

The majority of funders these days are looking to see if you can leverage the award money they may give you. This is frequently called a match and some grants require a one to one match.This means for every dollar you ask for you must be able to show another dollar from another source. what is DNS . With respect to the federal government, if there is a match requirement, your match must be from non federal sources.

What this means for you is that you have to have partners or other funders. More and more funding sources are looking for organizations who are working with other providers to meet community needs at a grass roots level. With more sources dedicated to the solution to a problem the better the chances for the success of the program. Be able to identify your partners and, if possible, have signed partnership agreements in place.

Determine Cost

You need to know what the program is going to cost. You need to know where that program budget fits into the overall agency budget. While some agencies may not want grant proposal writers to have access to certain delicate financial information, most will realize that in the age of transparency and as a IRS approved non profit, most of that information is public information. There are ways to work with your Executive Director to keep certain information private while still providing the funder with all the required information. Be able to fully explain all of your program expenses and be able to justify each of them in relation to funding guidelines.

This great information is presented by the great team of writers at Grammarly, the world’s best grammar checker. This piece was edited electronically and proofed manually by John Macbeth.

Chicken Nuggets Barbecue Style

Chicken nuggets are delicious treat that kids drool over. They are easy to prepare and work with a wide variety of sauces. For many families, they are perfect snack or a wonderful main dish for a quick dinner. Unfortunately, chicken nuggets as we traditionally know them are not famous for being healthy. And if you take a closer look at their ingredients, it’s debatable whether you’re eating chicken at all. So while picking up a bag of frozen chicken nuggets at your grocery store might be more convenient, it might not be the best choice when you’re looking for something healthy or wholesome.

With a bit of creativity and an eye for fresh ingredients, you can use your outdoor grill to prepare a wonderful alternative. It won’t be as fast or easy to prepare these BBQ chicken nuggets, but the overall taste will more than make up for it. Please enjoy this recipe for chicken nuggets done barbecue style!

The Sauce

1 cup ketchup

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp powdered onion

2 tsp chili powder (leave out if you don’t want spicy)

1/4 cup maple syrup

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

The Nuggets

2 cups flour

1/2 tsp salt and pepper

Chicken Breasts (or thighs if you prefer a more tender nugget)

1/4 cup olive oil

1. The first step is to prepare the barbecue glaze or sauce. Of course you can use a standard bottled product if you’re short on time. But if you’ve never made a real sauce before, this is the perfect place to start. The great thing about making your own sauce is being able to control each and every ingredient and adjusting to your personal taste.

2. In a small saucepan, whisk together your Apple cider vinegar and then pour in your dried powders all at the same time. Bring to a boil and continue to whisk in the rest of your wet ingredients (Worcestershire sauce, Maple syrup, and ketchup) instead of Maple syrup, you can also use something else sweet like honey, or even molasses. Lower the overall heat to medium allowing to bubble and thicken.

Congratulations! You’ve just made your first barbecue sauce. Remember, this is more of a glaze so be careful not to have your food coated in it in the beginning of the cooking process. Otherwise you might experience a bit of burning.

3. Preheat your barbecue grill to 400-425 degrees F.

4. While your barbecue is reaching optimal oven temperatures, you’re going to shake and bake your chicken together with the flour and spices. You can play around with other dried herbs and seasonings as well, but simple salt-and-pepper works just fine. Remember, you’ll be getting plenty of flavor from the sauce as well.

5. Place your chicken nuggets on a baking sheet and drizzle olive oil over them. Leave them in your barbecue for about 15 minutes, then coat each piece with your sauce. Continue baking for another 7 minutes.

6. Let your nuggets it for about 3 minutes. You can add another coat of sauce or simply leave it on the side as a dipping sauce.

And there you have it, a much healthier all-natural chicken nugget that isn’t made of mystery parts. Serve alongside a simple garden salad for a great low cholesterol meal the whole family will enjoy.

This recipe comes from Gas Grills and BBQ, a site for barbecue lovers worldwide. You can find more BBQ ideas or reviews on the best products by visiting http://gasgrillsandbbq.com/

 

Top 5 Environmental Friendly Cities in the US

More and more Americans are becoming green conscious.  It used to be that only a handful of people were Eco-friendly.  Now being environmentally conscious has become a widely accepted kind of lifestyle. Americans are placing more emphasis on saving energy, reducing their carbon footprint, and eating organic.  With this shift in lifestyles, we’re finding that major American cities are embodying the green outlook of its citizens.

In the past few years, scientists have mapped out the greenest cities in America.  The survey was conducted by the U.S Census and the National Geographic Society’s Green guide to measure a cities overall score on recycling, ease of green living, means of travel, and use of power.  The survey measured how much renewable energy a city used, how readily public transportation is used, how many public or private buildings are green spaces, and how often the community recycles.  The results were as followed:

1. Portland, Oregon

If you have seen the recent IFC show, Portlandia, you will know why Portland is considered to be the perfect prototype for green living. The city has an abundance of Portland tree service, public parks and overall greenery.  In addition, Portland ‘s use of renewable energy accounts for around half of all energy uses.  Everyone in the community is very eco-friendly in their everyday routine activities.  Approximately 25% of Portlanders engage in public transportation, biking, or carpooling.  Portlanders are also very involved in organic farming and organic produce.  They have a strong community who support local farming and local products, which is not only great for the environment, but great for Portland’s economy.

2. San Francisco, California

San Francisco has the best of both worlds.  It has the appeal of a big city but functions like a well-oiled lean mean green machine.  The city itself has the highest rating for using solar energy.  San Francisco has always considered to be very forward in cultural movements.  They’ve taken the same open cultural movements into green living.  Artists in San Francisco have incorporated recycling in their everyday lives by incorporating recycled items in their artwork.  San Francisco is a great influential player of all the green cities.

3. Boston, Massachusetts

The city of Boston is one of the most beautiful cities adorned with lush trees.  Boston’s main focus is using plants and wildlife to promote living green.  In fact they have been working on engineering a plant that turn 50,000 tons of leaves into reusable energy or fertilizer.  They are one of America’s leading cities when it comes to using renewable compost.

4. Oakland, California

Oakland is most known for having the cleanest tap water in the US.  That alone speaks volumes for their overall irrigation system.  In addition, most Oaklanders carry on lifestyle where they value organic farming and locally grown produce.  It also prides itself in having the oldest wildlife shelter for animals and plants alike.

5. Eugene, Oregon

Not many of you have probably heard of this quirky city in Oregon, but for those of you who have, there is a reason why Eugene is called the Emerald City.  It has actually been one of the earliest green cities in the US.  You can tell by the abundance of greenery, beautiful neighborhoods lined with trees, and overall scenery that Eugene is green conscious.  It has won the award for having most sustainable public transit system with their hybrid transit.  Most of the streets in Eugene are constructed for bikers and other forms of Eco-friendly traveling.

Author loves to blog about topics relating to green living.  The writer currently works for Portland tree removal service.  In her free time she loves discovering new Eco DIY projects, reading up on organic and local produce, and supporting local farms and artisans. how to backup iphone to icloud .

Diversify Your Traffic Sources – Right Now!

The world of SEO has been the biggest boost to people all over the globe looking to build a business since the invention of commerce. Never before has it been possible for literally anyone with a dream, a laptop, and an internet connection to build a global business from scratch in as little as a few minutes. A worldwide business empire can be constructed inside of a year, and most of that have to do with the fact that companies like Google have made it easier and easier to get the kind of targeted traffic you need to your websites for as close to nothing as humanly possible.

But there is a bit of a double edged sword here – and while most of us online businesses were riding high on the SEO wagon just a few short months ago, the truth of the matter is that the ugly side of the SEO landscape has been exposed with the Panda and Penguin changes. These two major changes (and so many smaller ones) have shaken the SEO world to its very core, and exposed a fundamental truth that savvy business owners have known forever – you never put all of your eggs in a single basket.

Most people are running with a single source of traffic, and just waiting to get shut down

The old way of doing SEO involved a million and one different tricks, tools, and tactics to boost your rankings (either legally or illegally) in major engines like Google. And once we figured out the fundamentals to gaming the system, it was possible to bring up a site from pure obscurity and turn it into essentially an online printing press – we could make so much money from almost no work that it was scary. But those were the Wild West days of the internet, dead and gone for some time. Google and others understood that we had found the hot buttons to push to boost our rankings, and in their own best interest they began a process of shifting and changing the ranking systems at times that only they knew – with changes that only they were aware of. This has caused a dynamic shift in the culture of SEO, where what are SEO fundamentals today could be the worst things you could ever do to your site tomorrow – what once caused dramatic rises in the rankings could kill your site in the blink of an eye while just punching up a couple of lines of code.

It’s no longer safe to rely on a single source of traffic, even in something as fundamental to the web as SEO. Social media marketing and other traffic sources need to be pursued in at least a secondary capacity, to make sure that you are safe from a Google slap in the future. The old SEO world is dying – you need to be able to leverage all of the different traffic sources to stay relevant online today.

Joel Mayer is a professional writer from Australia. She loves sharing her Search Engine Optimisation Tips for www.australianwebmarketers.com.au

5 Of The Most Amazing Waterfalls In South America

South America is one of the 7 continents of the world. It is located on the western hemisphere and is bordered by the Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and North America. It has many countries which boast natural and architectural wonders, historical relics, stunning landscapes, colourful and vibrant cities and diverse culture and foods.

The natural wonders of South America include some of the most wonderful waterfalls you’ll be able to see anywhere in the world – here’s five of the best.

Iguazu

The Iguazu falls are among the 5 most amazing waterfalls in South America. These falls originate from Iguazu River and are considered to be among the new seven wonders of nature. They are located on the border of Brazil and Argentina and have many islands that divide them into numerous cataracts and waterfalls. Tremendous amounts of water thunder over cliffs to form an awesome, thick mist in the surrounding area – it is certainly a key stop for anyone thinking about organising either Argentina holidays or holidays in Brazil.

Angel Falls


Angel Falls, located in Venezuela, is the highest waterfall in the world with a plunge of 807 metres and a total height of 979 metres. Rapids and sloped cascades are formed as the waterfall drops over the edge of Mt. Auyantepui, in the south east of the country. One amazing feature of the falls is that it does not originate from a major river or lake. Rather, rainfall that is synonymous with tropical, equatorial climates accounts for all of Angel Falls’ discharge, which means that visiting during the wet season is strongly advised.

Kaieteur Falls

The Kaieteur Falls originate from River Potaro in Guyana, and while remote, are certainly worth a visit. Punging over 200 metres from conglomerate cliffs and sandstone before flowing over very steep cascades, the drop pool area of the waterfall forms a stunning semi circular overhanging break in the surrounding rainforest – making for one of the more spectacular waterfalls anywhere in the world. They are unique in that they combine both water volume and height – rare among waterfalls.

Semuc Champey


Another amazing waterfall is Semuc Champey in Guatemala. This stunning natural monument is surrounded by humid tropical forest inside a steep walled valley. It has a limestone bridge measuring about 300 metres with the River Cahabon passing under it. On top of the bridge there are a number of turquoise, stepped pools and small ponds full of crystalline, spring mountain water. Water from these pools rejoins the river as it falls at the end of the limestone bridge. The water of this awesome waterfall is known for its dark blue sapphire and light green emerald colouration.

Gocta Cataracts


The list is not complete without mentioning Gocta Cataracts located in Peru. These perennial waterfalls flow into River Cocahuayco and have two drops. The top drop is about 230 metres while the bottom drop is approximately 540 metres. Interestingly, the water from these cataracts does not hit the ground. Instead, it dissipates into a mist and swirls down eddies and waves creating a chilly wind of its own.

South America is a wonderful continent and each of its countries has something great to offer visitors. Most of those who visit this continent make a point of seeing these 5 amazing waterfalls. All these waterfalls resemble paradise inside a tropical jungle.

The author is a huge fan of South America and has blogged widely on subjects ranging from holidays in Argentina to the booming food scene in Peru