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Funding How-To Guide

Searching for funding opportunities can be overwhelming. Follow these steps to make searching and finding relevant funding a little easier.


Step 1: Search for Funding Opportunities

The easiest and least expensive method to search for available grant opportunities is through the web.  Most every funding source maintains a website with a link to their grant or community giving programs.  Through simple web searches, a grant seeker can quickly locate opportunities for review.  Check out these lists of Federal databases and foundation resourcesOther funding resources are also available and include links to research and education opportunities.

Step 2: Subscribe to ListServs and Funding Alerts

Subscribing to ListServs and Funding Alerts can be valuable because they bring the information straight to your email inbox. Here are some you can subscribe to:

  • Email Susan Craft at NCBiotech to receive a weekly email with funding opportunities for researchers, students, teachers and businesses.
  • For notification on federal grant opportunities, sign-up with  A grant seeker can choose to receive alerts via an RSS feed or through tailored email based on the grant seeker's specific funding criteria.
  • For foundation funding opportunities and philanthropy news, sign-up for free newsletters with the Foundation Center.

Step 3: Search Awarded Proposal Databases

Once you find funding opportunities with a specific funder, research the funder's awarded proposal database, if available, to identify previous awards made and examples of successfully funded projects. This information can help the grant seeker decide what funding to apply for and if the funder's priorities align with their funding priorities.  The Center provides an Awarded Proposal Databases list to help the grant seeker quickly navigate to several databases where awarded information is maintained.

Step 4: Other References and Resources

Several other resources are available to the grant seeker in searching for and submitting grants. If you need help drafting a proposal, there are free online references for proposal writing. Although most grant workshops are not free, if you are new to grant seeking then it may be worth attending a workshop, which will familiarize you with the entire grant process.  Valuable and free information in searching for grants and understanding the grant submission process is often available through established university grant office website pages.  These resources, some of which have been identified by the Center, provide a comprehensive look of what it typically takes to develop and submit a grant.  The external business funding page also provides web links to businesses looking for anything from venture capital to how to draft a business plan.

  • If you are interested in learning how to develop and write a grant proposal, the Grant Training Center offers a variety of workshops and online instruction to help you get started or fine-tune your proposal development skills!
  • Foundation Center Webinars are offered for foundation fundraising, proposal writing, and all that goes into getting the grants you need.