grant rejections

Unfortunately rejections will happen – both in your personal life and your professional life.

When it comes to applying for grants, rejections can be particularly dejecting.

But a “no” from a potential funder doesn’t have to be the end of the process.

Here are our top 10 recommendations on what you should do with a rejection letter from a funder:

  1. Don’t take it personally. They rejected your proposal – not you.
  2. Call the funder to see if they can offer any insights on why the proposal was not funded.
  3. Request a copy of the reviewer’s comments.
  4. Ask if you can resubmit in the next funding cycle and how you can strengthen your proposal.
  5. Extend an invitation for them to tour your facility and see your programs in action.
  6. Research the Competition. Learn from the strengths of other proposals and try to apply that to your grant writing.
  7. Take copious notes. Keep track of the feedback you have received so that you can reference this when your next proposal is due.
  8. Move on – go back to your potential funding matrix and select another proposal to knock out of the park!
  9. Ask for another set of eyes. Make sure you have someone else read your proposal to ask questions and strengthen the language from an outside perspective.
  10. Hire a professional to review your proposal before you press submit.

We wish we could tell you that you will receive a successful award letter for every grant that you submit. Sadly, that isn’t reality. However, how you handle the rejection will make a big difference.

We have had our fair share of rejection letters, but getting that one successful reward letter makes it all worthwhile. Take a deep breath and follow the steps above.

As part of Bloomerang’s Content Donation Program, $100 was donated to Impact One Breast Cancer Foundation.


Jarrett Ransom, MBA
Jarrett started The Rayvan Group in 2009 and brings more than 15 years’ experience with international, national and local organizations, including Girls Golf of Phoenix, Habitat for Humanity, the Paraiso Project and St. Mary's Food Bank. She has successfully managed development and communications functions for more than 10 campaigns with a combined goal totaling $6 million. She is passionate about creating community, empowering others to see and exceed their full potential, and crafting compelling stories in support of mission-driven organizations. Jarrett holds an MBA in business from the University of Phoenix and Certificate of Grant Writing from The Grantsmanship Center Institute. Awards include Greater Phoenix Athena Nominee, AmAZing Women of Arizona recipient and the Global Women's Summit Leadership Award.