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Is Your Museum Grant-Ready?

Assessing Your Organization's Potential for Funding

Sarah S. Brophy

Is your institution grant-ready? This is a crucial question that almost every small museum or historic organization will find itself asking when considering grant funding, as it seeks to expand or improve programs, broaden its reach, or just simply maintain its existing level of performance. This succinct volume provides an accessible, step-by-step guide to assessing an organization's readiness for the grant application process, and includes seven real-life examples of institutions that have successfully achieved grant-readiness. Chapters will help assess readiness, and provide explanations and checklists to address the important components of this daunting process. Appendices contain proposal writing tips and a list of the author's favorite most-used resources. This innovative volume will be invaluable to museums, cultural institutions and students studying history or non profit work. « less more »
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers / AASLH
Pages: 160Size: 6 3/4 x 9 1/4
978-0-7591-0650-5 • Hardback • November 2005 • $99.00 • (£65.00)
978-0-7591-0651-2 • Paperback • November 2005 • $38.00 • (£24.95)
978-0-7591-1456-2 • eBook • November 2005 • $36.00 • (£24.95)
Sarah S. Brophy is a long-time freelance proposal writer for New England museums, tribes, municipalities and cultural resource organizations.
Introduction: Are You There Yet?
Chapter 1: From the Foundation's Point of View
Chapter 2: Developing Relationships
Case: A Working Relationship: The Ben B. Cheney Foundation & the Job Carr Cabin Museum
Chapter 3: Are You Grant-Ready?
Chapter 4: Why Do You Matter?
Case: Need and Uniqueness: Sandwich Glass Museum
Chapter 5: Why Are You The One?
Case: Commitment and Ability: The Prince Charitable Trusts & Save Blithewold, Inc.
Case: Partnership and Planning: Historic Georgetown, Inc.
Chapter 6: Why Project Money Will Be Your First Money
Case: Project Money as First Money: Westborough Historical Commission and The Nathan Fisher House
Case: Partnership, Uniqueness and Excellence: Conner Prairie and "Follow the North Star"
Chapter 7: How to Gain Traction
Case: Gaining Traction: Carlisle Historical Society
Chapter 8: Maintaining Momentum
Appendix A: Proposal Writing Tips
Appendix B: Resources
Sarah Brophy is a consummate professional with a proven track record. The Sandwich Glass Museum would not have built their new facilities without the $440,000 NEH grant she authored. It is quite generous of her to share her accumulated knowledge with so many—a quality that makes her not only a great author but a successful grants writer as well. Her personal style and good humor are reflected in her writing. I enjoyed phrases like 'Do lunch!' and 'Elevator Speech.' It is typical of her writing style that makes both this book and her grants such a success.
Bruce Courson, director, Sandwich Glass Museum

Thanks to Sarah Brophy for writing a lucid, thoughtful, and highly accessible book. Is Your Museum Grant Ready? is an information-packed action manual that brims with solid advice and valuable case studies. Any museum professional who plunges into the daunting waters of grant-seeking without reading it does so at his or her own peril.
Joseph Barbato, co-author, Writing for A Good Cause

This book is not just one more guide to grantwriting. It is a handbook for the whole organization to guide it through the process of raising its planning, performance, and systems to a new level: one that will support a strong case for philanthropic support. If your organization has a list of good projects that are struggling with inadequate funding, this book will be an invaluable guide and tool. Sarah Brophy can't do the work for you, but she certainly provides clear and smart guidance along the way.
Laura B. Roberts, Roberts Consulting

If your organization does not yet have a successful grant program, this is a must read book for directors and trustees. It illuminates why foundations give, what they expect from their investment in non-profit organizations, and how they build relationships with institutions. Brophy clearly articulates the steps it takes to get to the point where you can write a successful grant application and backs up her findings with specific case studies from museums across the United States and abroad. I recommend this book not only to museums but to any non-profit (cultural, educational, or social service) that needs to grow to the next level of professionalism in program design and grant writing.
Mara Williams Partner, Arts Bridge LLC, Vermont and New York, Partner, Arts Bridge LLC, Vermont and New York City, formerly, Director, Brattleboro Museum & Art Center (1989 - 98)

An engaging and practical guide worth the attention of any nonprofit professional pursuing foundation grants....Brophy has written a concise but comprehensive resource for novice or seasoned grant writers from all types of nonprofti organizations whose aim is to get foundation support. Moreover, it is among the most engaging and readable professional texts I have happened upon in a long while. I can heartily recommend that Is Your Muesum Grant Ready? should find a spot on the bookshelves of grant writers and proposal developers.
CharityChannel, October 2008