WHAT WE DO

Applicant’s Guide to the Grant Making Process

Our annual grant requests unlock opportunities to empower Cincinnati's educational future. While all requests will be considered, it is not possible to fund every proposal.

Key Grant Process Dates

Applicable Grant Period
September 2023 - April 2024

Letters of Inquiry and, upon invitation, proposals, may be submitted at your convenience. Our dedicated staff will promptly acknowledge receipt. However, it's important to note that proposals are formally reviewed and presented to our Board twice a year: during our primary review in June and for interim requests in March.

19 MAY 2023

Letter of Inquiry Received

9 JUN 2023

Full Proposal Received (If Invited)

28 JUN 2023

Board Grant Review Meeting (Tentative)

31 JUL 2023

Approval Letters Issued

Navigating Grant Requests

Our Board of Trustees is dedicated to the efficient and impactful allocation of our resources. We deeply value our longstanding partnerships while also striving to expand our role beyond the present. Our commitment to remaining accessible to new organizations and their innovative ideas is what fuels our vision for the future. We're quick to pick up on emerging trends that aim to elevate the quality of education and the lives of Cincinnati's young learners. To uphold our values and ensure equitable opportunities for all applicants, we follow an annual grant-making cycle. However, it's important to recognize our financial constraints. While we genuinely consider every request, regrettably, we cannot fund every proposal.

What We’re Looking For

Qualities of a Strong Woodward Trust Grant Candidate

When considering candidates for a Woodward Trust grant, we look for organizations that exhibit the following key characteristics:

1
Alignment with Our Mission

A strong candidate clearly aligns with one or more of our Need Components, demonstrating a shared commitment to addressing critical educational needs.

2
Identified Needs and Solutions

We value proposals that have identified specific needs and present viable, sustainable solutions to address them effectively.

3
Clarity and Purpose

It's important for grant candidates to have a well-defined purpose, complete with a clear timetable and a structured process for implementation.

4
Measurable Impact

It's important for grant candidates to have a well-defined purpose, complete with a clear timetable and a structured process for implementation.

5
Collaborative Approach

Strong candidates demonstrate the ability to coordinate efforts and, when appropriate, integrate their work with other organizations and initiatives. Collaboration is key to providing a strategic and comprehensive solution.

At Woodward Trust, we are eager to work with organizations that embody these qualities, and we welcome grant applicants who share our dedication to making a positive impact on education and the lives of students in Cincinnati.

Applicant's Guide to the Grant Making Process

STEP 1 — Letter of Inquiry Guidelines

Starting your journey to secure a grant from Woodward Trust is a straightforward process, beginning with the submission of a letter of inquiry. We encourage you to send a concise one-page informational letter, preferably in the form of an email to WoodwardTrust@hotmail.com. Below, we outline the key considerations for the information you may wish to include in your overview.

Organization

  • Describe your organization, its history, and any affiliations.
  • Highlight your organization’s expertise and experience in the relevant field.
  • Explain the extent of collaboration with other impactful organizations and initiatives, including participation in the STRIVE collaborative.
  • Provide a list of your current board members and officers.

Program

  • Clearly define the purpose and goals of your proposed program.
  • Articulate why there is a need for this program.
  • Outline both short-term and long-term impacts.
  • Provide a timeline, including key milestones.
  • Describe the program’s administration and responsible individuals.
  • Specify the target audience and geographical reach.
  • Explain your organization’s methodology for evaluating the program’s success.
  • Establish the program’s alignment with Woodward Trust’s Need Components.

Grant Requests

  • State the amount of funding you are requesting and your preferred schedule.
  • Detail how the funds will be allocated and utilized.
  • Present the total program budget.
  • Disclose any other proposed sources of funding and the status of their confirmation.

Next Steps

Upon receiving your letter of inquiry, we aim to send an acknowledgment within two weeks. Each submission is carefully reviewed by our staff to assess its alignment with our guidelines and the potential for further consideration. If additional information is required, our staff may reach out to you.

Based on the review of your letter of inquiry, our staff will determine if your program and grant request meet our baseline criteria. Depending on this evaluation, you may be invited to submit a full proposal. We will promptly notify you of this decision within four weeks, ensuring a transparent and efficient grant application process.

STEP 2 — Crafting Your Full Proposal

When you receive an invitation to submit a full proposal, you’re taking the next significant step in securing a grant from Woodward Trust. We make this process as accessible as possible, with our preferred format being one or more PDF files sent via email to WoodwardTrust@hotmail.com. In crafting your full proposal, we encourage you to include the considerations mentioned in the letter of inquiry Guidelines, along with any other information you believe is relevant to helping us comprehend and value your program.

Mandatory Proposal Inclusions:

  • Budgetary Details: Present a comprehensive overview of your organization’s overall budget, including projected income and its various sources.
  • Annual Report or Form 990: Include your organization’s most recent annual report or Form 990.
  • IRS Determination Letter: If applicable, provide your IRS Determination Letter demonstrating your Tax-Exempt Status as a 501c(3). While a significant portion of our grant recipients hold this status, it’s important to note that this is not a strict requirement for consideration or approval.

At Woodward Trust, we are committed to assisting you through this process and are eager to review your full proposal. Should you have any questions or require further assistance, please do not hesitate to reach out. Your dedication to enhancing education in Cincinnati is highly valued, and we look forward to collaborating with you.

STEP 3 — The Executive Director Review

Upon receiving your full proposal, we promptly acknowledge its receipt within two weeks. Our team carefully assesses each proposal to ensure it aligns with our guidelines and merits Board consideration. Depending on your proposal’s review, our Executive Director, in their sole discretion, decides if it proceeds to formal Board consideration. You’ll be informed of this decision within four weeks.

Should the Executive Director determine your proposal doesn’t align with our current priorities, it will be presented in the Grant Applications Pending Termination report to the Board, and you’ll be notified of the conclusion of your application. Your dedication to education in Cincinnati is highly appreciated, and we’re here to support you throughout this process. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out.

STEP 4 — Board Decision

When you receive an invitation to submit a full proposal, you’re taking the next significant step in securing a grant from Woodward Trust. We make this process as accessible as possible, with our preferred format being one or more PDF files sent via email to WoodwardTrust@hotmail.com. In crafting your full proposal, we encourage you to include the considerations mentioned in the letter of inquiry Guidelines, along with any other information you believe is relevant to helping us comprehend and value your program.

STEP 5 — The Grant Approval Process

Upon approval of a grant, we move forward with essential administrative tasks before disbursing the funds. Here’s an overview of what to expect:

Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

A detailed MOU is issued, outlining the terms and conditions of the grant. This document requires signatures from your organization’s Chief Executive Officer and approval from your organization’s Board of Directors.

USA-PATRIOT Act Compliance Certification

As part of our due diligence, we require compliance with the USA-PATRIOT Act.

Collaboration and Coordination

We work closely with your organization to finalize funding schedules, program timelines, updates, and any specific requirements outlined during the Board’s approval process.

Tailored Actions

Depending on the nature of your grant or any specific conditions set by the Board, there may be additional items or actions to address.

STEP 6 — Follow-Up Reporting and Billing

At Woodward Trust, we believe in the importance of transparency and accountability throughout the grant process. Here’s how we handle follow-up reporting and billing:

Progress Reporting

We generally request grant recipients to provide progress and results reports for their programs. This helps us maintain consistency and assess the impact of your initiative effectively.

Billing for Reimbursement

If your grant is structured as a reimbursement, we expect you to submit regular and timely bills supported by adequate documentation of your actual expenditures and activities. We strive to disburse funds within four weeks of receiving your properly supported billing.

Advance Grants

In cases where a grant assumes an advance, we require regular and timely reporting along with documentation of subsequent expenditures and activities. Typically, we consider subsequent advances of funds only after previous advances have been utilized, accounted for, and properly documented. Please note that advances remain the property of Woodward Trust until they are appropriately utilized, accounted for, and documented by the grant recipient. Unused advances or those not properly utilized may be subject to recall by Woodward Trust.

STEP 7 — Evaluating Program Performance

On a regular basis, as determined or requested by Woodward Trust, the grant recipient will be requested to provide written updates on the status of the program, particularly relative to proposed timelines and results. The Trust reserves the right to revoke, restrict or modify any grant not substantially meeting its proposed timeframes and results or otherwise out of compliance with the terms of the grant.

Grant Requests

Handling Immediate Education Needs

In situations where an immediate education need arises, necessitating urgent consideration, emergency requests are accepted and will receive prompt attention. At Woodward Trust, we understand the importance of addressing critical needs swiftly, and our team is here to assist you during such circumstances. If you find yourself in this situation or have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.