When was the last time you gave someone cash? There’s no point. We could find someone with a bank account, phone number, and a driver’s license. There are better ways to get your hands around that. The people I work with are not people who can afford to give people money. They can buy a ticket somewhere and get to it.
Forget about “giving” anything to individuals or organizations. The money goes to projects that impact everyone, and projects that help everyone. Most grants work that way. Projects that require a certain number of dollars in order to make progress are never a good use of grant funds, so no one funds them. Those funds go to the people who need it most—or, in some cases, to the projects that aren’t even getting done.
A big part of what keeps Grant’s funding steady is the fact that he works with a diverse set of organizations from across the world. Many of the groups that Grant funds have never had contact with one another. Each organization has its own project manager, its own staff, its own budget, its own processes, and its own people in charge of working with the grant funds. Because of the diverse nature of his grant funds, Grant can look for and hire people who are also good at working with a grant fund. He knows what he’s doing. (Not all grant funds, by the way. Many are designed to provide money to a group or organization for a specific project for a specific number of years.) That creates a lot of opportunities for people like me to get involved.
Grant is also very organized and strict about who he lets through. He screens people very quickly. Some people have the patience of a saint, but they have to get their check book and all. (Grant’s budget can go down to $40,000—the typical amount spent on a local grant, according to the Association of Community Development Grantmakers.) Grant also is very specific about who gets help and who doesn’t, and he’ll talk to you and offer to explain why you need help so you don’t waste a valuable opportunity. He is very thorough and careful about who he hires to help with projects, and he is willing to pay for people to come to the organization and work with them. This is especially helpful in situations where money is limited and getting help isn’t possible.
Grant has no interest in having people that don’t understand what he’s talking about just sit back and “take the money,” even if that is what you
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