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The Grant Writing Process 

The grant writing process follows a linear lifecycle that includes finding the funding opportunity, applying, accepting and setting up award decisions, and successfully implementing and monitoring the award. 

The Grant Lifecycle

The specific actions along the lifecycle are grouped in three main phases:

Lifecycle Phases

The applicant or recipient and awarding agency have unique roles in each stage. The duration of an award may vary depending on the nature of the project.


Pre-Award Phase

In the early stages of the grant process, the grant-making agency plans and develops a funding program based on its mission, the Administration, and congressional initiatives.

Next, the grant-making agency formally announces the funding opportunity, advertising it to applicant communities and inviting proposals tailored to address the program mission. The grant-making agency will publish details of the funding opportunity on

Award Phase

When the review process has been completed, the funding agency notifies the applicants whether or not they have been awarded a grant. The agency also begins working with the award recipient to finalize the legal framework for the funding agreement. Following this, the funds are disbursed.

After an applicant receives a Notice of Award and the funds have been disbursed, they will begin their project. The award recipient is responsible for meeting the administrative, financial, and programmatic reporting requirements of the award.


Post-Award Phase

After an award has been disbursed, a grants management officer at the funding agency oversees an awardee's reporting compliance. This process extends across the life of the grant award and involves reviewing reports submitted by the awardees. Representatives from the grantor agency may perform on-site visits with the project director and implementation staff. 

As reports and financial data are passed along to the grantor agency, the program stakeholders ensure that all requirements are being met. Upon completing all the closeout requirements, including a review of the final financial and technical reports from the awardee, the grant lifecycle comes to an end.

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