What I Care (and Write Best) About

Arts and Cultures Support
Climate Change 
Criminalization of Poverty
Differently Abled People 
Domestic Violence
Equitable Health Care Access
Equity in Education 
Freedom of Opportunity
Housing & Food Insecurity 
Immigrants & Refugees 
Indigenous Cultures 
Inter-Generational Poverty 
Social & Racial Justice
Two Spirits & LGBTQIA 
Youth & Teen Mental Health
Women & Children 

The Simplest Philosopy? Do Work that Matters!

I am Elizabeth Madrigal, a lifelong writer and the owner of Woman on the Good Side. My experience in crafting government and foundation grant proposals spans 30 years. In collaboration with community groups, civic organizations, faith communities and nonprofits, my work has helped raise millions of grant dollars that continue to support Good Works throughout Southwest Washington and the Portland Metro area. I believe that together we have great power to combat poverty, improve education, advance the wellbeing of all people and meaningfully address climate change.

The good news is grants are being awarded. The challenge is that 95% of calls for proposals are highly competitive. Successful grant proposals must connect by being not only compelling and authentically written but with the right audience in mind. Grant reviewers are risk-averse and notorious for favoring the familiar, but a proposal that is logical, convincing and resonates deeply can overcome bias. To be clear, there is no magic formula or "one size fits all" in this work. Every grant should be customized to represent the client's voice, values, programming and impact. Additionally, a proposal must be structured to address the specifics requested by the Grantor. The tricky part is that Grantors have questions they may not ask on the application. Those will come up in the grant review panels, and if unanswered in your narratives, they can sink your application. When a grant proposal contains authentic content, compelling narratives, shows impact, fully documents need and engages the grant reviewers, the odds of being awarded rise dramatically. 

It is disappointing when a grant application is not awarded, but strategically? A competitive grant proposal has other value. It may lead to an invitation to submit a new proposal, influence Grantors to fund outside their comfort zone in the future or gain the Grantor's attention for the following year's grant cycle. Brochures, websites and online fundraising should generate the same excitement. Telling your organization's story well  attracts attention, inspires volunteers, increases donors' generosity and engages the philanthropic community for greater support. If your organization lacks the expertise to write a strong grant proposal or great website content, invest in a professional.