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Grant Application FAQs

Applying for a Grant

Application System FAQs

Application Access

 
Where is the link to the application?

The application is accessible only via an emailed link. Once you call us to discuss your proposal, the foundation staff member you spoke to will email you the link. If you can’t find the email, just call or email us and we’ll resend it.

How do I get the link to the application?

The first step in our grant process is a phone call from you to us to discuss your proposal. Once we’ve determined that your request is a fit for our priorities, we’ll send you an email with a link to the grant application.

How do I log on?

The first time you log on, you’ll select “New Applicant” to start. This will take you to a screen where you’ll enter your email address (which will be your login ID) and set up a password. Once that’s done, you can start filling out your application. Anytime you apply you will use these credentials.

Will the link you send me be the same one I use if I apply again?

It may or may not, depending on what type of grant you’re looking for. We have different applications for different types of grants (for example, program grants, capacity building grants, and general operating grants.) Each has its own link. So please contact your program officer when you want to apply, and she’ll email you the correct link.

Once I have the link, can I apply anytime without calling?

No, we would like to discuss your project and make sure it is a fit before you spend time filling out the application. Please do call us before completing an application.

Will my logon credentials change every time you send me a new link to the application?

No. Once you’ve set up your login ID and password, you’ll be able to use them every time you sign on to the system.

What if I forget my password?

You can reset your password by clicking the Forgot Password? link in the login screen.

 

Entering Information

 
Will I have to re-enter background information about my organization each time I apply?

The first time you apply using our new system, you’ll have to enter all the information. When you reapply in the future, you will be able to populate the organizational fields with data from your last application. However, we do ask that you review the data and update anything that’s changed, particularly the description of your organization. While the history of your agency doesn’t change, other factors may: the towns you serve, the programs you operate, the number of staff you employ and clients you serve. We’d like to make sure we have the latest information when we’re making a grant decision.

The first time you apply on the system, we ask that you include all of the documents listed. For subsequent grants, we won’t need you to resend items like your 501(c)(3) letter. You can tell which information is required in order to submit your application by looking for a red asterisk beside the field or the document name.

Can I cut information on my desktop and paste into your application?

Absolutely!

What if a question on the application is not applicable to my request?

If it’s a text field, you can simply enter “not applicable.” If it’s a check box or other type of field, you can just leave it blank. Please note, though, that fields marked with a red asterisk must be completed in order to submit your application.

What if I have more information to supply than is allowed by the word count?

We set the word counts on our text fields based on the amount of information we’re used to seeing on our existing grant applications. Please try to keep your narrative within the word count; longer is not necessarily better! If you feel that you absolutely must provide more narrative than there is room for on the application, please email it to your program officer.

What do the red asterisks on the application signify?

Red asterisks signify fields that must be completed in order for you to submit your application. If you leave any of them blank, you’ll get an error message telling you to go back and fill them out.

 

Documents

 
What if my organization does not produce a document your application requests?

If you don’t have a requested document, you can upload a document in its place explaining that you don’t have the item requested. If you plan to obtain and submit the requested doc at a later date, please let us know when you expect to send it. Please note that documents with an asterisk next to them are required in order to submit your request.

Is there a special format required for documents I upload?

We prefer that you stick to documents in PDF, Word, or Excel format. We aren’t equipped to open other document types.

 

Navigation

 
What are the tabs that appear across the top of the page?

Those are links to each section of the application.

How do I go back and review my application before I submit it?

You can use tabs at the top of the page to return to sections you have already completed. Before you submit your app, please click the “Save and Finish Later” button at the bottom of the page. This will save your work and your will receive a confirming email. (Please Note: clicking this button automatically returns you to the main “Applications” page. We are currently working with the vendor to add a “Save” button that will keep you on the page where you are working. We apologize for any inconvenience.)

When you return to your application you will also see error messages at the top of the page if you skipped items or completed them incorrectly. Once everything is shipshape, you can click “Submit” and your application will be on its way to us. You’ll receive an email from MicroEdge to tell you it was submitted; it will include a copy of the application.

I clicked the back button and the system logged me out. What should I do?

Uh-oh. The back button is a no-no in this system; in effect, it kicks you out. You’ll have to log back in. Unfortunately, if this happens while you’re inputting information and you haven’t saved it, it will be lost and you’ll have to re-enter it. As you work, be sure to hit “Save and Finish Later” so you won’t lose your work. And remember: use the navigation tabs at the top of the application screen to move from page to page.

I clicked the ‘Save and Finish Later’ button and the system logged me out. What should I do?

Actually, you’re still logged in, and will find yourself on the “Applications” page. Just click the link to the application you were working on to resume. Then, you can use the tabs at the top of the screen to return to the page you were working on. Sorry…we know that this is not optimal, and we’ve asked our vendor to add a Save button that doesn’t change your location, but for now Save and Finish Later is the only way to save your app. Use it frequently, as our system doesn’t autosave.

How do I save my work? Will the ‘Save and Finish Later’ button log me out?

“Save and Finish Later” won’t log you out, but it does return you to the main application page. Simply click the link for the application on which you were working to resume. Then, use the navigation tabs at the top to return to the page you were working on.

 

Roadblocks

 
I clicked on “Submit” but the system will not accept my application. What should I do?

If you can’t submit your application, chances are something is missing or incorrect. Scroll to the top of the screen, and you should see error messages telling you which items need your attention. Once you’ve addressed all of them, you should be able to submit. If you find you still can’t, please call us and we’ll figure it out together.

Why does the system keep rejecting the information I entered in a percentage field?

Your numeric entries into a percentage field MUST total to 100%. You can click the "Other” choice as a catchall for figures you don’t have.

Why will the system not upload one of my documents?

If you have trouble with an upload, scroll up to check the top of the uploads page for an error message. It may be that the total size of all the documents you’ve uploaded exceeds the limit. If you don’t see an error message, there may be a system issue; please try your upload again later. If it still doesn’t work, just email the doc to your program officer.

Can I make any changes to information or a document I have submitted?

No; once the application has been submitted, you can’t change it. If you need to make a change—for example, you need to correct something erroneous—contact your program officer. She can return the application to you for editing, after which you can resubmit it.

 

Communications

 
If I need to email you about my application, what address should I use?

Just email your program officer, as usual.  Our email addresses are:

Who is MicroEdge?

MicroEdge was the name of the company that originally created our application system. You may still see the MicroEdge name on emails you receive from the system; please do open them, as they will contain information about your application.

How often will MicroEdge contact me?

Communications with the MicroEdge name are in response to work you do on our system; for example, you’ll get an email if you successfully saved or submitted an application. That’s the only time you should hear from MicroEdge.

How can I submit suggestions to make the user experience better?

Please email us with your suggestions; we’re glad to have your input. If it’s something related to the system itself, we can share them with our vendor.

 

Housekeeping

 
Those answer fields are really small. How can I get a better look at the answer I am entering?

Fields where you’re entering lots of text will usually have a little square icon to the right of the entry field. You can click that icon to expand the box so you can see more of your text, and scroll up and down in it.

Is there a way to spell check my work?

In the long text fields—for example, the ones where you answer questions about your project—you’ll see a red check mark next to the box in which you are typing. Just click it to spell check your work.

How do I keep a copy of what I submit to you?

Whenever you save or submit your application, you will receive an email containing a copy of it.

What if I need to see what I have submitted?

Whenever you save or submit your application, you will receive an email containing a copy of it. You can refer to that copy. Or, you can log in to the application system and open your app at any time. Please note that once you submit your app, you won’t be able to make any further changes to it.

What if I am applying for a grant you’ve funded before? Do I have access to my previous application entries?

We don’t have the ability to show you applications you filed before February 1, 2019 (sorry—we would have liked to do that). However, any online application you submit thereafter will be available for you to look at. We are currently developing a simplified process for repeat grants.

 

Application Completion FAQs

Eligibility

 
Do I still need to submit a complete application if you have previously funded the program I am applying for?

With the introduction of our new online system, we are asking all of our grantees to submit complete applications with all requested supporting documents the first time they apply. When you reapply for the same program, you’ll use a simplified process. You also won’t need to upload all the supporting documents, either; usually, for a repeat grant, we only need an updated program budget. Your program officer can advise you of the documents we need.

 

Deadlines

 
What are your 2019 grant application deadlines?
Grant Application Deadline For Review By
November 1, 2018 February 20, 2019
March 1, 2019 June 19, 2019
July 1, 2019 October 16, 2019
What happens if I have not completed my application by the deadline?

Generally speaking, if you don’t complete your application by the deadline, it will be held over for review in the next grant cycle. Please contact your program officer if you are having trouble finishing on time.

 

Clarification on Information Requested

 
When you ask for "number of persons served," do you mean the number served by my agency or just served by the program I am seeking funding for?

We need this information for both groups. Where you enter information about your agency as a whole, tell us the total number served by your agency. Once you enter the section where you describe your program, this is where you will enter the number served by the program.

Why do you ask if we receive "support from the United Way?" Does this disqualify us from consideration?

Absolutely not. It’s helpful for us to know if your agency was able to meet United Way standards for support.

Why do you ask about the "ethnic makeup of our board or directors" or trustees?

We are committed to serving diverse populations. Having directors or trustees of the same background as your clients tells us that there is effort on your part to include decision makers who understand the people you serve.

You ask for "program income and expenses" but we don’t know yet where all the money is coming from. What should we do?

Please list all funders you have approached for support of your project and the amount requested along with a notation regarding whether the funding has been received or is pending. Please also give us your projections of other sources of funds you expect to realize from, for example, fundraising events, pledge campaigns, program fees, etc.

What do you consider "other pertinent demographic data" relating to our population served?

We’re looking for any demographics you track that will help us to further understand those you serve. This could be, for example, age, ethnicity, marital status, income level, age, town of residence, special needs, school attendance, eligibility for free/reduced price school lunch. This will give us a better idea of how well your program matches our funding priorities.

What if we do not track a lot of "data?"

Please provide the best statistics you have on the demographics of your clients. If you would like to provide additional anecdotal information about your clients, please do, but mark it as such.

Why do you ask if the "program" is new or ongoing?

Ongoing programs have more of a track record and should be able to provide more data as to their effectiveness. However, we would not rule out a program for funding simply because it is new.

You ask for "specific outcomes" relating to program measurement. What are you looking for?

We need to see some kind of yardstick you will use to measure your results and determine whether you accomplished what you set out to do. Since we’ll be asking you for a report on your grant one year after it has been awarded, you should think in terms of outcomes that you can reasonably expect to achieve by that time.

For example, an after-school program that promotes school success for children aged 12–14 might look for these outcomes:

  • Improvement in school grades — measurable by reviewing report cards before and after the program
  • Improved performance on standardized tests (such as CMT) — comparison of scores before/after program
  • Improved attendance at school, reduced tardiness, reduced incidences of disciplinary problems — measurable by school records and/or teacher surveys before/after program

Here are some examples of “outcomes” we’ve seen listed on applications that don’t seem meaningful to us:

  • Pre- and post-surveys of parents and/or students
(Don’t get us wrong —we have nothing against surveys, and we’ve frequently seen them used successfully for measuring outcomes. But the survey itself isn’t an outcome —it’s a measurement tool. Describe for us what you plan to measure with your survey.)
  • Hold four forums on substance abuse prevention, with attendance of 200 students.(This is a program activity, not an outcome. If your stated goal is to affect the students’choices about substance abuse, that’s what needs to be measured.)
  • Student/parent satisfaction surveys about the program 
(The fact that program participants are satisfied with the program doesn’t necessarily mean that the program has achieved its goals.)

We realize that measuring outcomes can be challenging. Keep in mind that the question you’re trying to answer is, “Did we achieve the goals we set for this program?” Any outcomes you measure should lead you to that answer.

What if my agency does not produce an "annual report?"

When you reach this point in the application process, please simply upload a document stating that you do not produce an annual report.

What if my agency does not have a "financial statement?"

We understand that some agencies are too small to require a formal financial audit. However, we do expect that you keep some type of financial records. Ideally, we would like to see a statement of financial position (balance sheet), statement of activities and changes in net assets (income statement), and statement of cash flows. These should reflect the most recently completed fiscal year.

How do I select the right "geographic region" for my program?

If your program serves the entire state of Connecticut, select that option. If your program serves all of Liberty Bank’s service area, select that option. If it serves a region or regions within Liberty’s service area, you can check up to 3 of the remaining regions. Regions are defined below.

Liberty Bank Service Area: Middlesex and New Haven Counties, as well as the towns of Andover, Berlin, Bozrah, Bristol, Colchester, Columbia, Coventry, East Hartford, East Lyme, Franklin, Glastonbury, Groton, Hartford, Hebron, Lebanon, Lyme, Manchester, Mansfield, Marlborough, Montville, New Britain, New London, Newington, Norwich, Old Lyme, Plainville, Rocky Hill, Salem, Shelton, Southington, Stonington, Waterford, West Hartford, Wethersfield, and Windham.

Middlesex County: Chester, Clinton, Cromwell, Deep River, Durham, East Haddam, East Hampton, Essex, Haddam, Killingworth, Middlefield, Middletown, Portland, Old Saybrook, Westbrook

Greater New London: East Lyme, Groton, Lyme, Old Lyme, New London, Stonington, Waterford

Hartford County: Berlin, Bristol, East Hartford, Glastonbury, Hartford, Manchester, Marlborough, New Britain, Newington, Plainville, Rocky Hill, Southington, West Hartford, Wethersfield

Naugatuck Valley: Ansonia, Bethany, Beacon Falls, Derby, Middlebury, Milford, Orange, Oxford, Naugatuck, Prospect, Seymour, Shelton, Southbury, Waterbury, West Haven, Wolcott, Woodbridge

Greater New Haven (Branford, Cheshire, East Haven, Guilford, Hamden, Madison, Meriden, New Haven, North Branford, North Haven, Wallingford

Norwich/Willimantic: Andover, Bozrah, Colchester, Columbia, Coventry, Franklin, Hebron, Lebanon, Mansfield, Montville, Norwich, Salem, Windham/Willimantic

 
 

Additional Help

If you’re stuck, call or email us and we’ll do our best to get you un-stuck!

Sue Murphy, Executive Director, (860) 638-2959
Toral Maher, Senior Program Officer, (860) 638-2961
Jane Brosnan, Program Associate, (860) 704-2181