A grant proposal requires a concise executive summary that explains the community problem as well as your solution. The executive summary is the first thing that potential grant funders read in a grant proposal. The recipients of your grant proposal will examine the summary to get a good idea of what your project's mission is and how it fits with the aims of the potential funders.

1. Step 1

Skip writing the executive summary until after the other parts of the grant proposal are either completed or at least well-drafted. A summary is an overview of the entire grant proposal, so you need to review all important facts and details.

2. Step 2

Check your funder's guidelines. The guidelines should give a specific length for the summary. You will want to be close to the recommended length, without going beyond the length limits.

3. Step 3

State the need and problems the nonprofit group is trying to address. Describe the how your grant project will help the problem or need. Give information on how the group came up with its course of action.

4. Step 4

Give information on how the program, once up and running, will be evaluated to determine if goals are being met.

5. Step 5

State the projected cost of the project. Make sure the cost given is reflected in the budget section of the grant proposal.

6. Step 6

Give a short description about your nonprofit. Include the a short history of the nonprofit that shows why the group is qualified to run the grant project.

7. Step 7

Tell the grant reviewer what you are seeking. Be as specific as possible on the amount of grant money you are seeking, along with a description of any nonmonetary contributions you are requesting.

8. Step 8

Show the grant reviewer how the funder's mission is addressed through your project. Many grant funders only give grant funding to specific projects. Find out what they are looking for before you apply for the grant.


Never cut and paste the summary from other parts of the grant proposal. Rewrite statements instead and hone factual material to fit the requirements of the executive summary.

Things You Will Need
  • Grant proposal

  • Mission statement

  • Budget outline