Non-profits have the key challenge of doing great things with a shoestring budget. Volunteer effort goes so far to accomplish key tasks or those that require specialist talent. A great example: web design for non-profits like museums, music festivals and other community events. One avenue to delivering a website is by hiring a professional funded through a Community Gaming Grant from the Sports, Recreation, Arts and Culture ministry.
We did a quick scan for funding sources and some programs have annual deadlines:
- https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/governments/multiculturalism-anti-racism/multiculturalism/multiculturalismgrants (the funding window is closed)
- https://heritagebc.ca/funding/heritage-legacy-fund/ (the funding window is closed)
British Columba’s Community Gaming Grant program supports ongoing community programs. Maintaining or upgrading a website is part of the cost involved in running the program. During the past few years with public health closures, many organizations have upgraded their websites and begun offering online courses, digital performance experiences and other virtual programming. Community organizations have sought grants to help fund their website design and development. A well-designed website greatly enhances the online presence and reach of a community organization, helping it to better serve its constituents and engage with the public.
When applying for a grant to fund a website design, demonstrate the need for the website upgrade: the benefits, the new features, functionality, opportunities and the impact the new site will have on the organization and the community it serves. Grant proposals should outline the scope of the project, including the design, development and hosting costs, a WordPress support maintenance plan, and a timeline and budget for the project.
It is also important to emphasize the expertise and experience of the website design team, showcasing the team’s portfolio and highlighting any relevant certifications and awards. A well-written grant proposal should clearly articulate the benefits and return on investment that the community organization will receive from the grant funds.
Costs related to upgrades are typically an eligible use of grant funds, but very rarely are considered as a wholly separate program. A Community Gaming Grant to fund a website design can be a rewarding process. It allows organizations to secure the funds they need to enhance their online presence and engage with the public in new and innovative ways.
Stand-alone projects may be considered under smaller Capital Projects funding stream which supports projects that cost between $20,000 – $250,000. This is a competitive stream and requires matching funds be available at the time of application. Applicants can see who has received a capital project and the amounts awarded on the Sports, Recreation, Arts and Culture’s reporting webpage (scroll down to ‘See who received a Capital Project Grant in previous years’). The reporting shows that there have been a few in the past couple of years.
The programs and projects funded by the Community Gaming Grant are community-driven. This means that they don’t fund based on government priorities, or have preferences for the types of programs funded; rather, the applicant demonstrates that what they are doing fills a community-identified need.
Non-profits can reach out to program officers and ask for assistance with their applications. They can then review the file history, including previously approved programs and provide the best-individualized advice to each applicant.
Web321 has helped a number of non-profits deliver grant-funded projects. We can help with the prep work and speak to what serves a non-profit, its audience and its community best. Likewise, we can be there to support the non-profit in managing their website and delivering on their mandate.