International Grant Resources
by C. Hope Clark

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Grants are the candy income that writers dream of. We envision a fellowship that pays all of our obligations for at least a year, while we write, write, write. Not a week passes by that FundsforWriters does not get an email asking how to pluck one of those babies from the money tree.

Alas, the money tree is not very big and its branches are way, way over most peoples' heads. It takes long arms to reach them and that usually means a publication history. But grants are a superb goal to strive for down the road.

Grants, however, tend to gravitate to the affluent countries with the greatest concentration in English-speaking nations. What about those writers in Europe, Asia, Africa, the East, and South America?

Grants do exist for the international population. They focus on health, community development, education, and other social causes with a few available for cultural development. With the Internet you would think the information readily available, but few sites carry these opportunities except the sponsors themselves, who have no need to advertise. You need diligence and motivation, but with a little of each, you will find your financial sponsor. Let's start with the Internet resources that cater to international grant seekers:

European Foundation Centre

Updated regularly, this site lists European foundations that offer grant assistance. Each foundation has specific purposes for its funds, so expect to spend some time reading each grant site thoroughly. Read the actual grants already distributed to learn what entices the grantors to write the checks.

What may surprise you is that these foundations often do not limit themselves to the country in which they physically reside. The King Baudouin Foundation has a Belgium address, yet they distribute funds internationally. This foundation has a current interest in social causes, governance, civil justice and philanthropy development. To some that means no writing grants. But if you can wrap the subject of your writing into one of these topics, you just might land a grant to not only get your work written but also to assist in improving conditions somewhere in the world. Your words might be the tools others need to reach an end. Thing wide, think deep, and think outside the box.
http://www.efc.be/

FundersOnline

FundersOnline touts itself as Europe's online source of philanthropic communities. However, once you delve into its database, you'll find foundations and funding sources from all over the world and on all continents. The search and find feature is decent in that you do not have to waste your time reading all information on all foundations to find what you need.
http://www.fundersonline.org/englisch/

The Synergos Institute

Find grant opportunities in Latin America, Central America and the Caribbean. You will find American foundations as well, but they are internationally connected with grant reaches outside the United States. [Editor's note: This site no longer seems to be maintaining lists of foundations, but offers a great deal of interesting information in its library section: http://www.synergos.org/knowledge/

The Philippine Association of Foundations

This center is thirty years old and represents 134 non-government organizations (NGOs) and foundations: http://www.pfconline.org

Consider this foundation center the Southeastern equivalent of the US Foundation Center. It provides an excellent starting point for grant seekers in that part of the world and receives part of its own funding from the Ford Foundation.

The Japan Foundation Center

Consider this extensive grant listing in Japan.
http://www.jfc.or.jp/eibun/e-links.html

F&P Funding Center

This site focuses on grants made to scholars and students in Russia and NIS.
http://www.friends-partners.org/friends/funding/index.html

The Foundation Center

United States-based, the Foundation Center keeps its finger on the pulse of global philanthropy and has some resources of its own. Its international data is located at:
http://foundationcenter.org/findfunders/

Anyone who has written grants understands the wealth of information and accuracy of data from this organization, which serves as the heart of the philanthropic world.
http://foundationcenter.org/

FundsNet

This site has the greatest database of international grant makers known. The main site has wonderful information on grants -- anywhere. But this particular location on global grantors gives a brief description of each one including whether or not they lean toward cultural funding, which saves you time in your research.
http://www.fundsnetservices.com

The Grantsmanship Center

Another well respected website, the Grantsmanship Center carries a database that includes all continents and countries. This page takes you to the general vicinities and you take it from there. The foundations and organizations are listed alphabetically but do not list focus or mission. You have to click on each one to learn the grantmaking direction.
http://www.tgci.com/funding.shtml

Welcome Europe

Welcome Europe gives you access to grant makers not just in Europe but on fringe countries as well.
http://www.welcomeurope.com

Please note that many grants go to groups, not individuals. As we preach at FundsforWriters, just because a grant restricts applicants to groups does not mean that you cannot reach the funds. Actually, many of the individuals that receive writing grants acquire them through a fiscal agent or group sponsor. They apply to a group to sponsor them in order to complete a project, book or other career endeavor. Obtaining a fiscal agent is a common practice and quite successful for many writers. Make sure that your writing project or goals somehow partner with the vision of the group, and you just might land that dream grant.

Grants do exist at the international level. Use them to travel, to research or, occasionally, to support uninterrupted writing time. With a little sweat and research, you might find the entity that likes what you are trying to accomplish. The world is a global community, and if a grant does not exist in your home country, you still have options. Remember than many grant makers reach around the world and want to help you make a difference.

Find Out More...

Grants, Fellowships, & Residencies - Megan Potter
http://www.writing-world.com/business/grants.shtml

They'll Pay Me to Write my Novel? Six Steps to Help You Win a Fiction Grant - Elizabeth Creith
http://www.writing-world.com/business/ficgrant.shtml

Writing-World.com's Links to Grants and Grant-Writing
http://www.writing-world.com/links/grants.shtml

Helpful Sites:

Wings Web
http://www.wingsweb.org

Copyright © 2004 C. Hope Clark
This article may not be reprinted without the author's written permission.


C. Hope Clark is editor of Fundsforwriters, a family of funding newsletters for writers ranging from kids to serious career scribes: http://www.fundsforwriters.com. She is the author of The Shy Writer: An Introvert's Guide to Writing Success and Funds for Writers: The Book

 

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