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Tool 1: Sample mini-grant guidelines

A sample guidelines section for preparing mini-grant proposals.


The purpose of the Health Action Minigrants Program is to support community groups' efforts to take action to prevent disease and promote health in Douglas County. These intentionally small grants (typical grants are approximately $1000) are designed to stimulate grassroots involvement in health promotion.

The Health Action Minigrants program is funded by a Kansas Health Foundation grant to the United Way of Douglas County. The Kansas Health Foundation is an independent nonprofit organization with the mission of improving the quality of health in Kansas . Grants will be awarded through the United Way of Douglas County.

The Health Action Minigrants Program is part of the Kansas Health Foundation's Kansas Initiative. The Kansas Initiative will provide support to community groups , such as coalitions and task forces, that are attempting to change policies, programs , personal competencies, or resources relevant to local health concerns. Consistent with the broader Kansas Initiative, the Health Action Minigrants Program will award grants in the following health areas: the prevention of cardiovascular disease, cancer , adolescent pregnancy, substance use, and maternal and child illnesses.

Eligible organizations

The Health Action Minigrants Program awards grants to projects or programs within Douglas County. The Program will consider proposals from groups, agencies, and organizations whose interests are consistent with the goals of the Program. The Program will not consider grant proposals for retroactive funding of projects already completed.

Types of projects eligible

The Health Action Minigrants Program will award grants for attempts to prevent the following health problems:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Cancer
  • Adolescent pregnancy
  • Substance use
  • Maternal and child illness

Eligible projects are those that attempt to change or develop new policies, programs , personal competence, or resources related to specified areas of local health concerns .

Types of projects preferred

Projects with significant involvement by community members who are affected by the health problem are given priority. For example, a project focusing on prevention of adolescent pregnancy should involve current or former teen mothers, or youth at risk for pregnancy. Projects in which 50% or more of the applicants are affected by the health problem will be given preference over those with less substantial involvement by the target population. Projects that encourage collaboration among community members and organizations are also given priority.

Types of projects not eligible

The following projects are not eligible: a) direct subsidy of care for the medically indigent; b) direct subsidy of existing services by community organizations; c) projects identified with political parties of any kind; d) projects sponsored by a for profit organization; e) organizations that practice discrimination of any kind; f) general contributions to capital campaigns; g) operating deficits or retirement of debt; h ) endowment programs; and i) construction projects or real estate acquisitions.

Application procedure

Applicants should complete and submit a mini-grant proposal. The proposal requests detailed information about the need for the project, its goals, plan of action, and a budget. The proposal should be accompanied by letters of support and resumes of applicants. Use a copy of the attached mini-grant proposal form for each project submitted for approval. Should the proposal be reviewed favorably, a memorandum of agreement which provides clarification or more information about the proposed project may be requested.

Review process and evaluation criteria

Submissions will be reviewed by designated representatives of the Kansas Health Foundation. Applicants will be contacted if further information is needed.

The following criteria will be used to evaluate proposals:

  • Significance - How well do the goals address local health concerns? How clearly are the goals and objectives stated? Are people most at risk targeted? How many people will benefit?
  • Action plan - How well defined is the action plan? How closely tied is the action plan with the stated goals? Are the actions designed to change behavior? Are community members who are affected by the health problem involved in the development of goals, objectives, and plans of action? Does the action plan involve collaboration among community members?
  • Likelihood of success - How feasible is the project in terms of time, budget requests , and available resources?

Please mail completed applications to:

Health Action Mini-grants Program
United Way of Douglas County
P.O. Box 116
Lawrence, KS 66044

Tool 2: Sample mini-grant application

A sample mini-grant application, including an action planning form.

Applicant Information

Applicant Name & Title:

Phone Number:
Project Title:
Contact Person:

Project goal

List the broad goal(s) of the proposed project:

Project objectives

List the specific objectives for the project. List the specific changes in policies, programs, personal competence, or resources that will result from this project. Specific aims should refer to outcomes or changes in the community that can reduce risk of the health problem.

Relevance to health concerns

Describe how the identified problem is relevant to Kansas Health Foundation Goals:

Self help/consumer involvement

Indicate how targeted health consumers (those affected by the health problem) are involved in setting goals, objectives, plans of action, and program implementation. Describe the people that will be affected by the project and where the project will take place.

Project action plan

List the steps needed to complete the project. Complete the Action Plan at the end of the application.

Project evaluation and maintenance

Describe how you will monitor progress to identify what works and what needs improvement. Indicate how continuation of the program will be secured after the grant.


Indicate how the project is important and innovative. Indicate how the target population's risk to the health problem is reduced as a result of the proposed project. Note how the community's capacity to meet the health goal is improved.


Briefly describe expected project costs.

  • Personnel (existing):
  • Personnel (new):
  • Operating Expenses: (e.g. printing, telephone, postage, materials)
  • Other Expenses (please identify)
  • Budget Total:
  • Other sources of funding for this project (list source and amount)
  • Other Resources Total

Budget justification

Provide an explanation for why each type of expense is needed .

  • Personnel (existing):
  • Personnel (new):
  • Operating Expenses (e.g. printing, telephone, postage, materials)
  • Other expenses:
Specific Objectives Action Date Target Actors Location Intended Outcome

Tool 3: Reviewer Rating Sheet

A sample sheet to help review committee members evaluation of applications you receive.

Instructions to the reviewer: Please rate each application on each of the four criteria below. For each criterion, assign a maximum of 25 points.

Then add all four ratings together, to arrive at the total point score.

  • Creativity: How creative is the proposal?
  • Feasibility: How feasible is the project in terms of time, budget, and available resources?
  • Significance: How well do the goals address local health concerns? Are people most at risk targeted? How clearly are the goals and objectives stated? How many people will benefit?
  • Action Plan: How well defined is the action plan? How closely tied is the action plan to the stated goals? Are the actions designed to change behavior? Are community members who are affected by the health problem involved in the development of goals , objectives, and plans of action?\
Application #

(out of 25)

(out of 25)

(out of 25)

Action Plan
(out of 25)

(out of 100 points)


Tool 4: Memorandum of Agreement (MOA)

A sample letter of agreement for applicants to sign before they are given their grant award.

This is an example of an Agreement between a mini-grant applicant and Project Freedom , the mini-grant sponsor. In this case, the applicant is asked to sign and submit a copy of the Agreement before the application is actually reviewed.

  • I will give Project Freedom a report of how the project went and what was accomplished no later than June 1, 20___.
  • I will return any money that I did not spend to Project Freedom by June 1, 20___ .
  • I will spend the money I get only on things I said I would in my budget. If I need to make changes, I will contact Project Freedom first.
  • This money is not being used to replace, or free up for other use, funds which are presently being used for substance use prevention.
  • I will let Project Freedom staff or mini-grant volunteers check up on my program any time they wish to see how it's going and how I'm spending my money.
  • If my program is youth focused, I will ask youths to be involved in making decisions about the project.
  • I will get the best photographs I can of my project and I will return the disposable camera that Project Freedom will give me. I understand that the photographs belong to Project Freedom and that they will be used to show others the benefits of the mini-grants program. I will tell Project Freedom if someone in my project does not want his or her picture used.
  • I will tell others that my project is being funded by Project Freedom's mini -grant program and I will put this on any written materials I develop for the project .
  • If I am part of an organization, then my signature indicate that I'm the one who has the right to enter into contracts with others for my organization.
  • I will let you check my background to see that all this information I've provided is true.

Please Sign Here:_________________________ Date:_____________

Thanks for your application!
If you are funded, we wish you great success!
If you are not funded, don't give up. Talk to someone at Project Freedom about your ideas and try again next year. We want to work with you!