Grant Writer

Request for Proposals

Context

DataKind is a global nonprofit dedicated to harnessing the power of data science and artificial intelligence (AI) in the service of humanity. Named one of Fast Company's 2017 top 10 innovative nonprofits, DataKind teams talented pro bono experts from academia and industry with visionary changemakers to collaboratively design innovative solutions to tough social challenges. We help social organizations apply their data to predictive analytics, machine learning algorithms, and AI needs in a way that both increases impact and prioritizes ethics.

See below for more information about our work and community. 

Project Description

Reporting to the Senior Manager of Partnerships, the Grant Writer will be responsible for creating four (4) final grant reports to funders and preparing a number of Letters of Inquiry (LOI) for prospective funding partners. Producing compelling and comprehensive reports is a milestone in the funder experience with DataKind and supports partnership renewal efforts.

The successful applicant will be provided with all necessary supporting documentation, clear direction on required content, relevant funder relationship history, access to other staff members, and timely responses to questions. Regular meetings with the Senior Manager of Partnerships would be scheduled for the Grant Writer to provide updates on their work, discuss any resources required, and solicit further direction. 

The Grant Writer will prepare four to five (4-5) LOI templates to be used in support of 2021 fundraising efforts.

After an initial draft of each final grant report and LOI template, two to three rounds of edits are anticipated.

Deliverables

Additional information about the deliverables are as follows in order of priority (for confidentiality, names of funders are withheld):

  1. Report to Corporate Partner 1: A 12-month review of all aspects of DataKind’s work, including a special focus on DataKind’s Economic Resilience Impact Practice work. A report outline, past reports to the same funder, and a range of support materials will be provided. Please note that there will be a large overlap in the content for Foundation Report 2 and Corporate Parter 1, and the Grant Writer will be encouraged to repurpose content where appropriate. Report to be finalized by 10/23/20
  2. Report to Foundation Report 1: A 12-month review of all aspects of DataKind’s work, including a special focus on DataKind’s Frontline Health Systems Impact Practice work (including project summaries). A report outline, past reports to the same funder, and a range of support materials will be provided. Please note that there will be a large overlap in the content for the Foundation 1 and Corporate Partner 1 reports, and the Grant Writer will be encouraged to repurpose content where appropriate. Report to be finalized by 11/20/20
  3. Report to Foundation Report 2: A summary of six (6) data science projects completed by volunteer teams. A report outline, project briefs, check-in presentations, interim funder update emails, and final project manager notes will be available to support the drafting of the report. Report to be finalized by 11/30/20
  4. Report to Corporate Partner 2: A summary of a single project. A report outline, project briefs, check-in presentations, interim funder update emails, and final project manager notes will be available to support the drafting of the report. Report to be finalized by 11/30/20
  5. Letters of Inquiry: Four to five (4-5) LOI templates to be used with prospective funders with whom DataKind has no existing relationship. Templates to be finalized by 11/6/20

Proposal

DataKind is looking for a Grant Writer to begin in early October. We will be accepting proposals until noon EST on Wednesday, 30 September 2020, with the intent of signing a contract in the following week or two.

Interested parties are requested to submit a complete proposal to dave@datakind.org which includes:

  1. Your resume
  2. A one-paged cover letter, containing the following: 
    1. Your experience conveying complex and/or technical matters;
    2. An estimated range of hours and rate per hour or, alternatively, a project fee; and
    3. Confirmation of your availability through 30 November 2020.
  3. A relevant writing sample (e.g. reports for funding institutions, LOIs for foundations) which demonstrates your ability to tell a story that moves readers to action, conveys complex information to a non-technical audience in an accessible way, or clearly communicates how systems change is effected through innovative projects.
  4. A curated list of previous clients for whom you have prepared final grant reports and complex grant applications.
  5. References of two (2) clients from the above list with contact information and context. 

Selection

Strong proposals will be contacted for further consideration. These will be selected based on clarity of alignment with DataKind’s goals, relevance of past experience, and budget requirements. 

DataKind will be looking for applicants who demonstrate past experience of producing grant reports on behalf of nonprofits, especially if the reports focus on the use of data science, emerging technologies or innovative solutions for generating social impact and/or systems change.

Additional Context on DataKind

  • We are 20,000 strong: DataKind volunteers hail from almost every country across the world, representing a community of technologists and social change makers who believe in using data science and AI for a stronger planet and a more just and prosperous world.

  • We have served 300+ projects around the world: From using satellite imagery to measure crop yields to automating the fight against hate speech online, our volunteer community has shown up to help solve some of the most pressing challenges facing humanity around the world. Through this approach, illustrating what we call “the art of the possible,” these projects have resulted in more effective NGOs, more funding for social change organizations, and more awareness of the power (and pitfalls) of data science and AI in the social sector. 

  • People are at the center of our process: The most advanced machine learning algorithms are useless if they’re not designed for real people’s problems. DataKind celebrates human centered design principles that focus on the “why,” the “for whom,” and the “should we” long before we ever get going on the “what.”

  • “AI for Good” will only succeed if it’s “AI for All”: We will continue our work until all people and all communities can use digital technology for the outcomes they want to see. We support not only the tech communities of today but also anyone in any community who wants to lead how data technologies serve their needs fairly, with an emphasis on including individuals from groups that are historically underrepresented in technology or will be impacted by the intervention. 

DataKind has always known that we will not be able to combat all of the world’s looming challenges on the backs of individual, short-term projects alone. Thanks to generous long-term support from The Rockefeller Foundation and the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth, we are now focusing the DataKind network on issue areas, such as improving health outcomes through Frontline Health Workers or increasing economic resilience. You can read more about the new strategy here.

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