Women Grants

As a woman, you want to start or expand a business. Perhaps, you want to attend college, or a technical/vocational school. Perhaps, you want to advance your career, and need additional training and further education. Or…you are a woman who directs a non-profit organization that advocates for women’s equality, provides job training and placement for women who otherwise would not have such opportunities. Perhaps, you are a highly qualified professional woman, and own and operate your own business, but believe that you could provide more services for your community. These examples illustrate the many and diverse ways, women may find and qualify for grants.

Women Grants, not necessarily for individual women, but for women-concerns, are available at the federal level. They are, also, available at the state level.To a lesser degree, they are offered by counties and cities. And, too, corporations and foundations often provide grant opportunities for women.

Several avenues exist for women to access grants for education. They include: the Federal Pell Grant Program, state education grants that generally are administered by an accredited college, university, community, technical or vocational school. Access to either a Pell or state grant requires a completed FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). This form determines a family’s expected financial contribution as well as the student’s. But these education grants are not gender-specific. The determining factor is, in fact, financial need as opposed to gender or ethnicity.

Women-owned businesses are growing in the United States notwithstanding the economic downtown. Women who own and operate their own businesses have an opportunity to impact their communities. How? Women Grants, especially at the federal, state and non-profit organization level, provide funding for innovative ideas that are directed at developing leadership skills, math and science abilities, offer job training and employment to young women, and girls. In order to access these funds, it is essential to dialogue with other women, partner with local public charities, and discuss as women-business owners, how older, more experienced women can offer direction and guidance to young women and girls. Think creatively! And think outside the box!

The federal government, in particular, when it announces a federal funding opportunity, is oftentimes looking for something different, something that shows ingenuity, inventiveness, a new way to solve an old problem. State governments do this, too, but not at the funding level of the federal government grants! If you are a woman engineer, and own your own engineering firm, or are a partner in one, think of the impact the business can have in encouraging young women and girls to develop their mathematical and scientific aptitudes. Develop a program that directs resources at helping young women and girls understand that they can make vital contributions to society by appreciating their talents, and skills. Then find a funding source: it could be the federal government, it could be a state agency, and it might be a foundation, corporation, university or combination of any outlined.

Is it hard work? Yes, but well-worth the effort.

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