Grants: How you can make money with your ideas

By: Charlie Ni

On November 21st, eight Rovers from the 180th Pacific Coast Scout Group attended a workshop called “Writing Winning Grant Applications”, hosted by Sonja Embree. Ms. Embree has a PhD in Humanistic Psychology.  In the past, she took part in designing a whole self-development related program for Langara College, and was the Vice President of the Community Arts Council of Vancouver (CACV). Recently, she took on a teaching position at a university in Ontario and in the midst of her packing and moving, she graciously took time out to host this wonderful workshop for us.

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Sonja’s expertise in grant applications stem from her years of experience both as an applicant for various grants, and from being on different committees for approving grants.  The workshop was very comprehensive and it covered many core elements of a grant application. For instance, she went over the types of language one can use when trying to capture a committee’s attention; the technical aspects such as formatting and layout; and how to illustrate the project scope, goals and expected outcomes, project models, time-lines, budgets, SWOT analyses, project growth, and other important key elements when describing a project’s vision. Sonja used our Scout Group as an example, and gave tips on how we can make our external image and grant applications more appealing.

In my opinion, this workshop was very valuable because it taught me how to better articulate my ideas in writing. From getting approvals for a project within our Scout group, to writing applications for a scholarship, we must be able to articulate and communicate our stories clearly and concisely in order to have a chance at success. These are skills we can use and practice in real life situations. We are grateful to have a group like the 180th Pacific Coast Scout Group as we know it is a safe environment where the repercussions for failure is much lower than, lets say at a job.

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I feel very fortunate to have been able to attend this workshop. It was all made possible through a connection that one of our Rovers, Karen W., had made while working with Sonja at CACV. To me, this Scout group provides so many great opportunities for learning and growth. This is just one of the workshops that have inspired me to continue to develop my skills.



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