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Comments from Mary Mulcahy, Program Officer, the Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation, from The Grantseeker's Guide to Winning Proposals:
This proposal uses the Washington Grantmakers Common Grant Application Form, which the Cafritz Foundation requires all of its applicants to use. Usually, the Foundation does not solicit proposals, but program officers are sometimes asked for advice in advance of a deadline. Since we have supported Higher Achievement for various projects since 1980, I have an ongoing relationship with the Director of Grants, and we spoke before the proposal was submitted.
The executive summary is the introduction to the program, so it helps if you can make a strong impression initially. Higher Achievement's executive summary highlighted significant academic outcomes within the "purpose for request" section. As mentioned above, I have worked with the organization over the years and was aware of the organization's many successes. That said, if I were evaluating the proposal for the first time, these measurable results would have caught my attention immediately.