How to Define Need in a Grant Application

Need is a word that describes the essential necessities of an individual, group, or society. The term can be applied to food, water, clothing, shelter, and medical services.

Needs can vary depending on a person’s place in the world, a particular culture, religion, and customs. They also depend on the level of civilization. For example, a person who lives in a cave may need very simple goods to survive, such as clothes made of animal skins or leaves. A person living in a modern society may need more varied products, such as clothes and food that are healthy.

In addition, a need can be related to a person’s emotional or intellectual needs. People may feel depressed or lost if they do not have the necessary materials to satisfy their needs.

The main verb form of need is to be. It can be used as a present participle or as an auxiliary verb. The auxiliary forms of need are dare, need, ought to and used to.

Affirmatives are rare with the auxiliary need, and it is almost always used with negative words or phrases in formal contexts.

Use Comparable Data and Statistics to Define the Need

Often, it is easier to define need by comparing it to other needs. This can help you narrow down the scope of your issue and make it more manageable.

This can be done by looking at trends over time, evaluating your current data, and using comparative data to find trends that are relevant to your need. You can also look at local data to show how the problem is gaining attention in your community.

Focus on One Main Underlying Issue to Create a Compelling Need Statement

There are likely many concerns and issues within your community that you want to address. However, your needs statement should be focused on one primary underlying need that you believe is most urgent and will cause indeterminable damage to your community if not addressed.

The underlying need should be measurable and can be easily quantified with data, such as the number of homeless people in your area or the percentage of youths who are at risk for being arrested or placed into foster care. Using a standard method to measure need is critical to making sure you are addressing the right problem, not just one that will get your project funded.

Your needs statement should tell a compelling human-interest story that highlights the need, the urgency of the problem, and how your proposed solution will meet that need. It should be written in a way that will motivate readers to support your cause and help you win funding.

A successful needs statement will clearly convey the relevance of your project to a prospective funder and establish how your proposal meets their mission statement and goals. It will also help you demonstrate why your project is important to the overall health and well-being of your community.

Your needs statement will also need to convey how your project is a stepping stone to larger strategies and initiatives. Your goal is to get the project funded and then to secure additional funding for a long-term strategy that will continue to impact the community.