Why Tracking Hours is Important for Grant Funding | Track It Forward

Grant Funding Relies on Volunteer Hours

Community Engagement

Since your volunteers are tracking hours, there is no doubt you have engaged the community

Show Progress

Show off how you engage more volunteers over time and how that improves impact.

Audit Trail

Protect your funding by having proof of your community engagement and your social impact.

Be More Competitive, Track Hours

We've talked with hundreds of volunteer organizers and they all have the same issue: funding. We've talked with ones that have just thought of it, who have gotten it, and who are currently working on it. And as you can imagine, there are countless challenges with getting grants, but there is one that stuck out to us the most as the hardest. And that is...

Keeping your organization's volunteer force moving forward without funding.

The hope is that funding will come, but it would be all for nothing if your volunteers disappeared and the momentum stopped. Or even worse, if you got the funding but required proof of your engagement before being able to get the grant. Our hearts go out to all the nonprofits out there who have to play this balancing act, but what we do know is that tracking volunteer time does make a difference.

Tracking volunteer hours is one of the key tools to keeping a volunteer force engaged and empowered. Why? It empowers volunteers and at the same time provides data. Data shows your volunteer engagement level and proof that you are engaging your community. Grantors want to create an impact and they usually tend to want to magnify the impact that a nonprofit is already creating. Proof of volunteerism is the credibility your organization needs to confidently demonstrate progress, to show you can make a difference, and with extra funds you can make an even larger impact.

The great part about getting grants is that it is much easier to get the same one again. And showing real proof of community engagement is the best way to show your continued progress. Inspire confidence in your grantor and don't do anything to lose that relationship.

There are grants out there that don't audit the hours completely, and where estimates might be acceptable, but that is a risk for your organization and your funding. If your grantor needs to prove they placed the funding in the right place to create impact, they might need to prove that through your real, tracked volunteer time. Don't get yourself or the grantor in an awkward situation that might jeopardize both organizations by fudging the numbers. Do it right. Track those hours.