Grant Writing Workshop

Cost Share

Voluntary vs. Mandatory

Some agencies require a mandatory amount (or percentage) as cost sharing. This shows the agency that you have stake in the project and that it is important to you. Occasionally cost-sharing is not mandatory but you can show on your budget that you will carry some of the costs of the project. Again showing the agency that this is important enough to you to commit your own resources.

Cash vs. In-Kind

Cash matches are ones that you actually spend money on. A portion of someone's salary and fringes, or travel, etc.
In-kind matches are things that cost money but are donated. Volunteer time, hall rental space, etc.


No matter how you promise your matching funds you must document that the matching did or will take place. Some agencies require "letters of intent" from organization donating in-kind matches at the time of proposal. For instance you may need a letter from the VFW hall showing the going rate for the halls rental and stating they will let you have the hall free of charge for your event. Cash matches are a little easier since you should have receipts or timecards, but you must relate the receipts to your project. Timecards should say what percentage of time was spent on the grant project. IU required effort reports by anyone working of a funded project regardless of who is paying them.

IU Requirements