Step up consulting

Helping organizations secure the funding needed for their missions to thrive.


Many organizations identify grants as one piece of their fund development plan but many lack the proper resources and the right skillset in house to support this area of fundraising. This leaves staff spending hours applying to the wrong grants, presenting the wrong information, or living in the “react-zone” and not securing a dime. This becomes challenging and frustrating for everyone involved. Without the knowledge and technical skill of grant writing, staff can easily feel overwhelmed and are left feeling frustrated or defeated when their requests are turned down.The good news is that you can overcome these challenges with some guidance and support. At Step Up Consulting, we use a collaborative approach to bridge the gap between the passion for the work you do and building the skill set to share your impact storySara Stepa, the President at Step Up Consulting, started this business to help organizations better understand the grant landscape and grow their internal capacity.Check out the About section for more information on our available services.


Our offer suite is grounded in building capacity across the charitable sector and first priority is to grow the knowledge and skills within your team about grants and the grant landscape. Helping you understand how to find the right funding, how to write a strong application and understand how to package your ask are just a few of our goals of working together.Our offers include:
>> Fractional Grants Management
>> Application Preparation and Project Development Support
>> Grant Writing Services
>> Capacity Building Workshops or Critiques
>> Customized Grant Systems or Strategy Development
At Step Up Consulting we also work alongside funders to build transparent funding practices.Go to BUILD to explore outsourcing your grant management or application preparation. To learn more about Grant writing services go to WRITING. For more info on critiques, workshops or how to build the skills within your team check out LEARN. Jump to STRATEGY if you want to develop a customized strategy for granting.

Grant management

Many organizations expect to raise a significant amount of money through grants but unfortunately don't always have the resources required to stay on track or to plan effectively for upcoming grant deadlines.FRACTIONAL GRANTS MANAGEMENT
At Step Up Consulting we can take the stress out of grant management with our fractional grant management service. By joining your team we will help you track upcoming grants, align them with your organization needs, and ensure you apply to the right funders.
Further, preparing a strong project idea is vital to a successful grant application. Step Up Consulting can collaborate with your team to develop a winning project idea without the pressure of a looming deadline. At the end of this work you'll be left with a blueprint that can be used for funder after funder in the future.
Reach out to ask about Fractional Grants Management or Project Development Support if you want to lay the groundwork for grant success.

grant Writing

Grant writing requires a unique style and a special skill set. It’s not like writing a literary document or business case, nor is it a story-telling document - it’s all of these and more. A strong grant application shares a persuasive case about why the organization, project, or event is going to have an impact in a way that aligns with a funder's priorities.Working alongside your team I will write a grant application identified by you aligning your project with the funder's priorities. I will provide guidance on preparing your budget and ensure all requirements are met.~90% of the application is completed by Step Up ConsultingServices Include:
• Project and Organization Review
• Grant Background Research
• Budget Compilation
• Writing, Editing and Compiling Grant application
• Liaise, Review and Strategize with Project Team
• Compilation of Final Grant Application (if required),
or uploading to a grantor's online portal
*4 weeks' notice of a funding deadline is preferred.
Less than 4 weeks notice an accelerated rate may apply.

Capacity building

Building the knowledge and skillsets within your team will improve your chances of securing funds, and help you do it in a more effective and efficient manner.
I encourage all organizations to invest in growing the skillsets within their team.

Grant Critiques

Working from a capacity-building lens I provide a thorough critique and written feedback on an application completed by your organization. This provides insights to strengthen your team’s skillset and grant writing knowledge to support not only the present request but future requests as well. This service can be applied to previously submitted applications or upcoming deadlines.*~90% of the application is completed by your teamServices Include:
• Project and Organizational Review
• Grant Background Research
• Review and Intensive Edit of Grant Proposal
• Written Summary outlining strengths and improvements
A minimum of 10days notice is required before a funding deadline, if applicable.

Grant Workshops

My workshops can be delivered to individuals or teams who want to learn more about grants. By offering two different workshops, I can help your teams better understand the grant cycle or help build your skillsets. After attending either of these workshops attendees can expect to have a greater understanding of:- Do’s and don’ts of grant writing,
- The importance of writing style,
- How to identify the right funding to apply for,
- the Granting cycle and,
- The three R's (and no these are not reduce, reuse, recycle)
Workshops can be delivered online or in-person.

Grant Strategy

Many organizations expect to raise a significant amount of money through grants but allocate limited staffing, time, and resources to this area of fund development. Similar to major gifts, annual donors, or fundraising events, time, attention, and skill are required to be successful in the granting realm.By building a strategy we will get clarity on your granting goals, identify what processes already exist and how to improve them, and start to build the skillset with your team with capacity-building opportunities.


Check out a few resources and articles below.

Below you'll find video resources developed in partnership with Calgary Foundation and their Community Knowledge Centre.


If you have any questions about the services above and/or pricing please contact me below.Sara Stepa
Owner and Principal Grant Writer
Email: [email protected]