A Scathing Report on Grant Writer’s Institute

Ok, this is not something I want to do. I like to believe in the good intentions of people. And I rarely feel the need to write an article solely for the purpose of exposing a business that acts in a way that I can only consider to be highly unethical.

Grant Writer’s Institute, which goes under several other names as well, has been promoting our grant to the people whom they are charging hundreds of dollars for something that is quite a bit less than they are encouraging people to believe that it is. They provide an information packet that supposedly contains information on grants that business owners can get to fund business expansion or startup. They have added us to their list, and we are being contacted regularly now by people who have been taken by this company. We have been contacted directly by three people, and have had applications submitted by others. The three people we were contacted by all reported how useless the information was that they were given, and that it was misleading and incomplete about the reality of actually GETTING a grant.

They operate on the fine edge of legality. They word their information carefully, so the eager applicant will THINK they are getting something they are not. They are not picky about the “grants” they recommend – some are actually contests, not grants (and there is a huge difference). Some require fees to apply. Ours is not money, and they represent it as such – it is clear they have never even read our site beyond the word “grant”.

We received an application, which some guy apparently paid them to prepare.

  • Now, in the first place, our application can be prepared by ANY qualified candidate – if you can’t prepare your own grant application for our program, you are not qualified to operate a business!
  • In the second place, the job this company did on preparing it was appalling.

It was obviously prepared by someone who did not speak English natively. To their credit, they did conceal it well, but there were inconsistent phrases which gave it away. This is something a professional company would have paid more attention to.

They did NOTHING to help this person to actually appear qualified. It was patently obvious that they just wrote down whatever he said – even the things that were redundant, and a bit rambling. They did not help him actually present his information in a way that would help him qualify for the grant. The information presented is in fact completely unsuitable, because there is nothing in it which even outlines a viable business concept. It is completely unoriginal, and the business, as outlined, would have no chance of succeeding.

This company is NOT a professional grant writing company! They lack the most basic skills in presenting grant application information in a way that will help an applicant actually GET an award. They take money while representing themselves as such, but the kind of work they did on this grant application suggests that they are not concerned about whether you actually get the grant. They do not appear to be concerned about learning what the requirements of the grant are – no one from their company has so much as ASKED us for any of the judging criteria (and a good grant writer would do that), and they clearly did NOT read the available information about our grant requirements, or they would have done a better job.

A real grant writer looks at many factors – the grant requirements, the likely judging criteria, the competition level for the grant, and the best way to present the information given so that it meets those requirements. They will recommend wording things in a way that presents them in their best light. They will outline the value and feasibility of a proposed project, and they will detail the greater good of the project.

There was no effort whatever in this application toward actually helping this person GET the grant. The job they did could have been done better by a high school student.

The information I am presenting here is documented, and can be legally proven in a court of law. I am not committing libel – I can prove what I say. We have the applications, we have the witnesses.

  • Avoid this company, and all of their affiliations.
  • Do not EVER pay more than the cost of an average priced book for ANY kind of grant listings. And be careful even with those!
  • If you can afford to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars for grant information, you can afford to bootstrap a business. It does not take much to do so, as long as you are willing to work and be creative.

I am sorry to have to write this. I’m sick of having to explain to people the reality of grants – and seeing a company like this just makes me ill. It will eventually catch up with them – you can’t do this much harm over and over without it eventually coming back at you.

Right now I’m torn – I can seek legal help in making these people stop using our grant in their listings. But if we do that, we lose the ability to build a potential case against them. We also lose our ability to advise the people they are harming on what possible redress they might seek. So I haven’t yet decided exactly what to do, other than publishing what I know, and sounding warnings far and near.

If any legal entity or reporter wishes to pursue this, we will cooperate fully, but we will not release applications, or contact names without permission of the applicants, or a court order, pursuant to our privacy terms.

11 Responses to A Scathing Report on Grant Writer’s Institute

  • Neal Mclaughlin says:


    Thank you for taking time to post this.
    I suppose I can officially now be counted among the victims. Though the blame, at this point in my belated investigation, is difficult to lay solely at the door of this establishment.
    It may very well turn out that the gentleman who initially contacted my mother (who is 79 y/o) about remedying her need for a wheel chair accessible van, is indeed known to GWI (though they deny it). Nonetheless, she mentioned to him that I had lost my job of 14 1/2 years a few weeks ago and might need help in acquiring capital to start a web based merchant services business. Money was obviously short, but $1150 to obtain a grant of $35,000 for advertising funds, seemed a no-brainer. Especially since he said he would walk me through the application process (with no mention of the additional $275 per pg.
    professionally prepared proposal service to follow from GWI, IF I decided to go forward. With no guarantees of success on “winning” the grants [contests] on their part of course either, much less the quality of researched funders already paid for), and if I did not obtain the grant, I would get my money back.
    The listings were indeed provided by GWI, AFTER an $1150.00 payment was made to “get the grant”. As you said, a list of contests, and “alternative resources”…the SBA. Nothing near the agreed target of 35k.
    I can no longer, of course, get in touch with this gentleman by phone, text or email.
    GWI’s contention is they simply filled an order for research to be done after fees were paid, and they have no further obligation unless, and for the first time (personally), I wished to employ their grant proposal writing services. As stated above, for additional sums of money.
    With your permission, I would like to copy and print your article to submit to my local police department to begin the process of investigation, which my bank requires to then attempt satisfaction in this matter.
    Neal McLaughlin

  • Laura says:

    If you’ve been burned by this company, don’t waste time in seeking help from your credit card company. There are limits to how long after a payment is made that you can try to stop a payment.

    Proving fraud is very difficult. Keep any written communications that might prove a case.

  • Dave Shipley says:

    You need not worry about stopping GWI; the Attorney General has already done so, and seized all assets, records, computers etc. I know because I was a subcontractor for them for a few months. My contract was terminated because I asked too many questions. Indeed it was obvious that GWI was “selling” grant applications to people who had no chance of award, and many were completely unsuited for the targeted programs.

  • Rafael Contreras Jr says:

    I paid on my credit card $1,150 to get educational grant.I returned application filled out and it’s been 4 weeks without reply. I called yesterday they claim not to have reveived it. They e mailed it to me and for me to return it via fax but they don’t give a fax # to fax it to.
    I think I will call my credit card company and have them withdraw funds, I charged it on July 2.

    Any other suggestions ??

  • Laura says:

    I recommend that you file a chargeback as soon as possible. There are time limits on doing so.

    Be aware that since the company is under investigation, that there may be some extra time involved in resolving a chargeback.


  • karen says:

    does anyone know anything about companies variously named “Funding Resources,” “My Funding Resources,” or “Wealth Power Systems?” All are supposed to be connected with Kevin Trudeau, whose name is ALL over the internet’s complaint engines. I am a previously productive person destroyed by stage IV breast cancer, stroke, and multiple major surgeries. Funding Resources has contacted me because I bought KT’sbook “Free Money,” in a midnight fit of loneliness from a bottle, and they’ve made statements to the effect that I’m eligible for multiple grants from Obama’s stimulus pkg. As with most good scammers they’e just convincing enough, sympathetic all over the place, and just factual enough that their product seems credible. Have not been asked for ANY personal info (yet -am speaking to their 2nd-level spokesperson later today)and plan on not giving anything out, regardless of promises. Because of our dreadful situation, my emotions are in a scramble and i’m ANGRY that I might be on the conveyor belt of disappointment. I want to find others in my situation to brainstorm with…

  • Laura says:

    You are not eligible for grants. Not really. There are NO personal grants given through the government. The Stimulus package has been an encouragement for scammers to give people the impression that there is just money laying around waiting for them to pick up. This impression is completely false. Even if you do have some eligibility for funding, it is for specific things – school, adaptive equipment, etc. NEVER for living expenses, and NEVER for starting a business. And even then, the application process is intensive, and actually GETTING anything is an extreme long shot. There are private contests out there, but you’ll waste a lot of time hoping for money from them.

    For the most part, the government feels that through programs like SSI and Medicare or Medicaid, that the needs of people who are disabled are already addressed. So there is not generally additional help available.

    Your gut is telling you the right thing on this one – don’t pay them anything.

  • Mark Vice says:

    Great post!

  • Shyla Quade says:

    We also got suckered by My Funding Resources and Aria Financial Services. What a joke that company is. They took 10,250.00 from my father. They will not return numerous telephone calls, emails, etc. They are true rip offs and scammers. My father is 72 years old and not well. Half of it was from credit cards and half was from a personal check. They promise all this stuff and do not do anything for you. There are complaints everywhere you look on the internet and I can’t believe the state of Utah lets them continue ripping people off. All those people should be in jail. We have started by contacting the credit card companies, the Federal Trade Commission, The Better Business Bureau and the Attorney General in Utah. It would be great if everyone could get together and we could initiate a civil action against this company. Stay away from them! They are also extremely rude.

  • emt training says:

    Wow this is a great resource.. I’m enjoying it.. good article

  • Virginia Ness says:

    This article is a God send. My Funding Resources has been calling me. Fortunately, I have not yet given them any money, nor do I intend to now. They do, however, make statments that seem very tempting. Thank you for this information.

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