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Guidelines to Request Funding from the AMA Foundation

1.  Always type your application or proposal.
All of our forms are available as  Word Documents.  If you received an application as a hard copy, please contact us to receive the electronic version.  The selection committees do not look favorably on applications that are hand-written. 

2.  Answer all questions on the application to the best of your ability.
If you do not understand a question or field, do not hesitate to contact AMA Foundation program staff at (312) 464-4200.   Make sure to mention the name of the program for which you are applying.  Do not leave questions unanswered as every section is rated by our selection committee and blank fields will impair your chances for funding.

3.  Adhere to page limits.
We have very strict page limits to allow everyone an equal opportunity to give select information.  We do not allow additional pages, and we do not allow applicants to type their answers on additional pages.  When additional information is requested, pages must be a standard 8.5” x 11”, single-sided page.  Brochures, annual reports, newspaper articles, etc. must be copied by the applicant and submitted to the AMA Foundation either as a scanned PDF or copied pages.  Any additional pages, or materials not in this format cannot be used and may impair your chances for funding.

4.  Adhere to program deadlines.
To be fair to all applicants, we are very strict on our due dates.  All of our deadlines are “received by” deadlines, meaning applications and all supporting materials must be received in the AMA Foundation office on or before the date specified on the application or Website.  There are no exceptions to this rule.  We strongly encourage using courier services such as UPS or Fed-Ex to ensure that your package arrives on time.  The United States Postal Service gives no delivery guarantees.  Many programs also allow for electronic submission.  See the guides for submitting your application for more information.  Only choose one method for submitting your materials.
Tip:  Before sending your application through the mail, make a copy of all materials for your records.  All applications that have an e-mail address on them will receive confirmation of receipt.  If you feel we did not receive your application, you can then scan your materials and e-mail them to the appropriate program staff.

5.  Provide a detailed budget.
When the application or proposal requires a budget, make sure to list exactly what the funds from the AMA Foundation will cover.  The more detailed information you can provide,, the better.  The majority of programs do not allow for funding to pay for operational costs, salary, or indirect expenses, but please read the guidelines and ask questions if you are unsure.

General tips for grant-writing

Explain your project explicitly
Our selection committees may have no knowledge of your organization or your project, so it is important to explain it thoroughly within the space provided.  Give information as to whom you are serving, how many people, how this will impact your community, why you are the best organization to conduct this project, etc.

Explain evaluation
At the end of each grant cycle (1 year), we require grant recipients to submit a final report form detailing the results of their project.  It is important to think about how you will evaluate your project when you are applying as this data ultimately decides how effective the project was. 

Prove the need for funding
Proving the need for funding, especially with our Public Health grants, is crucial and is a determinant in the selection process.  The organizations who can prove that they need the money through data, information about their population and whom they serve, etc., are rated more favorably than those who do not prove this need. 

Explain leverage and sustainability
The AMA Foundation strives to fund programs that can leverage the money we grant into a much larger amount.  Show how $1 of grant money will be used to provide $5 worth of care, or how a grant from the AMA Foundation will lead to larger grants from other funders.  You should also explain how this project will be sustained in future years without funding from the AMA Foundation.

List other funding sources
It is important to list your other funding sources, when possible, and other organizations where you have requested money.  This can include in-kind contributions. 

Quick tips

1.  Address your letters to “AMA Foundation Selection Committee.”
2.  Spell-check!
3.  Sign your application and make sure all letters of recommendation are signed.
4.  Do not put in a binder or staple documents.  There’s no need to submit multiple copies of any materials.
5.  Do not include DVDs or materials not requested as they will not be used.
6.  Call if you have any questions or concerns:  (312) 464-4200.

What does the AMA Foundation fund?

1.  Tuition assistance scholarships to medical students (Physicians of Tomorrow Scholarships, Minority Scholars Award, Arthur N. Wilson, MD Scholarship, Scholars Fund) – Programs available in February.
2.  Public health mini-grants (Fund for Better Health) – Program applications available in Spring
3.  Free clinic programs (Healthy Communities/Healthy America; Fund for Better Health) – Program application for Healthy Communities/Healthy America available in Winter and funded in Summer; program application for Fund for Better Health available in Spring
4.  Medical Student, Physician Resident and Physician Fellow research projects (Seed Grant Research Program; National and Regional Student Research Forums) – Program applications available in Fall/Winter

All programs are one-year grants and are awarded at the same time every year.  Once the deadline has passed, we will not fund  that program until the following year.  Please see each program’s Web page for more details.

What does the AMA Foundation not fund?

1.  Undergraduate education scholarships
2.  Non-MD/DO medical education scholarships (PharmD, RN, etc.)
3.  International programs
5.  Medical assistance to individuals
6.  Loans
7.   Political candidates or campaigns
8.  Fundraising events such as raffles, auctions, or galas
9.  Capital campaigns or new construction projects

Other resources (Note: The links below will take you off the AMA Web site. The AMA is not responsible for the content of other Web sites.)

Corporation for Public Broadcasting - Grant proposal writing tips
Donors Forum - Grantseekers toolbox
Foundation Center - Learn about proposal writing
Innovation Network - Evaluation tools and resources