Andy and I (emphasis on Andy) have been working on a grant application for the past week. It was a grant for home-based care and training from the health department. Grant writing has been an uphill battle with the staff here. Questions like: “How do you make your services known to beneficiaries?” continually get answers like “We make our services known.” It’s exasperating. Not only that, but there was a legal document that we needed to submit with the application–something that Hlomelikusasa should have had, but didn’t–and Andy and Boniswa drove almost 10 hours to get it (4 hrs there, + getting lost and redirected, and 4 hrs back).
We were really down to the wire. We needed signatures from 2 board members, plus several things printed, and then to drive 1 hr to Kokstad to hand-deliver the proposal. We told the woman who’s signature we were waiting on that she had to be there by 9AM on Thursday, and around 9:30 we finally got her on her cell and she said she wasn’t coming. AND then there were printer problems and it took ages to get the thing finished.
So, finally at 10 on the dot we hopped in the car w/ Boniswa and high tailed it to Kokstad. As we drove, Boniswa said, “Oh, so the grant is due today? At 11AM?” Andy nearly had a cow, because we had told her a thousand times. AND it is her job as project manager to be on top of details like that. We were really cutting it close, and when we got to town, we realized we didn’t know where the Health Department buildings were so we took a couple minutes weaving through streets to find it. I finally pulled up to the gate and Andy jumped out of the car, ushering Boniswa to do the same, and they ran to deposit our grant application.
But we were too late. By three minutes.
It was 11:03 and they closed the box at 11AM. No exceptions. So Hlomelikusasa lost out on the opportunity for over $40,000.
There will be other opportunities … but this was a good one.