Good planning is one of the most effective factors in being able to make a strong and convincing application. However, in our experience we have often found that a common weakness in applications is caused by people writing their applications before fully planning their project. The following tips and hints are an overview to outline what thinking should have taken place before an application is made.
You don’t have to do it all yourself. It is a very good idea to involve more than one person in planning your project. Different members of your committee or board and members of staff will have different skills and experience that they can bring to the process.
It is also important that before you start, you make sure that everyone involved in your project is in agreement about what you are trying to achieve and how you are going to do it.
1. Identify the need you want to address
Who are the people you will be working with and in what ways are they disadvantaged? How does this disadvantage affect their lives? A good understanding of the target audience and their needs will help you decide what differences you want to achieve for them.
Tip: We know that new projects cannot always be precise as they may not yet know the individual who will attend. What funders are looking for from new projects is a good understanding of the target audience the project is aimed at and how they are going to get these people involved.
You may know what the need is from experience if you are an existing organisation already working in the area. You can also research the need you want to address by doing things like:
• Having consultations with for example children and young people, the local community and/or partner organisations.
• Running a pilot project.
• Using research from your own or other organisations.
Come back next week to see the next Planning Your Project tips!
Remember SCVO is here to help so why not give us a call on 0121 525 1127 to see how we can help your organisation.