Posted tagged ‘writing effective fundraising bids’

Ten Steps to the Perfect Funding Bid: Step Ten

May 27, 2012

Final Read-through

If you’ve followed the first nine steps (plus the odd addition along the way), your bid should be in pretty good shape.  Quite rightly, the Ten Steps blog finishes with Step Ten, and covers the final read-through.  It’s a rather more important stage than you may have assumed!

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Ten Steps to the Perfect Funding Bid: Step Nine

December 30, 2011

Monitoring & Evaluation

Another question on grant application forms that is often answered badly, is the question on monitoring and evaluation.  You need to show that you understand the need to check and capture that what you are doing is actually delivering your original aims.  (more…)

Successful Bid-writing: The Power of Words

December 9, 2011

Ah, the power of words.  I was running a course on tendering for local authority contracts in Devon a couple of months ago, and on the evaluation forms one participant wrote “I never realised that the WORDS mattered so much.”  It raised a wry grin from me … well actually I had to supress a bit of a laugh.  Just what else do we have to persuade a funder to give us money?  Videos, slideshows, photo-montages are all well and good but I’m yet to find a charitable trust or foundation that doesn’t still want something written down! (more…)

Bid appraisal by (secret) checklist

August 5, 2011

It’s useful when a funder issues clear, detailed guidance notes.  Ideally, these should include a full list of what the funder is looking for in a bid.  As applicants, we can then use this as a checklist, knowing that whoever is appraising the bid is using the same checklist.  I’ve been doing some bid appraisals where unfortunately I knew that I had an appraisal checklist that was different from anything the applicants had seen. (more…)

Re-Blog – “Charities: Don’t Mention the Olympics in 2012”

July 30, 2011

Many charities might well be planning an Olympic-themed fundraising event next year.  Well beware!   Howard Lake has written a fantastically useful blog post in HuffPost UK warning that almost every word you might possibly want to use (even “gold”, “Games”, and most ridiculously of all “2012” have been listed in LOCOG’s guidance of words which cannot be used without infringing The London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Act 2006.  Who even knew THAT existed?

Read his post at     http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/howard-lake/charities-dont-mention-th_b_910769.html   and avoid injunctions, damages, and criminal proceedings.

I’m in the middle of developing a new training course on “Advanced Bid-Writing Skills” and some thoughts from that will appear in this blog shortly.

Corporate Fundraising – is it possible in a recession?

January 13, 2011

I promised in the last blog to come back and cover unit costing in a little more depth.  But before that I’d like to divert briefly from the Ten Steps to the Perfect Funding Bid, and say a little bit about corporate fundraising in difficult recession times.

I’ve been developing a new training course with my colleague Margaret MacKenzie of The Swan Company (www.theswancompany.co.uk – strapline “taking the cold out of calling!”).  She’s an expert in business-to-business relationship building, and we’ve come together to combine specialisms and to help charities and VCOs to find ways of extracting cash from businesses. 

So will a business, facing another difficult year, stump up funds to a local charity?  We would argue that it depends on how you approach them.  And this highlights a really bad habit that I think VCOs fall into.  We tend to focus on what WE need, and how brilliant OUR project is, and we think that this is enough to convince the whole world to be hugely impressed and instantly give us all the funds we need.  Well here’s the reality check – it ain’t that easy.  Businesses are not charities and they aren’t grant-making bodies.  They need a reason to give out their hard-earned cash, especially at the moment.

And what we will be helping VCOs to explore in our new training course, is how to show the businesses that there are good solid reasons, and that supporting a local charity can make good business sense.  We need to think not about what we need, but what we can offer.  This also has the advantage of making the relationship a more equal partnership, rather than one of supplicant and benefactor.

So we’ve got some guinea-pigs coming along to the first “Cracking the Corporate Coffers” day on January 19th, and I’m happy to write more on this topic if it’s of interest.  Click through to my website for details of the training course  www.tessex.co.uk

Next time though, it’s back to the Ten Steps to the Perfect Funding Bid.  I think we’re up to 8b!

©  Tamara Essex 2011

Ten Steps to the Perfect Funding Bid: step 7

July 29, 2010

Describe the Project:

Sounds easy, doesn’t it?  But this is where you have to use your journalistic skills … and by that I mean “Think tabloid” !!!   You only have a line or two to grab the interest of the people reading your funding application – so make the project sound captivating, effective, and significant in those first few words. (more…)