Raising money for your project
Applications for funding and donations are just two of the ways you can raise funds and support for your project. There are also opportunities in great fundraising, pro-bono support and other support in kind from local business and groups.
Putting an application together can be a lot of work, so make sure you give yourself plenty of time to assemble all of the information and documents you will need before the closing date. You are more likely to be successful if you are well organised and knowledgeable about the funders you want to apply to. Success is also closer if you can clearly show the benefits of your project to the local community as well as some community support.
To be prepared you may want to build up a funding kit with the sort of general information funders are likely to ask for. It may include
- A schedule of applications for the year
- Files of applications, include a copy of the applications form and covering letter, plus information about that funder
- Supporting documents, for example
- Annual accounts, bank account number, GST and annual budget
- Annual report
- Certificate of incorporation, trust deed, evidence of IRD charitable and tax exempt status
- Charities Commission Certificate and number
- Brief history of your organisation
- Aims and objectives of your organisation and a description of how it meets the needs of the community
- Current activities, services, business plans, goals etc
- Letters of support, newspaper articles etc
- List of Trustees
Don’t forget to include a list showing volunteer input to the project and any significant donated materials. There are costs associated with well managed volunteers such as recruitment, orientation, supervision, expenses and recognition.
10 top tips
- All funding applications are different so make sure you read the application form carefully and understand what is needed.
- Check the closing date. Plan ahead to ensure that you have all the additional information you need to submit a full application before the due date.
- Check that your purpose and project fits within the funders criteria. Many funders encourage you to ring them and discuss your project.
- Be specific about your project. Answer the questions.
Why – purpose of your project
What – steps to complete the project
Who – people involved
How – methods to complete the project
- Assume the funder knows nothing about your group or project. Make sure you give some background about your group and its objectives.
- Fill in every section of the application form. If possible use black ink (it is much easier to read and photocopy). Do not bind or put your application in folders. Staple the pages together in the top left corner.
- Give an outline of your current financial position and include your Annual Financial Statements.
- Include all the information requested. Make sure that the contact person on the application form is actually available to take phone calls.
- Keep a copy of the application. It will make it easier next time you apply and also when you need to fill out any evaluation forms down the track.
- Be realistic, be honest and don’t rely on one funder to fund your whole project