SCHOOL FUNDRAISING Working together to find funds and write killer bids Ryan Green Managing Director
WELCOME • Objectives for this session. You will learn how to: • PREPARE – Develop a fundraising vision and strategy • PLAN – Find funds and identify what funders want to see in a funding bid • WRITE – Put pen to paper to start writing your own winning bid
WHY FUNDRAISE? • Different schools have different needs and reasons for raising additional funds: • Launch a new project • Develop or sustain a current project or activity • Provide opportunities to match the educational mix • Address a need in the local community
YOUR FUNDRAISING VISION • Identify a brighter future that involves a positive educational experience in school • Be meaningful to colleagues, pupils, parents and local community representatives • Be achievable within the next three to five years
THINK STRATEGICALLY • Outline your priorities according to your most urgent needs • Define your strengths and opportunities • Understand what is unique about your circumstances and ability to generate results
COLLABORATE • Identify strategic relationships and capitalise on them: • Parents & friends of school • School clusters & federations • Community groups • Not for profit organisations and charities • Local & national businesses • Share expertise and knowledge with other schools • Improved networking opportunities to identify future funding partnerships • Experience of bid writing • Experience of organising fundraising events • Increase your bidding power! • Tap into discounts and free resources
THE PURPOSE OF PLANNING • Match your needs to specific funds and funding criteria
WHAT CAN & CAN’T BE FUNDED? • No: • General funds • General running costs • General salaries • Replacement of statutory funds Yes: • Artists & poets in residence • Breakfast clubs & after school clubs • Building projects • Classroom resources • CPD training • Field trips & holidays • Green living & energy projects • Library books, ICT equipment & furniture • Outdoor learning & playground projects • Research & innovation • Science projects • Sports facilities & equipment
EASY WINS • B&Q Waste Donation Scheme • Community RePaint • Giving World Online • Home Retail Group Prize Draw • Lord’s Taverners Free Cricket Kit Bags • Merlin’s Magic Wand: Free Tickets • O2 Think Big • Sky Sports Living for Sports • Speakers for Schools • Woodland Trust: Free Tree Packs Autumn 2013
TOP GRANTS • Big Lottery Fund: Awards for All • Co-operative Community Fund • Education Endowment Foundation • EMI: Music Sound Foundation • Ernest Cook Trust • Football Foundation Facilities Grant • Foyle Schools Library Programme • Tesco Charity Trust
BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS WITH FUNDERS • Do your research • What types of organisation do they usually work with? • What projects have they funded? • Read the guidelines • Get the pitch right • Look for reciprocal advantages and relevance • Pick up the telephone • Keep in touch
PLAN YOUR BID • Key questions for your project: • Is it achievable? • Will it appeal to the funder? • Does it meet the funding criteria? Organisation type, geographical area, grant amount, project costs (capital or revenue)... • Have your beneficiaries told you what their needs are and how you can help them? • Does it represent value for money?
COLLABORATION FROM THE FUNDER’S PERSPECTIVE • Collaboration can make your project more fundable • ‘Community’ buzzword • Schools • Reach more beneficiaries • Provide a compelling case for the need for funding across a number of schools/groups e.g. speech therapist; poet in residence; iPads • Involve other schools in the dissemination of your project findings • Local groups & other organisations • Evidence of support for your project • Strong community links
IDENTIFYING YOUR NEEDS • What is the problem or issue you will address? • Why is your project needed? • How do you know this? • What do you want to achieve? • How will you measure success?
CONSULT YOUR BENEFICIARIES • You need to back up your project with evidence of need: • Make direct contact with your potential project users, partners and relevant organisations • Ask them how you can make a difference to their lives! • Build on existing work – by yourself & others • Think about piloting an activity • Find relevant links to local, regional or national initiatives • Gather letters of support, waiting lists, testimonials, questionnaire & focus group results
EXAMPLE What project or activities do you want us to fund? Describe your project. You can write up to 300 words.
EXAMPLE Our school aims to support the development of healthy and active lifestyles for children. We aim to offer opportunities for children, aged 4 - 7 years to enjoy the physical, social and emotional benefits of outdoor play, before and after school and during break and lunchtimes. The school also aims to promote parental involvement in children's learning and work with partners to support parents to re-inforce the importance of family learning. The aims are to: Improve the playground and surrounding grassed areas by including a physical activity trail and tyre park which will challenge and improve the gross motor skills of the children. The physical trail will also help the children to develop upper and lower body strength, core stability and team work. We intend to improve the outdoor soft play area and build an outdoor sandpit. We also plan to deliver sessions for parents on the benefit of outdoor play on children's development
Say what are you actually going to do first EXAMPLE Our school aims to support the development of healthy and active lifestyles for children. We aim to offer opportunities for children, aged 4 - 7 years to enjoy the physical, social and emotional benefits of outdoor play, before and after school and during break and lunchtimes. The school also aims to promote parental involvement in children's learning and work with partners to support parents to re-inforce the importance of family learning. The aims are to: Improve the playground and surrounding grassed areas by including a physical activity trail and tyre park which will challenge and improve the gross motor skills of the children. The physical trail will also help the children to develop upper and lower body strength, core stability and team work. We intend to improve the outdoor soft play area and build an outdoor sandpit. We also plan to deliver sessions for parents on the benefit of outdoor play on children's development Finally! Details of the project Remove uncertainty Provide more detail – who, what, where and when? Think about how you can add value... Think people, not just things.
WHAT TO AVOID • Generic statements • Uncertainty • Vague project details • Failing to back up the claims you make • Circular reasoning • Doom and gloom • Failing to identify project outcomes
WRITING THAT KILLER BID • Paint a ‘before’ and ‘after’ picture • Give clear aims and objectives • Be specific. What are you going to do? Why do you need funding? • Where, when, who, how and how often? • Explain why you have decided to take the approach that you’ve outlined. Why is your approach the right one? • How will the project involve the community? How will you add value beyond the school’s statutory responsibilities / outside of normal school hours?
WRITING THAT KILLER BID • Explain how beneficiaries have been involved in the project design/delivery. What have they told you? How has this influenced the project? • Give specific, achievable and measurable outcomes. How will you measure success? • Address project sustainability. How will you ensure the project lives on?
APPLYING THE FUNDER’S PERSPECTIVE • What would the funder say? • Havethey answeredallthequestions? • Does it represent a credible organisation? • Does the project meet the funding criteria? • Does the project help me to achieve my objectives? • Is it in keeping with other projects I have funded? • Do they talk about their beneficiaries’ needs and how they have influenced the project design? • Is the budget robust, detailed and matched to the project aims and description? • Is the project sustainable? • Is it likely to be a success?
EDITING AND PROOFING • Follow the rules • Check grammar, spelling, and coherency of expression • Check the use of capital letters and formatting for consistency • Avoid jargon • Ask someone to check it for you – a fresh pair of eyes
TOP TIPS • Leave plenty of time to write your application • Check the deadline and don’t miss it • Plan your project before putting pen to paper • If they provide a question & answer outline, then follow it • Make sure you answer the question directly • Back up all statements with evidence • Check if supporting documents are required • Check if you can use photographs
KEY STEPS TO SUCCESSFUL BID WRITING • Pledge your time • Take a professional, strategic approach • Match your needs to specific funds and funding criteria • Capitalise on strategic relationships • Build relationships • Consult your beneficiaries • Prove you can deliver • Accept offers of help • Always be focused, specific and write for your audience
WHAT NEXT? START TODAY! • Why is your school fundraising? • Write down your school’s wish list • Select a priority project • Think about the basics – what, where, when, how and why? Wish List New soft play area Revision material for pupils Breakfast clubs