From Monday 13 April 2015 we are making some important changes to the way we ask you to provide feedback on grants. There are two changes being made.
The first change is the introduction of online monitoring. We will be asking you to provide feedback on your grant using the same online system that you used to make your application. This will be more efficient, cheaper and better for the environment than our existing system. Just complete the online form and press submit. No more printing or postage costs, and no more having to dig out the paper form we sent you six months ago!
For grants made after April 1, 2015 you will be able to access the online monitoring form for your grant at any time. You can do this by going to the Community Foundation website http://www.communityfoundation.org.uk/apply and logging in to your account using the email address and password you used to make your application. You will even get an email reminder when your feedback is due.
Online monitoring will apply to all grants made subject to an application to the Community Foundation. Paper monitoring forms will only be accepted in exceptional circumstances.
The second change is the introduction of impact reporting. This is being brought in to make sure the Community Foundation has the information it needs to tell donors about the work done with their funding. Hopefully this will encourage them to give more! It will also support our work with grantees to ensure that our funding makes a real difference to local communities.
The way we will expect you to report on impact is very simple. When you apply for a grant we will ask you to tell us what you want to achieve in the form of 1-3 grant objectives. These don’t have to be complicated. We just want you to tell us exactly what you intend to do with your grant and by when. The most important thing is for your grant objectives to be “SMART”
|Specific||You should state exactly what you intend to do with the grant.|
|Measurable||Make sure it is possible to collect evidence of what is achieved with the grant.|
|Achievable||Be realistic, and only set grant objectives that you are able to deliver.|
|Relevant||Remember we are interested primarily in what difference our grant will make.|
|Timescaled||For each grant objective tell us exactly when you hope to have achieved it.|
Examples might include:
- For a simple grant to purchase a mower for a cricket club:
- A mower will be bought and used on the club’s pitch by June 2015.
- For a more complex grant to run youth sessions focused on promoting healthy living:
- 40 young people will take part between June and August 2015.
- 12 sessions will be held of 2 hours duration in Summer 2015 covering exercise, healthy eating, smoking, sexual health and drugs and alcohol.
- We will collect “before and after” evidence to see if participants’ attitudes to healthy living change and report our findings in September 2015.
Our grant assessors will review your grant objectives when we consider your application, and may wish to recommend changes to them if necessary. Then, at the end of the grant period we will ask you to provide evidence that your grant objectives have been achieved. For this reason it is important to ensure from the start that you collect information about how you are doing in relation to each grant objective. From 2015 we will begin auditing a selection of grants each year to ensure that the information provided on impact is as accurate as possible.
We anticipate that in some cases, the organisations we fund will not succeed with all their grant objectives. Reporting honestly that particular grant objectives have not been met will not affect your future chances of applying for funding from the Community Foundation. After all, things do not always go as expected. Usually we just want to understand the lessons learnt when things go wrong, so that they can be done better next time. However, should this happen on a regular basis, we may want to discuss with you ways in which we can help you ensure that future grants are more successful.
Do you require further guidance?
If so, please speak to any of our philanthropy or programmes staff who will be glad to assist.